avoiding service of processPerhaps the single greatest factor in our success at difficult process servicing is having the knowledge of how people avoid being served. Remember, there are usually people who do not want to be served for one reason or another, and depending on the case they are avoiding, they may go to great lengths to avoid it. The following are a few of the common avoidance strategies we see in our work.

They will not answer the door, or will use gated homes or communities as a barrier.

This is often the first tactic that someone avoiding process uses, and it is true that if they do not answer the door or let anyone in the gate, they will not be served. However, our investigators will not only wait for the person to leave or arrive at their home – they will talk to neighbors to try and get as much information as possible to complete the successful service of process. Most people cannot stay inside their home forever.

If their home is within a gated community, private investigators have the authority to gain entry and complete service.

They may lie about their identity.

Once we have made it to the front door and found someone who will answer, a person trying to avoid service may lie about their identity. When this happens and we know that the address is correct and the person at the door fits the description of the defendant, we can ask to see some form of identification. If the person refuses, we know they are likely lying, as they would have no issue with identifying themselves if they were not avoiding service.

They may skip town or go on vacation.

If the case is serious enough and the potential consequences are worrisome enough for the defendant, they may choose to skip town or take a vacation, possibly even at the recommendation of their lawyer. Sometimes, they may not actually go anywhere but may have friends, relatives, and coworkers lie for them.

Thankfully, we not only have the skill for difficult process serving, but we are able to locate people when they have skipped town.

Typically, process servers have hundreds of defendants to serve each week, and will only make basic attempts to make contact with the party being sued because they are short on time. We assume the person being served will try to avoid us from the start, therefore we use countermeasures to get the papers to them as quickly as possible, in addition to covering all bases by talking to neighbors and using surveillance whenever necessary.

If you suspect that it will be difficult serving notice to the party you are suing, you shouldn’t waste your time and money using a service that will not be effective with difficult process serving. Instead, let us help you from the beginning. We have the skills and expertise to get the job done for you and in a time frame that will help meet your goals for bringing your case to court.

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Bruce Robertson

Bruce Robertson is a private investigator and founder of Tristar Investigation, California’s premiere detective agency. Bruce is also a media commentator for the investigation industry, featured in the New York Times, CNN, History Channel, MSNBC, Los Angeles Times and many more. You can find him on Google+ LinkedIn and YouTube.