Woman served papers on work place.

Being served legal documents is something that happens to a lot of people. It’s normal, and although it can be stressful, the vast majority of people are already familiar with the process.

Process servers are the people who deliver legal documents on behalf of someone else like a court, attorney, law enforcement, or business. Process servers will try to make contact with their intended target of the documents using any method possible.

If they cannot get in contact with you directly, they will usually leave a notice instead so that you know what has happened and why it was you need to get in touch. Sometimes that includes reaching out to your last known place of employment.

Is it Legal to Be Served at Work?

It depends on the state, but for the most part, a process server is allowed to serve you at your place of employment. They can deliver the documentation to you directly or to someone else at the business that is authorized to accept legal paperwork on your behalf. Those deliveries are usually more for businesses and not for individuals.

In rare circumstances, a process server will need to get permission before entering a legally gray area like somewhere that deals with the private rights of a client or customer of your business. However, these are rare. A process server is allowed to serve papers:

  • At your home
  • In a public space
  • At your work
  • Via certified mail
  • With an authorized designated party

Isn’t This a Bit Humiliating?

The vast majority of process servers understand how being served at work can be embarrassing. Part of the process server’s code of conduct is to treat everyone with respect while being candid and truthful.

That is why most process servers will attempt a delivery aligned with your role. If a business is being served, then you can expect the first attempt to be at the workplace. If a private individual is being served, there is a good chance the first few attempts will be at their place of residence or a public space where discretion is preferred.

A process server can attempt to make delivery any time of the day or night. The only exception is on Sundays.

Can’t I Just Ignore the Process Server?

It is not uncommon for some recipients to feel attacked or targeted by a process server, even when every courtesy has been extended. This is because being served with papers is rarely a welcome situation. It could mean everything from divorce to having to appear in front of a court.

If you choose to while they are performing their duties, they can drop them beside you or leave them on your windshield if you refuse to lower your window. Avoidance is not going to stop legal actions from taking place.

What if I’m Not at Work?

If you are not available at your workplace, a process server can still serve you. Process servers can serve individuals at their place of business, place of employment, place of education, and any other public place where they are likely to be found. Process servers may also serve individuals who do not live in the same residence as the party being served.

It helps to know ahead of time if you are being served. This way, you can better prepare yourself for the situation and turn over the paperwork to your legal counsel. If a server is not respecting your privacy or being intrusive in any way, don’t hesitate to call their boss.

Working with professional and respectful process servers around the Houston area is the best option. Our team is dedicated to performing our services with dignity and pursuing all reasonable opportunities as far as possible. That is why we are well known in the Houston area for our commitment to success and professionalism. If you have legal documents needing to be served, reach out  through our intake form.

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