Companies and law firms providing service of process maintain due diligence to avoid it being discredited in the court of law. They take service of process very seriously and hold their process servers to the highest of standards.
Let’s discuss what service of process is, how it is carried out and what are the standards and the due diligence in service of process.
What Is Service of Process?
Service of process is the procedure through which one party notifies another of the initial legal action taken against the latter. They cannot conduct this process themselves and it must be done by a legally recognized process server. It is their job to deliver or ‘serve’ legal documents to the defendant or party involved in the lawsuit in a way that cannot be questioned in court.
Process servers are trained by their respective companies to eliminate any errors or problems they may face while serving papers. They make sure the service is fast, accurate and void of any illegal actions. All process servers go through orientations, regular trainings and updates that include COVID-19 procedures and specific state law measures. During their initial training periods, they are overlooked and reviewed by teams to check for errors and legal compliance.
These teams provide coaching and follow-ups as needed to ensure smooth service of process. Constant communication and oversight ensures accurate service of process at all times. Servers have access to online resources and internal teams that they can reach out to for guidance. They have vast information on unique standards for best practices and strategies for a successful service. They use special apps to stay organized and other technologies such as GPS and cameras to validate service or service attempts.
Service of Process Standards and Due Diligence
In litigation, service of process should be carried out in such a way that it leaves no question to the validity of service. High standards of service of process calls for respect, discretion and professionalism in interactions. Privacy of the defendant being served should be respected due to additional stress that comes with being involved in legal procedures.
Servers should clearly understand what it means to trespass and how they can avoid violating state and federal laws during service of process. Special behavioral and safety procedures are put in place for interactions and document handling due to the current pandemic situation.
There should be complete transparency and honesty from servers to both, defendants as well as their communication to the courts. Internal teams of companies should make follow-ups on reports of dishonesty of servers and terminate their contracts if proof is apparent upon investigation.
Servers should have clear instructions for each service, how to handle attempts of defendants to refuse service, when non-service is preferred and how to collect appropriate data of their attempts. This will ensure service of process standards and due diligence.
What Is Due Diligence?
Due diligence refers to the reasonable steps taken by servers to avoid committing illegal actions during service of process. It means that the process server did everything that could legally and reasonably be done to serve the defendant and was still unsuccessful. If process servers give up too soon then due diligence can be considered not present by the court, which leads to the service of process being rejected.
Due diligence should not be an end goal or checklist, rather a mindset of process servers. They should be diligent in accurately reporting any attempts and be able to prove those attempts when required by the law. They should have enough details and evidence that the service of process cannot be refuted by the courts. The evidence should hold enough credibility to prove that the defendant could not be found and therefore alternative service is required.
Baltimore Process Server
With over a decade of experience, EGA Process Serving can help get your court documents served. From routine to rush process serving, we understand how precious time is and can help you get your court documents served in a timely manner. Put your trust in EGA Process Serving today! Give us a call at 301-793-4336 to get started.