To become a process server in this country, there are distinct rules to observe in different states. Luckily, in Louisiana, the laws are not that strict, but things can quickly get complicated in other jurisdictions. Pretty much every state, plus Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico, requires that a person reaches the age of 18, or the local age of the majority, before serving process. However, some states require process servers to get registered with, or licensed by, a state agency to work.
- Educational Requirements
You don’t have to obtain a college degree to become a process server. That said, there are multiple training programs to provide you with a solid background before you get started. Some undergrad courses in legal studies can be beneficial since process servers are considered officers of the court and are expected to know basic civil procedure.
States where licensing is required may mandate that process server’s complete coursework as a condition of certification. These classes are usually offered by colleges, sheriff’s offices, and state associations.
- Background Checks
While many states, including Louisiana, do not check backgrounds, there are several that do. This means that a criminal background, or, perhaps, only a severe crime, such as a felony, may bar someone from pursuing a career as a process server.
- Certification, Registration, or Licensing
In several states, as mentioned above, it is requisite that potential process servers gain a certification or pass an exam to get a license to start working. This can entail filing an application, going for drug testing, and submitting proof of liability insurance.
Not all these things are mandatory in all states, of course. Each state has its own laws and procedures. For example, here in Louisiana, licensing is not at all necessary. A judge must appoint a process server instead, based on one’s credentials and overall character. The appointee must also prove that he or she has reached his or her 18th birthday and acknowledge that he or she is will never be a party to any of the cases he or she is working, as this would be a conflict of interest.
Once appointed, individuals may legally serve process, if they are able to provide in-person service by leaving the required paperwork with the proper person.
The only way to gain experience as a process server, not unlike any other field, is hands on. You can start working for other companies first before hanging out your own shingle.
For example, collection agencies and law offices are always looking for process servers to work with them in-house or to simply establish a relationship with so they can be called on in a hurry.
Give Us a Call
When it comes to experience, Baton Rouge Process Servers has it in spades. Scott Frank and his crew have been in the game for over twenty years, and he will work hard for you. Give us a call or email today and let us know what we can help with.
Donna Lee Hellmann is a New Orleans-area copywriter. The foregoing article has simply been presented for informational purposes only. She, and those at Lafayette Process Servers LLC, are not attorneys. If you seek further information about this topic, contact an attorney in your local area.