New Jersey Process Servers Host BBQ and Elections

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The New Jersey Professional Process Servers Association hosted its 2nd annual picnic on August 11th at Turkey Swamp Park in Freehold, NJ.

There were over 40 attendees, including New Jersey process servers and also members from New York, including past president of NAPPS and current president of the New York State Professional Process Servers Association Larry Yellon.

Here are some pictures from the event:


BobTaylor_LarryYellon SittingAtTables IMG_3772
Elections were also held at the picnic, resulting in the following board members:

President: Amanda Sexton

Vice-President: Michael Doyle

Treasurer: Ethel Smith

Directors:
Brian Zavodnick
John Hiltwine
John Perez
Bob Taylor

 

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Why New Jersey Foreclosure Cases Require a Knowledgeable Process Server

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New Jersey foreclosure cases, with their lengthy and specific rules and compliance requirements, make having a knowledgeable process server a must.

Because of the constant change in foreclosure rules, what was acceptable as to service and due diligence three years ago is very different then the accepted practices for today.

Knowing what information to collect depending on who is residing at the property as well as making any notations as to the property condition can be invaluable for an attorney seeking a foreclosure. Proper notification of tenants is also extremely important in foreclosure cases, and your process server should know what information needs to be given and how to proceed if the property is tenant occupied. Sometimes an individual will only answer the door once and this is a process server’s golden opportunity to get the information both they and the plaintiffs need.

In the case of foreclosures knowing the rules regarding fictitious spouses is also relevant, as many courts have requirements as to how you can serve an individual and their spouse. Serving someone as the “husband of” or “wife of” or not serving them at all could mean the difference of needing to attempt service again or not. Serving again = increased timelines and more money spent.

Having a knowledgeable and experienced process server can also reduce costs. Many times in the event where service can’t be completed, an attorney must serve through alternate methods such as publication and certified mail. The cost of publication varies depending on the particular newspaper and number of words, but it is always an additional cost and additional time that could have been avoided if service was completed.

There is also the administrative tasks required for producing publications. The courts are very strict in regard to what they will or won’t accept as proper service by publication and having one piece of information wrong or missing from a publication will almost always result in needing to print the publications all over again.  Time spent on publications is valuable time you and your staff could be spending elsewhere.

Looking for a knowledgeable New Jersey process server to handle your foreclosure services? Contact us today to see how our expertise can help keep your timelines moving.

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Appellate Court Reverses Decision For Log Book Requirement For Process Servers Outside of New York City

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A New York Court has reversed the June 2013 decision that process servers outside of New York City had to maintain a log book for services performed outside of New York City.

The Appellate Division 2nd Department of the Supreme Court of the State of New York in Moret Partnership V. William J. Spickerman, et al has reversed the decision of Justice Winslow of the Nassau Supreme Court.

The case involved a defendant moving to vacate a judgment due to improper service. While the process server testified his employer kept a work ticket which he filled out as a record for each service, there was no log book maintained.  The original ruling concluded that despite the sufficiency in testimony and affidavits to constitute proper service, the failure to comply with the log book requirement resulted in improper service.

The New York State Professional Process Servers Association at the time of the original ruling voiced its opposition. Legislation to remove the log book requirement was introduced in the past legislative session but was not brought to the floor, but will be pursued in the upcoming session.

To read the full decision of the Appellate Division, click here.

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Cause For Concern For Process Servers In Washington?

Posted by | Legislation/Bills | No Comments

A fellow blogger recently published a series of several articles which highlights some growing issues in the state regarding service by mail and alternate methods as replacement for traditional service.

One of these posts stands out as not only a concern as to where the future of process service is headed, but also as a problem for everyone who believes in the right to due process.

One of the articles references SHB 1730, which would allow service of a summons on a party to a real estate purchase and sale agreement by first-class mail. This piece completely disregards any need for due diligence.

The new rule also doesn’t require mailing by certified or registered mail, as service via mail usually does. Here is another big issue. How can there be proof of service? What’s to prevent someone from simply saying the summons was mailed? As Robin points out, there is nothing to protect the defendant’s in the case.  While this is a minimal portion of the entire bill and how service can be pursued in various scenarios, that this provision even made its way into the bill is a problem.

As process servers, we need to be aware of what legislation is going on in our state and take steps to oppose any part we feel is detrimental to both our industry and to the right to due process. This is one piece of legislation which shows the types of service which could make its way into law and slowly spread to be included in other rules and service scenarios if we are not diligent in keeping an eye on the bills in our state Senate and House.

 

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4 Reasons You Should Use A Messenger Service

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New Jersey messenger serviceWondering whether to use a messenger service or go with another delivery method? Here are 4 reasons to use a messenger service:

You need something somewhere quickly.

Need to send something to an adversary? File something with the court before 4pm? A messenger service can make sure that happens.

At DGR for example, when you call us we can usually have someone at your door in thirty minutes. Even better, know you’ll have a delivery ready at 1pm? Give us a call in the morning to let us know and we’ll have someone there. No waiting, no scrambling to get somewhere when you have other things to do. Which leads us to….

You don’t have time to do it yourself.

You’re busy. You have tasks that are piling up and your time is better spent whittling down your to-do list and addressing more urgent matters that require your expertise.

Your delivery takes priority.

With UPS and FedEx many times your same day delivery is often being shipped alongside others without any particular priority.

Using a messenger service means your service gets priority. At DGR, our messengers handle one delivery at a time which means when you’re delivery is picked up it’s going directly to where it needs to be.

Messengers know what they’re doing and where they’re going

From back roads to avoid traffic and accidents to being on a first name basis with many of the court staff, our trained messengers can take valuable time off a delivery. Individuals and companies who have been handling messenger service for years know the ins and outs and best ways to make your delivery is completed on time.

 

Looking for a New Jersey messenger service? DGR is here to help, with available staff and messengers and email notifications of completed delivery. Contact us today for more information.

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The 3 Biggest Problems In International Process Service

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international process serviceInternational process service can prove to be one of the biggest headaches in dealing with international cases. We’ve even had attorneys go so far as having us purchase plane tickets in order to be able to serve an individual in a terminal before they jet off to another country. Those extremes can still be less drastic than the amount of effort, time and money involved in international process service.

There are times, particularly in cases involving the collection of a judgment, when international process service is inevitable.

Here are the three biggest problems in international process service.

How to Serve

This is one of the easiest of the three issues in international process service to solve. Knowing whether a country is a signatory to the Hague Service Treaty  or Inter-American Service Convention and whether or not you need a judgment enforced will help you decide how to proceed with service. We’ve created this flowchart in case you need some help making the decision, or you can always call us and we’d be happy to help you.

Timing

International process service can take several months and sometimes up to a year depending on the type of service. When it comes to lawsuits and legal matters, most people want them resolved as quickly as possible so this timeline generally isn’t the ideal situation. Add into the situation delays when delayed with foreign governments and consulates, particularly ones who aren’t signatories to any conventions or treaties and you could see an even more extended timeline.

There are alternatives to obtain a shortened service time such as service via agent, but it all depends on whether or not you will be expecting a foreign country to enforce a ruling or judgment after service. If so, you should expect to serve according to the rules and laws of that specific country which could take time.

The reason for the length of the process is the amount of time it takes for the paperwork to work its way through the receiving country’s central authority as well as the receiving country when dealing with service through the Hague Convention. Service via Letters Rogatory will involve the US Justice Department and also involves dealing with the foreign courts and authorities who then forward the service on to the local courts with jurisdiction over the subject. This can take considerable time, in some cases up to a year.

Knowledge of Local/Country Laws and Rules

Even though a country may be a signatory to the Hague Service Convention, this doesn’t necessarily mean they comply with every portion. Countries can say they don’t agree to service by mail or alternate service and still be signatories, simply striking out the portions of the Service Convention.

On top of these partial acceptances of the Hague Service Convention, there are also specific local and country rules and laws which apply to service. Translation comes into play when dealing with different regions of a country, as the requirements for which language a document is to be translated into can vary depending on where in the country the service is being effectuated. Sending the documents in the wrong language can result in rejected service and having to resubmit to the service all over again.

 

 

Looking for a knowledgeable international process server? We’ve served all over the world. Feel free to contact us to see how we can help.

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Process Service & Private Investigations: How The Two Can Work Together

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process serviceIn our last article we talked about the importance of due diligence in process service. What happens when you need to take your due diligence a step further? That’s where a private investigator can help.

In cases where personal service is necessary, hiring a private investigator can help you obtain more detailed information about an individual’s whereabouts. Most process servers develop techniques and skills to locate alternate addresses for service as their experience grows, but private investigators have a wealth of databases and information available to them that is not accessible to the general public. Being able to pull past addresses and current information on an individual can help locate a person quickly for service.

There are times when a DMV check and all information will point back to a particular address for an subject, but the person who answers the door may say the subject no longer resides there. In this case it may be helpful to run a full check on an individual to prove they do indeed live there in order to pursue alternate service.

There are also times when a private investigator may conduct a more traditional type of investigation, canvassing areas where the individual used to reside in order to find a new address or place of employment. In cases where a residential address can be difficult to obtain, a subject can sometimes be tracked down by place of employment.

Looking for private investigations or process server? We can help. Contact us today for more information.

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Why Due Diligence Is So Important In Process Service

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due diligence process serviceIn order to pursue alternate service methods, it is always required to prove due diligence has been completed in attempting to serve an individual or entity. This means efforts have been made to serve the individual as well as to locate them if an accurate address has not been obtained.

Why is this so important?

Otherwise a process server could make one attempt, declare a non-serve and the attorney could petition for alternate service. After a month of publications an individual who did indeed live at the address where service was attempted but was at work could find their wages garnished as a result of a judgment they didn’t know they had against them or their house seized when they didn’t know they were in foreclosure.

Due diligence is an important aspect of process service. Not only is it necessary to make multiple attempts at a residence during different times of the day (early morning, afternoon and evening), but it is also important to try to locate an alternate address for service if there is confirmation the address is incorrect. The property could be vacant, a neighbor or tenant could say the individual no longer lives there – whatever the way a process server finds out that person no longer lives at that address, there is a responsibility on the part of the plaintiff to seek another address to serve the individual at.

There are times when it is impossible to find an individual without incurring a high cost, when they have made an active effort to hide their tracks. In those cases a judge will generally grant approval to serve by alternate methods, whether by mail or publication. In some rare cases service by social media has also been allowed.

Before that can happen though, a process server must ensure they have made every effort to complete due diligence in their service by making multiple attempts at different times of the day.

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Subpoenas Now Able To Be Served By Mail in Florida

Posted by | Legislation/Bills | No Comments

subpoena FloridaGovernor Rick Scott of Florida signed 44 bills in to law on May 21st, one of which was SB 570, which allows service of subpoenas by United States mail on witnesses in civil traffic cases.

The law will become effective on July 1st, 2015.

The code already allowed service of subpoenas on witnesses of a criminal traffic case, a misdemeanor case, or a second or third degree felony. The subpoena must be mailed the witnesses last known address at least seven days prior to the date of the required appearance.

A witness who does not appear in response to a subpoena that was not sent by certified mail may not be held in contempt of court.

To read the full bill go here.

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The Right To Due Process Is The Reason We Can’t Sign That Affidavit

Posted by | Process Server Standards | No Comments

RightToDueProcess“I know they said they don’t live there – but they have to be lying. Can’t you just leave the papers and sign an affidavit saying they’re served?”

We work hard to always be accommodating to our clients but sometimes the answer has to be no. Why? Because of the right to due process.

We oftentimes run into situations when attempting to serve an individual that a member of the household informs one of our servers that person no longer resides there.

Admittedly, this can be a frustrating situation as they are not always telling the truth. But does that mean if we think they’re lying we can still leave the papers and consider the individual served? No.

What if the DMV report comes back to that address? The answer is still no.

People move and don’t report their address changes. Sometimes they really no longer live at that address. Process service is part due process and without being sure that individual resides where service is being attempted, the right to due process is clearly being violated.

As process servers, we have a duty to perform our jobs according to the law and also ethically.

It’s not the end of the line at this point in a service. Yes, the other alternatives are a little more intensive but there are other steps that can be taken. A skip trace can be performed to find alternate addresses for service, possibly a business address or additional residential address. If you really think the person is lying and no other alternate addresses can come up, a stakeout can be done to try to catch the subject returning or leaving from the residence.

If all of these options don’t turn up results, the court will no doubt agree you have completed due diligence in attempting to locate the subject and will approve an alternate form of service, generally by mail and/or publication.

While it’s by far easier to serve an individual at the address we have on file for them, we cannot simply leave papers there based on that and consider the person served. The court has ensured that a case does not stop there because the individual can’t be located but all of the bases have to be covered. We must be certain we have the correct address for the subject in order to preserve their due process rights.

So while our main goal is to always get an affidavit back to you saying an individual was served, we can only do that if it’s properly served!

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