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Why Is a Sheriff a Bad Process Server?

If you have filed papers with the court and need papers served to the other parties, you may have been told by the court clerk that you could have the sheriff’s department serve the papers. While this may seem like a good idea on the surface, there are a lot of reasons that the sheriff makes a bad process server. Here are some of the reasons that you shouldn’t use the sheriff to serve your papers.


A sheriff’s department is not going to be timely about serving your papers. They have a lot of other responsibilities that take precedent over this low priority. Sometimes papers may never be served before they expire simply because they keep getting pushed down on the list of priorities. 


Sheriff’s departments rely on government funding to provide the resources they have. Every time they use those resources to locate people that need to be served, it takes away from the resources they have to keep everyone safe. The sheriff simply cannot spend the resources necessary to track someone down if they are not easily found. They have the capability, but they don’t have the time or effort to put into it.

No Updates

You won’t get much communication from the sheriff’s department about your papers getting served. You may not even receive confirmation that they were served until you get notice from the court. The sheriff’s department will not update you on the situation if the person couldn’t be served for any reason. They will just return the papers to the courts as undeliverable. 

If you have papers that you need served, the state of Florida allows you to use a private process server registered with the courts. Contact us today to learn how we can help.