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Service of Process: Important Things You Should Know

You’ve filed your civil complaint in Volusia County and received the initial case summons from the Clerk of Court…now what? The next step in your legal journey is to serve the summons and complaint to every defendant named in your suit. Additionally, if you intend to call any witnesses during the case, you’ll need to serve them with subpoenas requesting their appearance. So is it time to make some copies and start knocking on doors? NO! Serving process is an essential part of the legal system with specific rules that must be followed.

Service of Process is Required

If you’re thinking about skipping serving the process in your civil case and just showing up on the scheduled court date, think again. Service of process is absolutely required before any court case can proceed in Florida. The Clerk of Court where the case was filed will keep an eye out for confirmation that all defendants have been properly served within the required timeframe, as proof of said service must be documented and should be filed with the court upon completion. If the clerk cannot verify that everyone was served, the case will be delayed (or worse) until everyone is properly notified. Continue reading

What Does a Document Retrieval Company Do?

If you’re an attorney handling multiple cases at once, you can easily start drowning in all the paperwork that is involved. Each case usually requires dozens, if not hundreds, of documents to be located, analyzed, and stored for easy reference. Depending on the size of your firm, you may even have to hire multiple people just to handle all the documents. That means extra labor costs, extra overhead costs, and extra stress managing additional employees. 

What is Document Retrieval?

You can avoid all that hassle by using a professional document retrieval company, like Accurate Serve of Daytona Beach. Document retrieval is quite simply the process of locating any type of document. There really is no limit to what type of documentation can be found with document retrieval. Continue reading

Rules Every Process Server Must Follow

There’s a lot of confusion out there related to what process servers are and are not allowed to do while serving process. Hollywood has played a part in distorting the public’s view about what a process server does, depicting servers in disguises sneaking up on unsuspecting victims. However, professional process servers, like those here at Accurate Serve® in East Central Florida, never behave this way. Additionally, the state of Florida also governs and oversees the process server industry here.

Process servers in Florida must abide by the following rules in order to serve process legally: Continue reading

Qualities You Should Look for in Your Process Server

Who you use to serve your case’s process to defendants and witnesses matters. Florida has strict laws and regulations on who can and cannot be a process server in our state. Using a process server that doesn’t meet the required guidelines is a big no-no and could result in your case being delayed or even thrown out! In this post, we’ll review the qualities that you should be looking for when interviewing potential process servers.

Process Servers Must Meet Florida’s Minimum Requirements

Volusia, Flagler, Putnam, and St. John’s counties all belong to Florida’s 7th Judicial Circuit. The 7th circuit is a little different than most other judicial circuits in Florida. Instead of maintaining a list of approved process servers, servers in Volusia, Putnam, and Flagler must be individually approved to serve process for each and every case they work. In St. Johns County, process servers are approved by the Sheriff’s office. Continue reading

4 Reasons You Need a Process Server

If you’re preparing to file a lawsuit, you probably already know that you will need to have the court summons and complaint, collectively known as process, served on the case’s defendants. Serving process is simply delivering the court paperwork to the intended recipient or a suitable alternative. In Florida, you’re not allowed to serve the process in your own case yourself…you must use either your local sheriff’s office or a private process server. In this post, we’ll discuss four reasons why you’ll want to opt for a private process server for your case. Continue reading

Reasons a Process Server Matters

Process servers are an essential component of the legal system in the United States. Without process servers, court cases would come to a halt as individuals frequently failed to appear, most likely due to a lack of knowledge that they were required to do so. But there’s a lot of misinformation out there about what process servers do or why they are necessary, so we’re here to explain.

What do Process Servers Actually Do?

Process servers notify individuals and companies about court cases filed against them as well as future court dates. Individuals and businesses would likely not even realize they needed to appear in court if these notifications were not provided. Process servers are also responsible for making sure that the notification is delivered on time so that the defendant(s) may prepare fully for their case, as required by law. Continue reading

Why You Should Never Lie to a Process Server?

If you’re being served with legal papers, it’s important, to be honest with the process server. Lying to a process server can only make your situation worse and will not help you avoid having to appear in court. So, if you’re served with papers, plan to appear in court as scheduled. 

There are some serious consequences to lying to a process server, including:

Extra Expenses

On each service attempt, a process server incurs additional costs, extra court time, and attorney expenses associated with rescheduling times. If the judge believes you are maliciously avoiding the process server, you will be made responsible for any extra expenditures incurred due to the delays. This also includes paying increased attorney fees for the claimant! Continue reading

Spotting a Fake Process Server

It may sound crazy, but there are actually people out there who pretend to be process servers. They see it as a quick way to make a buck, but hiring a fake process server in Florida can mean big trouble for your court case. Before you slip up and hire a phony server, read through our tips on spotting these imposters:

Tip #1: Ask to See Past Orders

In Volusia County, a private process server must be appointed to each and every case in which they intend to serve process by a circuit civil court judge. Experienced process servers should have no problem showing your copies of past orders where they were appointed to cases with the client’s information redacted. Continue reading

Reasons to Hire a Local Process Server

Volusia County handles appointments of process servers differently than most Florida counties. While Volusia County, along with Flagler, Putnam, and St. Johns, are all part of Florida’s 7th Judicial Circuit. The 7th Judicial Circuit allows each county to decide how they want to handle certifying and appointing process servers (other than law enforcement). St. Johns is the only county in the 7th circuit that has chosen to allow the Sheriff’s department to appoint these “special process servers”. In Volusia, Putnam, and Flagler counties, private process servers are appointed on a case by case basis by a judge with the county civil court. Continue reading

April Newsletter 2022

Message from the Founder

We have great news in the process serving world in regards to service of process originating from the great state of Michigan.  The Governor signed Senate Bill 244 into law on March 23, 2022.  The law will go into effect 180 days from that date, so September 20, 2022.

What does the Bill say and what changes will take place? The main change in this Bill is the change of the current requirement of needing Affidavits of Service to only requiring a written Statement of Service, or a Return of Service that does not need to be notarized. A Return of Service is without notary and an Affidavit of Service has a notary block on it.

If you are an Attorney in Michigan, this article is a Heads Up for you. If you start seeing Returns of Service for MI cases now, that is not good. But, if you start seeing them closer to the end of the year, just know that it is proper at that point (after 9-20-22).

The entire Bill is attached for your viewing pleasure.

Beau Charlet
https://www.theaccurateservefranchise.com/

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FRANCHISEE: PLANTATION

Bring on the sunshine! Spring is here and as it does every year it brings a change of seasons. Out with the old and in with the new for 2022! This year Accurate Serve® Plantation has a big change to share as well. There has been a change in ownership and management for the Plantation office. Moving forward, when you reach out to our Plantation office you will be greeted by myself and my team. I personally have over 8 years of experience in the industry and operating Accurate Serve® Offices. My team oversees offices throughout Fort Myers, Port St. Lucie, Dallas and Houston and I am excited to extend our customer services into the Miami area.

There will be no changes to the way that you send us work. You can email the documents for service to serve@accurateserveplantation.com or submit the work through our websites ‘send work’ tab here www.accurateserveplantation.com/sendwork

What you can expect moving forward is, friendly and professional customer service, timely responses to emails/phone calls and updates on jobs. Quick turnaround on signed returns/affidavits.

Accurate Serve® Plantation is revamped for the 2022 year and I am excited to work with our current and new clients down the road. My office is here for any of your processing serving needs, no matter the location of service you can email us the documents. My team will always confirm receipt of your emails and we will keep you updated on our progress for each job.

If you are a current customer, THANK YOU! Your business is greatly appreciated and I have enjoyed meeting you through phone and email conversations. If you have used our services in the past, please contact us the next time you are in need of service in order to meet our new team. I look forward to assisting Attorneys and Paralegals alike with your process serving needs and earning your business.

Thank you,

Brandon Muscato
Need our help?
Call (954) 770-9997

or
Email serve@accurateserveplantation.com

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QUICK TIDBIT!
Did you know that FL courts started e-filing on 4-1-13?  That was close to 9 years ago. Before e-filing, we would walk stacks of cases into the Clerk’s office and let them stamp and file everything with hard copies. Those sure were different times.
Word of the Month: Intersperse – to insert or place at intervals
M A R C H
3/13 – Daylight Savings Time
3/17 – Happy St. Patricks Day!
3/20 – First Day of Spring
Office Anniversaries
Tampa, FL
February 2022 Job Statistics

February 2022 Job Count – 4,045
Average Number of Days from Receiving Paper to Paper Being Served* – 6.04

*This includes jobs that may be on hold or waiting for new info. There is no way to take those jobs out of the calculation. So, if a job is placed on hold for 2 weeks, that’s 14 days on that job which factors in to this average. So, we’re even better than what the eyes see, LOL. Some papers get served same day, some next day and some take multiple attempts/addresses to effect service. All we do all day and every day is serve papers. We’re good at it and we love what we do. Thank you for allowing us the opportunity to continue to serve your papers.

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