National Association of Professional Process Servers

How Much Does a Process Server Cost?

Process servers deliver court documents to an individual who has been summoned to court. Contrary to what the general public may believe, process servers are not merely messengers who deliver documents. In actuality, process servers are not only delivering documents, but they are upholding an individual’s constitutional right to due process. This makes the job they do that much more serious as not properly serving an individual can have serious implications in court. As such, many look to hire a private process server to handle the job. However, when it is time to have important legal documents served, many are not aware of how much it costs to have someone served.

How much do process servers charge?

The fee that a process server charges varies. Each state typically has their own standard rates, but the average is anywhere from $20-$100 per job.

What is included in the process server fees?

Process servers will make a diligent effort to attempt to serve the individual. Service is not guaranteed as a process server may make multiple attempts but still not be able to contact the individual to be served. However, most process servers will outline just how many attempts they will make before wrapping up the job. Depending on the company, additional services such as printing documents, court filing, and retrieving documents may either be value added services or services that have an extra cost.

Additionally, process servers will provide a service affidavit that can be used in court, and many process servers also ensure that it is notarized, if required by statute or rules of court. The notary signature on the service affidavit may be an additional fee depending on the server. The service affidavit is the document that proves the individual was served.

What affects the cost to serve someone?

The fee that a process server charges depends on a lot of different factors, but location affects the price the most. Additionally, if an individual is difficult to locate and skip tracing is involved, there will be extra fees to find an address for the person. Extra attempts will also cost more.

Do I need to pay extra to have someone served immediately or asap?

Many process servers will charge a rush fee if you need someone served right away. This is a standard practice as it creates a time demand and defendants are not always the easiest to catch. Some process servers will differentiate different types of serves, whether it is a standard, rush serve, or a same-day serve, with different prices for each.

Do I need to pay the process server up front?

Again, this is a practice that will vary depending on the process server you choose. However, many process servers do require payment up front — or at least partial payment — to ensure that they are compensated for their work, especially if you are a new client. Unfortunately, nonpayment is an industry wide problem that many process servers have had to endure. As a result of that, most process servers make it a practice to collect payment up front, unless they have a bulk service contract agreement or other arrangement.

Fair Pay for Important Work

Not only are process servers providing an important court document messenger service, but they are helping to ensure that individuals are afforded their due process right. Choosing a process server that is certified by NAPPS is an excellent way to ensure the job will be done right and with upfront pricing.

Ready to find the process server for you? Check out our searchable directory of process servers to find your best match.