What is a process server?
Process servers are people who serve court papers or other formal or legal documents that require some kind of legal action, like someone’s presence in court.
Many papers are time sensitive and some have serious consequences if they are not adhered to. Process servers are trained professionals and are also known as process serving agents, court summons servers, international process servers or legal document servers.
Vilcol’s team of process servers deliver a range of legal documents from statutory demands, bankruptcy petitions, injunctions, court summons and writs to court orders in divorce and family law proceedings.
Why use a process server?
Process serving is carried out in accordance with legal requirements and the law, in a timely manner and to the correct location and person.
Vilcol has extensive process serving experience with 38 years in the field of people tracing and process serving (also called Court Serving). Our legal document servers adopt a scrupulous approach and all are well-versed in the law.
A process server will ensure that all documents are delivered correctly and on time. The process serving agent is independent to legal proceedings so their action can be used as evidence and carries more weight than were the papers served by a non-process server.
We can serve documents out of normal hours to home or business addresses, as instructed. We will provide an affidavit/certificate of service once the documents have been successfully served.
The serving of formal papers can at times trigger emotional responses like anger and aggression or distress on behalf of the person receiving the document. People who serve court papers must be skilled and trained to handle these responses in a professional manner. Vilcol's document and process servers are trusted individuals who get the job done efficiently and effectively.
How our process serving service works
A process server is expected to deliver legal documents to a named person but in cases where this cannot be achieved, it is possible for them to hand papers to management of someone’s workplace or to another resident who is 18 or over in the defendant’s home.
Process serving agents are legal document servers for the following:
• Divorce petitions
• Bankruptcy notices
• Insolvency document
• Statutory demands
• Witness summons
• Claim forms
Once we receive the necessary documents, your case will be logged immediately by an experienced process serving administrator and you will be sent a receipt usually by email.
Vilcol will dispatch instructions to our nearest process serving agent in the field. Our legal document server will attempt to make contact with the named person who is to receive the legal notice. The process server will do this for a maximum of three times at various times throughout the day.
We make efforts to keep our clients informed of progress and up-to-date at all times. If our process serving activities are not successful, we gather evidence and prepare a witness statement prepared to support any application for a substituted service.
Our process servers form a valued and highly trusted team of staff. We also conduct international process serving measures if that is what is required. Please contact us if you have any queries or wish to discuss your specific process serving needs.
Who hires process servers?
Vilcol provides a rapid, efficient and compliant process serving service to people or companies named in court documents. Our legal notice services can deliver court documents on behalf of:
• Government departments
• Local authorities
• Housing associations
• Debt collection agencies
• Private clients and individuals
Our process servers deliver all types of court documents or legal papers, in accordance with instructions and legal requirements.
We can serve documents throughout the UK through a strong network of experienced professional process serving agents and can provide a quick turnaround with attendance at short notice if necessary.
The fee is still payable when our legal document server attends and confirms conclusively that someone is not at the address that has been provided. If you suspect the individual(s) or company(s) have moved Vilcol also offers a Trace and Serve service.
You can either instruct us online or contact us to discuss any details or find out more about our process serving procedures.
Why choose Vilcol for your process serving requirements?
We have a wide number of people who serve court papers as part of our UK process serving agent network, as well as an international process serving function. We offer an efficient delivery service with papers usually served within one week.
We also provide an express service for next day delivery if this is required.
We are well-trusted professionals with solid expertise. By instructing Vilcol, you benefit from process servers of the highest calibre and can be confident you are working with the best.
How much does our process serving service cost?
Our standard legal docuent process serving service fee is £135.00 inclusive of report, affidavit or certificate of service.
Where the client is unsure about a person’s location, we are experts in tracing individuals and can make lawful and legitimate discreet enquiries into the whereabouts of individuals before court proceedings begin. Our Trace and Serve fee is £170.00 inclusive of report, affidavit or certificate of service.
Fees not inclusive of VAT.
Is the Process Serve still legal if you can’t hand over documents face-to-face?
Yes it is. When Vilcol’s process serving agents arrive at the named person’s place of location, we knock on the door to ascertain we are dealing with the right person. Our legal document servers outline the purpose of the visit and then either we leave the documents on the doorstep and stand back as part of social distancing requirements, or we post them through the letterbox.
The recipient usually opens the door to retrieve the documents while we witness them doing so. However, in cases where they refuse to pick them up, the process servers inform them that we are going to post the information through their letterbox and then we do so.
In both examples the exchange is written up and signed by the process server. Based on the contact, the relevant identification of the person on whom the papers are being served and the verbal dialogue, the exchange is considered a legal process serving activity.
What address should process servers deliver documents to?
If the documents to be delivered by the process server are intended for a business, then the address would be that of the Limited Liability Partnership or the office of the partnership, or anywhere in England and Wales where the partnership conducts its business.
If the documents are to be served to a person, then the process server would deliver to their current address. If you are unsure you have the correct address, then it's a good idea to instruct your agent to conduct a trace and serve service.
If the papers are to be served to an individual who is being sued in the name of a business, they would deliver to that person’s current or last known residence, or last known place of business.
If the individual is being sued in the name of a partnership, the process server will serve papers to the current or last known address of the individual or last known address of the partnership.
If documents are to be served on a company registered in England or Wales, the process server would deliver to the registered address.
Why can’t legal documents be delivered by a layperson?
To ensure court documents are served correctly and on time to the recipient named in the papers, then hiring an experienced process server to carry out the job is highly recommended.
Doing so will also add authority to court proceedings, as professional process servers are seen as independent, an important facet in the legal process. Because of their independence, process servers can provide proof of service that can be used in official evidence (more below).
Serving court orders and other legal documents can be complicated. There are some orders that can be posted through the letterbox, handing the document to a person who acknowledges the address is current for the subject and states they will hand it onto them. This is also known a substituted service and must ensure a standard process has been adhered to beforehand. Other process serves require a signature or a personal service.
In the case of the latter, it is always advised to use a professional process serving agency in the likelihood the recipient may become aggressive or respond in an unpredictable manner. Professional process servers have the skills and training to handle such scenarios.
If the process serving is not carried out in accordance with legal requirements, this can cause disruption and delays to court hearings. In some instances, it could mean the dismissal of a case altogether. In no circumstances, can a creditor serve legal papers on his own behalf.
What proof do process servers provide to show that the legal papers were served?
After legal papers have been served, the process server will most commonly produce a Certificate of Service, a Statement of Service or an Affidavit. These documents will confirm the date and time of the delivery, details of which will be lodged with the court before any legal hearing.
Need more help tracing people?
We are one of the UK’s leading tracing agents with expertise in people tracing, debtor tracing, debt recovery, process serving (handing over an official notice or court order by legal document servers), employment tracing, probate tracing, international people tracing and private investigations.