Yes. And We Don’t Need Permission
Getting served is considered embarrassing by some people. After all, many times it’s debt collection or other bad news. Fortunately, most serves take place at the privacy of your home. Process servers do, however, occasionally attempt to serve people at work.
Servers will always use discretion when serving you at work.
Process servers are people and we do not want to make you look bad in front of coworkers. Normally, when we attempt to serve you at work, we’ll first ask the receptionist or whoever is at the front desk if you are in. If we are asked for a reason, we’ll simply state we have a delivery for you. At that point, it’s up to you to accept the papers calmly. We will usually step aside and make the service as discreet as possible. The only thing your coworkers would see is a person handing you some papers. If you don’t want them to know what we just gave you, don’t worry, we don’t tell.
Why Do Process Servers Try to Deliver Papers at Work?
Because it’s sometimes the only way to get you the papers. Most servers will not attempt to serve you at work until they have already made several attempts to catch you at home. Maybe your schedules aren’t lining up or perhaps you lived in a locked lobby apartment and the server can’t get to your door. Sometimes, it’s the only address we may have for you.
In any event, attempts at work are almost always a last resort.
Never forget that a process server is doing you a favor by getting these papers to you. If you don’t get them, how can you respond to the complaint? It is our duty to make every reasonable effort to get you the papers so you are aware of the lawsuit and what is being claimed. A process server who knew where you worked but turned in the papers for publication instead of attempting to serve you at your employer would be doing you a great disservice.
If a process server comes to your work to serve you, don’t make a scene and try to avoid service.
We’ve seen all kinds of crazy antics to avoid service at commercial locations, none of which help. Possibly the wildest came from one of our process servers in Milwaukee who was chased out of a hotel by a baseball bat wielding lobby attendant. Whether a defendant is served or not, the process server will turn in an affidavit of service to the court stating exactly what happened every time an attempt was made. If an individual engaged in shady avoidance tactics at work, the judge will probably not look too favorably upon the defendant.
Believe it or not, many defendants will actually call our servers and tell them to deliver the papers at work.
Sometimes, a process server will leave a business card on a defendant’s front door to see if there’s a mutually agreeable time to meet for service. For some defendants, the best time is during the work day. Our servers will be happy to deliver the documents where it’s most convenient, even if that is at your place of employment.