Any duty or labor performed for another person.
The delivery of a legal document that notifies the recipient of the commencement of a legal action or proceeding in which he or she is involved.
The term service has various meanings, depending upon the context of the word.
Under feudal law, tenants had a duty to render service to their lords in exchange for use of the land. The service required could take many forms: monetary payments, farm products, loyalty, attendance upon the lord as an armed horseman, carrying the king's banner, providing a sword or a lance, or plowing or other farm labor done for the king.
In contract law, service refers to an act or deed, rather than property. It is a duty or labor done by a laborer under the direction and control of the one for whom the service is performed. The term implies that the recipient of the service selects and compensates the laborer. It is the occupation, condition, or status of being a servant and often describes every kind of employment relationship. In addition, service may be used to denote employment for the government, as in the terms civil service, military service or the armed service, or public service.
In the area of domestic relations, the term refers to the uncompensated work, guidance, and upkeep an injured or deceased family member previously provided for the family; the injury or death of the provider of these services means that the work will have to be obtained from another source and at a price. In this context the term traditionally was restricted to the "services" of a wife under the theory that the husband's duty was to provide support and the wife's duty was to provide service. After injury to his wife, a husband could bring an action on his own behalf against the responsible party for compensation of the loss of her aid, assistance, comfort, and society. The modern view holds that a wife may also sue for the loss of assistance and society of her husband.
Service also means the delivery of a writ, summons and complaint, criminal summons, or other notice or order by an authorized server upon another. Proper service thereby provides official notification that a legal action or proceeding against an individual has been commenced.