Who Should be Served?
In Florida, statue 48.081 outlines the order of individuals that someone seeking to sue a corporation must follow to correctly serve process. Preferably, the president, vice president or other head of the corporation should be the first individuals sought to serve. If neither of those individuals are accessible, then the cashier, treasurer, secretary or general manager is the next tier to accept service. In the event none of the previously mentioned individuals are available to accept service, service may be on any director or agent residing in the state.
How do you find a Corporation’s Agent?
Typically, a corporation is required to register with the state of in which it resides. When it registers, it must designate an agent. This information can be found through the state’s secretary of state website. In Florida, this information can be easily accessible on SunBiz.
Can you Serve a Corporation by Mail?
Service of process in Florida can be made in person as well as by mail. To serve a corporation in person, the plaintiff should coordinate with the sheriff of the county in which the person to be served on behalf of the corporation is located. If the plaintiff is unsuccessful in serving the corporation by mail, the Florida Division of Corporations accepts substitute service of process. The plaintiff must provide the original and a copy of the court-issued summons, two copies of the complaint, a cover letter indicating why the division can accept service, and proof of attempted service. However, the Division of Corporations will not notify the designated individual of the corporation. Instead, the plaintiff’s attorney must notify the defendant that service has been made on the Division of Corporations.