Well, it could be a BIT more than a parking ticket.....you could lose important evidence in your case, or if worse comes to worst, have your case dismissed!

Just yesterday, I had conversations with an attorney and one a business owner. Both were complaining about other process serving firms who were late with serving documents and delivering critical case documents. It's unfortunate that I hear this foo often lately....well, not unfortunate for me because I now have two NEW clients.

The question was not about what happens if it is not received or served in time (more on that later) but rather what was up with the apathy (?), inattentiveness (?), lack of intelligence (?), or just general disregard (?) for someone's else's business, livelihood and their own personal commitment to honoring a contract for a specific task. I had no answer as I am not familiar with those individuals.

What I can tell you is what I learned early on, as a legal assistant, working with attorneys. My goodness, I remember the one and ONLY time when I forgot to write an appointment down for the attorney. In this case it was with the Judge and thank goodness the attorney was understanding and was able to reschedule without impact to the case. BUT the sheer terror and the thought of the wrath of the Judge was enough to make me ensure that I paid particular attention to any deadlines. And I do so to this day.

I have seen enough cases that are lost on technicalities such as bad or incorrect information, missed deadlines, missing parties and all sorts of catastrophes. It's enough to freak anyone out. I think in my case I can say that I learned from experience...the role of the attorneys, the role of the court, the role of the process server....etc. 

From those that I have met, almost all process servers have never been police officers or worked in any legal or court capacity prior to becoming a process server. They just go from point A to point B to deliver the papers without the base understanding of the nature of the case involved. Too, same thing with investigators. Talk about a learning curve...I would not want to learn by trial and error and it must make their jobs so much more complicated.

The learn from this may be not to assume anything and to ensure that parties involved are knowledgeable about the role they play and the impact they can have on the outcome.