When it comes to New Jersey process service, the laws and rules vary in many respects to those of other states. It’s important to choose a process server who is knowledgeable about these discrepancies and will be sure to follow the rules of the state of both the originating court and the state where service is being effectuated in order to ensure the service is valid.
A prime example of these differences is the days on which service is allowed. Within New Jersey process service allows for service on every day of the week. Yet there a number of state where service isn’t permitted on Sundays, including Maine, New York and Tennessee.
Another difference between the states is the requirements for individuals to be allowed to serve. New Jersey process service allows private process servers to effectuate service. This wasn’t always the case – prior to 2000 only sheriffs were allowed to serve initial process unless they received a special appointment letter from a judge allowing a private process server to serve. Thankfully this means there is the option to utilize a private process server anywhere within New Jersey, allowing for quick turn-around times for attorneys and case timelines.
There are other states however where private process servers are personally appointed by the Sheriff through a special private process server program, such as in Georgia. Other states only allow private process servers within specific counties such as Florida. In Pennsylvania, private process servers are only allowed to serve in Philadelphia County. Outside of that area the Sheriff’s Department is the only way to effectuate initial service.
New Jersey process service also differs from some other states in there is no registration or licensing of any sort. In New Jersey any individual can serve as long as they are over 18 years of age and don’t have a direct interest in the case. Other states require registration and licensing, with some states like Florida requiring registration on the county level. Some states also require testing prior to licensing, such as New York and Arizona.
Some states offer greater protection to process servers than others. Within Illinois, California and Florida assault on a process server is considered a felony. Other states allow process servers access to gated communities to effectuate service, which can turn an extremely difficult and time-consuming service into a more routine service.
These rules require process servers to stay up to date on the latest laws in order to make sure service will be valid and in compliance.