Generally, serving a business is easy. There’s usually a helpful receptionist who either accepts service or calls down somebody authorized to accept legal documents on behalf of the company. That is how it should be.  Every once in a while, though, a business comes along that never has anybody authorized to accept service.  These businesses hide behind smug receptionists and assume that if the authorized person does not come to accept service, then the lawsuit will just go away. Unfortunately for them, this is not the case.

Statute 801.11 5(a) authorizes process servers to serve “the person who is apparently in charge of the office.” Unhelpful receptionists tend to have a knack for finding somebody authorized to accept papers very quickly when they find out that they are “apparently in charge of the office” and the papers will be left with them, whether they like it or not.

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