If you are filing for divorce, suing someone, or instigating some other court matter, you will need to notify the other party of the case in order for it to move forward. The state of Florida requires that these types of court papers must be served either by the sheriff’s department or by a private process server certified and registered by the county. Here are some reasons why you should hire a private process server.
You Need Fast Service
The sheriff’s department will serve papers as part of their duties, but they don’t have time to dedicate to the practice. Sheriffs and their deputies have many pressing duties, primarily the protection of the citizens of the county. These duties can often mean that service of process gets pushed to the bottom of the list of priorities. For this reason, it can often take some time for you to get confirmation of service. A private process server only serves papers, which means that they can get your case moving quickly. Continue reading
Recently, federal courts have begun issuing warnings to lawyers in various states urging them not to share login information with third party vendors, including private process servers. While it may seem convenient to pass along information in this way, there are some very good reasons you should not share your logins with private process servers or any other third party. Here’s what you need to know.
Discrepancies in Papers
It may seem that the easiest way to get court papers to your process server is to simply give them your login so they can download and print the papers for themselves. However, this is not a good idea because there could be discrepancies in the papers. Problems could happen when papers are being uploaded to the site, such as pages being left out. If anything is inaccurate with the papers being served, it could hold up your court case. Continue reading
If you have friends and family that live out of state, they may try to convince you that you don’t need to pay a private process server to handle service of your court papers. While many states allow a third party unrelated to the case to serve papers, Florida is not one of those states. Here’s what you need to know about why you need to hire a private process server in Florida.
The Florida Statutes
The Florida state statutes about service of process are very clear. Only the local sheriff’s department or a private process server registered with the courts is able to serve papers in a court case. Private process servers must go through a registration and certification process, be over the age of 18, and have no legal handicaps. You cannot register as a private process server just to help a friend with one case, and there are almost no exceptions to this rule. Continue reading
For most court cases, the responding party to a case must be served notice of the action and given a chance to respond. Your court case cannot move forward without this happening, for the most part. But what happens when someone really cannot be found to serve them? If your process server did their due diligence, you may be able to get alternative methods of service, such as publication, granted by the courts.
What is Due Diligence?
Due diligence means that every reasonable effort was made, all laws and regulations were followed, and the problem could still not be resolved. In process service, due diligence means that they did everything that could reasonably done to serve the individual and were still unsuccessful. Some process servers give up too soon, and due diligence is not deemed present by the court. However, a good process server will not give up on service until every avenue has been pursued. Continue reading
It is important to your case that your papers are served correctly and speedily. There are a number of rules about how papers should be served depending on the type of papers and the type of case involved. When you use a private process server to serve your papers, you want to make sure that the method of service won’t jeopardize your case. Here are some questions to ask your process server once they notify you that papers have been served.
Did You Deliver the Papers to the Individual Listed?
In many cases, service of process has to be made on the individual listed on the papers. There are some instances in which giving the papers to another adult in the household is acceptable. Find out from the process server who received the papers and if it was within guidelines for the type of case you have.
Did You Verify Identity?
Not every type of case requires that the individual being served shows identification to receive the papers. However, there are some qualifying questions that must be asked by the process server to verify the identity of the individual being served. The process server may verify date of birth and other information to make sure that they are serving the correct individual. Find out from the process server what methods they used to verify who they were giving the papers to. Continue reading