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A county process server is a person who delivers legal documents to witnesses and alleged violators within a prescribed county in one of the 50 United States or in counties located in Canadian provinces. Civil process servers used in other countries are employed by different regions and vicinities unique to each country. An employee in this position is normally considered part of the staff of a county’s Office of the District Attorney. He may serve all areas of a county or be limited to certain regions or neighborhoods.
The most common papers delivered by a country process server include summonses and subpoenas. Other documents frequently transported to people by the server include formal complaints and restraining orders. In some cases, notices of levies, liens and evictions may be presented to recipients through a person in this position.
Prior to going out into the field to serve documents, a county process server normally develops an itinerary to increase his efficiency. He commonly utilizes the District Attorney Office’s computer system to identify who he has to serve and gather information on their home and business addresses. If his research reveals that someone on his list has a violent criminal history or a reputation for physical confrontation, he may request a police officer to accompany him on the call.
If a person who needs to be served cannot be readily located, a county process server is typically authorized to conduct a low-level investigation to determine their whereabouts. This often includes contacting the person's former neighbors or co-workers. Telephone interviews as well as in-person meetings are commonly conducted.
In the cases where the papers are properly served to the recipients, the process server is customarily required to fill out proof of service documents. These forms normally require details regarding the time, date and place of service. If notable circumstances are involved in the process, they are typically noted on the report.
The process server is also frequently expected to keep a log of his daily activities and note the number of completed services as well as failed attempts. He is often required to keep track of his mileage for fuel and travel cost reimbursement. This information may be presented as hard copy documents or entered into the department’s internal computer system.
A high school diploma or equivalent is generally a requirement for this position. Past job experience indicating good organizational and communication skills is a plus. New hires are frequently provided with on-the-job training by accompanying an experienced county process server as they perform their job duties.
A good number of jurisdictions have sheriff's deputies serve process. That arrangements works out pretty well -- a good deputy can be intimidating and that goes along way toward people upset about being served getting upset and violent.
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