When Not To Serve

When You're at the Right Address

Here are scenarios where even if the individual to be served lives at the address you're attempting, you should NOT serve the documents. Instead, select Attempted and use the options in ABC Mobile to describe the circumstances.

Hang on to the documents if the individual to be served:

  • Is incarcerated (in jail or prison). Note: it IS allowed to serve someone at the jail or prison they are incarcerated.
  • Has filed for bankruptcy (In the case of a collections service).
  • Will not be available for some time - for instance, if the defendant is a trucker on a long delivery route, is on a month's vacation, or is working temporarily in an isolated place.
  • Is deceased, do not serve the documents to anyone. If you find that one is available, ask politely if you could see a death certificate and take a picture of it to submit with the attempt notes.
  • Is living in a nursing home or assisted living facility.

Common Non-Serve Scenarios

  • A current resident confidently stating that the subject is unknown or has moved away, followed by other indicators that the subject does not reside. Whenever possible, try to obtain the name of anyone providing you information and include it in your submission. 
  • A leasing office stating with confidence that the subject moved away (the subject not being on the lease is not enough).
  • A neighbor confirming with certainty that the subject used to reside but moved from the attempted address (the neighbor simply being unaware of who the person is not sufficient).
  • Multiple pieces of evidence indicate an address is vacant. A neighbor saying, "I don't think anyone lives there" is not enough.
  • A phone call from the defendant, stating that they have moved and providing a better address, after submitting a record of the phone call in ABC Mobile.
  • If the address
    • Doesn’t exist, is abandoned, burned down, etc.
    • Is a place of worship
    • Is a nursing home or assisted living facility
  • If a resident is threatening or tells you not to return.
  • If there is a no trespassing sign on the property, after other efforts have been made to determine if the subject resides, such as trying to reach the subject by phone or to speak with neighbors.
  • If customer-specific instructions disallow service at an address. Instead, select "Attempt" then "Other", and "Service not permitted".
    • For example, the address provided may be to a place of employment and given instructions not to serve at place of employment. 

      What should I do if the Subject can't be served at this address?

      Report all the relevant information you can in ABC Mobile.

      Servees are not always at the address we're trying to find them at, and sometimes we can't or would rather not serve them. Non-Service occurs generally when sufficient evidence has been gathered that the subject does not reside and that evidence has been entered into ABC Mobile. It can also occur when we should not serve the individual per court or customer requirements.

      If residents are simply not answering, see the No Contact page on how to proceed.

      Resolving a Non-Residency

      After enough evidence has been gathered or enough attempts made, ABC Legal will produce a Proof of Non-Service, which will be sent for you to sign.

      Returning to a Previously Resolved Address

      You may be asked to return to an address that you previously attempted and resolved in order to find new information. This will be a new job and will pay out again.