More Fraud in Foreclosure Cases: Florida Investigates Process Servers Practices

The Florida Attorney General’s office (AG), along with State regulators, are investigating two process servicing companies that deliver foreclosure notices to homeowners, on civil allegations of slipshod business practices.

Process servicers are persons who have been certified to administer “service”, that is the official delivery of legal papers on parties, witnesses or other people involved in a case.  Florida process servers must be certified by the court.

In foreclosure cases, Plaintiff banks and other lenders hire process servers to deliver the Summons and complaint, notifying  homeowners that a foreclosure action has been filed against them.  This initial paperwork tells the recipients they must respond in 20 days or the action will proceed.  Failure to deliver these documents to the defendant homeowner, can result in the homeowner losing its home without the benefit of the judicial process.

Slipshod service practices, also known as “sewer service”, is a practice in which process servers fail to deliver the requisite documents while signing Affidavits to the court affirming personal service and acceptance.  In essence, the legal documents are said to have been “dumped into the sewer.”  Unfortunately for debtors, failure to respond to a foreclosure complaint will likely result  a default judgment against you.

State regulators this month began examining Gissen & Zawyer Process Service Inc., of Miami, after receiving numerous complaints including filing questionable statements with the court, back-dating documents and questionable billings. The attorney general also has begun investigating ProVest LLC of Tampa, one of the largest process servicing outfits in the nation, for similar complaints.

Homeowners who think they may have been a victim of “sewer service” by a process server, should contact an attorney immediately, before it is too late.  Rafael A. Gaitan, Esq. has successfully represented numerous civil clients in cases involving improper service forcing the plaintiff’s to perfect service before proceeding, and even convincing the court to dismiss a case all together.

To speak with Mr. Gaitan about your case, please contact him via e-mail at or call our firm at 305.329.1462.