A process server is a professional who is hired to deliver or serve legal documents to an individual or business. These documents can be a complaint, law suit, subpoena, writ of summons or family law documents.
In a perfect world, this would be an easy task. The process server arrives at the individual’s home and knocks on the door. In the dream world, the person answers, confirms their identity, the process server hands the person their legal documents, and the process server is on his way.
Call us to determine if a stake out service is needed
Place the order
We perform the stake out service
Documents are served
We complete an affidavit of service
Wouldn’t that be a perfect scenario?
In reality, most people don’t want to be served papers. The individual can become rude, arrogant, hostile, and even physically abusive to the process server. This type of behavior never helps their court case, but it happens none the less.
Before the process server takes on a new assignment, they ask for relevant information about the individual or business. Some information needed is a description or picture of the person, their address, place of work, and a description of the vehicle the person drives. The more information they have, the easier it is to locate the individual and complete the service.
What Happens When a Person Does Not Want to be Served?
When a process server is looking for an individual that is rarely home, not easily found, or is evading service, they may perform a stakeout.
A stakeout is the surveillance of a residential or commercial location in anticipation of the evasive individual to arrive, so the process server can deliver the legal documents. A stakeout can be a long and boring job, just sitting in the car watching for the person. The server cannot read a book, play on their phone, or any other distracting activity because they could miss the person they are looking to serve.
A stakeout may consist of hours of boredom interrupted by a few moments of a flurry of activity. It can be done to either learn the routine of the individual or to serve the documents if the opportunity arises. In movies, a stakeout seems to last only a couple of minutes. That’s because it would be too uneventful if the movie showed someone sitting in their car for an entire 2 hours. Once the individual arrives, the process server must move quickly to intercept the individual, verify their identity, and hand them the legal documents. But again, even a stakeout is not always an easy task.