Have you heard of the term “gutter serve”? If you aren’t part of the court system or the process service industry, you probably have never heard the term. A gutter serve is the worst kind of experience that someone can have with a private process server. Here is what gutter serves are, why they are important, and how to avoid them.
What Is a Gutter Serve?
A gutter serve is when a private process server throws away or destroys the papers rather than serving them to the intended individual. A gutter serve is completely illegal, and it can affect your case in many ways. If the intended recipient never receives the papers, they can contest service and set your whole case back by months. Continue reading
Your court papers can be served to the other party in your case by either a sheriff or a private process server. You may realize that private process servers are often less expensive or the same price and that private process servers are dedicated only to serving papers, but there are several other very good reasons that private process servers are more effective than the sheriff when it comes to serving papers.
A private process server has more technological tools at his disposal than the sheriff’s department. This is especially true in smaller communities. Often the sheriff’s department is working with a very strict and somewhat tight budget. They are not going to purchase technology for serving papers that will be used in only a few other ways. They simply cannot justify the cost. This means that private process servers have more tools at their disposal to find and serve your party. Continue reading
One reason that many people choose to use the sheriff’s department instead of a private process server is that a sheriff or their deputy is a trustworthy individual. They know that these law enforcement officers are legit and that they will handle the service with professionalism. Do you have the same guarantee with a private process server? As a general rule, yes.
Some States Limit Approval of Servers
More and more states are limiting the approval of private process servers. In most states, including Florida, private process servers must be registered and approved by the courts before they are able to legally begin serving papers. Registration generally has to be updated on an annual basis. This helps the courts ensure that only trustworthy individuals are part of the process. But is the process effective? Continue reading
Private process servers have many tools at their disposal to ensure accurate and timely delivery of papers. You may be surprised at the number of ways that process servers use technology to assist them, as well as in proving service was completed. Here are some of the top ways that process servers use technology.
A skip trace is a software or service that allows you to locate individuals utilizing their last known activity, address, and place of employment. Some process servers have their own software and tools for this process, while others hire out the service. Either way, a private process server that uses skip trace technology is more likely to be able to get your papers delivered promptly. Continue reading
Finding a good process server may seem like quite the chore. You don’t want to pick a process server off of a list given to you by the court without any information about the service. While Florida requires private process servers to be registered with the courts, there is no guarantee that the process server you pick off the list is going to provide the best price, quality service, and good customer service. Can you get all three from one process server? Absolutely.
Private process servers are often competitive in the industry, because they are not only competing with each other. They are also competing with the sheriff’s department, which handles many process service jobs for the courts. Some private process servers charge extremely low prices to draw people in, but do not provide the quality and service that other process servers might offer. It is important to choose a process server that is competitively priced, but the cheapest may not be the best option. Continue reading