If a process server approaches you, introduces themselves, and then asks what your name is…what would you say? Would you be honest and tell them who you are, even if it meant being served with a lawsuit? Or would you lie and not reveal your identity, throwing the process server off the trail temporarily?
While it may be tempting to lie to the process server about who you are, we just can’t urge you enough not to do so. Lying to a process server isn’t just unethical…it can lead to some pretty serious consequences. In this post, we’ll go over the exact reasons why you should never lie to a process server: Continue reading
Many people’s idea of a process server comes from Hollywood. In the movies, process servers are dressed up in pizza delivery driver uniforms, serving unsuspecting defendants with a large box of lawsuits before exclaiming “You’ve been served!” and scampering away. In real life, this is not how it goes.
Process Servers are Not Allowed to Lie About Who They Are
In the state of Florida, process servers are held to high ethical standards. Ethical misdeeds, even in a server’s personal life, can lead to banishment from the serving process in the state. Florida courts take this very seriously and will not hesitate to punish a process server who violates state laws. Continue reading
While many process recipients are easy to locate and serve, there are always some who avoid being served. People avoid process servers for various reasons, including not wanting to accept the reason they are being taken to court, not having money for an attorney, or simply not wanting to take the time to handle the issue.
So what should a process server do when trying to serve someone who doesn’t want to be found? Here are our top tips for locating evasive process recipients:
Do Your Research
If your client doesn’t give you enough information to locate the intended process recipient, or target, it’s time to put your research cap on. The easiest way to do research these days is online. Many states, counties, and cities publish public records online in easily searchable formats. Dig through online tax bills, property records, business registrations, news articles, social media sites, and more to find out as much as possible about the person you are trying to find. Save all relevant information in a dedicated place, such as a binder, notebook, or online document. Once you’re finished with your research, go back and review all the information you’ve gathered to get some good ideas on where to look for the target. Continue reading
You might think that if you avoid the process server for long enough, the legal case itself will just disappear. As nice as that may sound, it is absolutely delusional. Once a court case is filed against you, there is no magic action that will make it go away.
If you’ve ever wondered exactly what could happen if you continue to avoid a process server, this post is for you. We’ll go over the most common things that happen to defendants who try to avoid their cases.
You will definitely cause some delays if you choose to avoid the process server. Your court date may need to be rescheduled several times, which isn’t going to put you in the judge’s good graces. Continue reading
We are often asked why a person filing a lawsuit cannot just serve the court documents to the defendant(s) themselves. Quite simply put, this is prohibited by Florida law. But why exactly does the state of Florida require process servers to be certified, approved, and/or appointed by a judge? It’s all about the underlying constitutional right that process servers uphold.
What Do Process Servers Do?
Process servers are a lot more important than most people think. While they only deliver documents at face value, it’s the contents of those documents that make process servers so essential. The court process typically informs a defendant of a pending legal matter against them or that they are requested to provide information for. The process contains the details of the claims along with the upcoming court date, time, and location. Continue reading
In the state of Florida, when you file a legal complaint against another party with the Clerk of Court, the clock starts ticking. It is now the plaintiff’s responsibility to make sure the parties named in the complaint and resulting court summons are properly notified. Florida requires that this notification be done by a law enforcement officer or certified third-party process server.
Summons & Complaints
From the date of filing, the plaintiff has 120 days (approximately 4 months) to serve the named defendant(s) with the summons and complaint. Refer to Florida’s state laws governing process servers for all the rules about how process may be served (there’s a lot!). Continue reading
The majority of process recipients are pretty easy to find, but from time to time, a recipient is incredibly difficult to find. When this happens, process servers turn up the heat and employ all of their resources to track down the process recipient. But what happens if you still cannot locate the process’ intended recipient after you’ve searched everywhere? In this post, we’ll cover how thorough process servers are expected to be and options when a process recipient cannot be found.
Diligence is Key
Process servers are responsible for delivering court documents to the appropriate individuals, so it’s important that they’re diligent in their work. If they can’t serve someone, they must take steps to ensure that the individual is made aware of the documents. Continue reading
Serving process here in Florida can be pretty challenging. Process servers face many obstacles when attempting to perform this basic legal function, some of which can be quite difficult to overcome. Some of the most common challenges process servers face while working include:
People Who Don’t Want to be Found
No one enjoys a visit from a process server. At best, you’re being called as a witness. At worst, you’re being sued. Either way, frustration is in your future. Some people deal with this impending stress by avoiding the process server. This is always a mistake and never actually results in them not having to appear in court. In fact, it could land them in jail…but that doesn’t stop people from trying. The extra time and effort that must be spent to try to locate people who don’t want to be found is by far a process server’s #1 challenge. Continue reading
So you’ve filed a small claim or civil lawsuit in St. Lucie County…now what? What are the next steps you need to know in order to be sure you get your day in court? In this post, we’ll discuss the legal process after filing a civil lawsuit here on the Treasure Coast.
Once your small claims or a civil lawsuit is filed with the St. Lucie County Clerk of Court, the following steps must be taken by the plaintiff (the one who filed the lawsuit): Continue reading