Can a process server enter a gated community to serve papers to a defendant without this being considered trespassing?
If so, how would a process server serve papers if he/she can't get access to the community?
Family Law Attorney
It wouldn't be trespassing, but the process server can't serve someone if that process server can't get to them.
Of course, if the person couldn't be served by the process server, the result would be that the plaintiff or petitioner would just serve by publication.
The contents of this answer should be considered friendly advice, not legal advice (I'm a pretty friendly guy), and the answer should not be construed to constitute an attorney-client relationship. If you'd like actual legal advice, call me for a free consultation at 813-635-0222. Also, if you liked this answer as much as my big ego thinks you did, be sure to click the thumbs-up button!
I am a California lawyer, but a process server can employ different methods to enter the gated community, such as waiting until someone causes the gate to open and then entering the community.
Once inside the gate, he/she can serve the defendant. If the defendant is not in the house, the process server may be able to leave the papers with another adult in the house.
If the defendant cannot be served after diligent attempts, the process server may be able to employ alternative service methods.
The above describes permissible methods of service in California. Florida may have similar or different methods of service that are permissible. Consult a Florida lawyer.
This response is for information purpose only and does not constitute a legal advice. This response does not create an attorney-client relationship.
Divorce / Separation Lawyer
Yes, they can enter a gated community; no, it will not be trespassing, and trust me, they find many ways to gain access to places in order to serve people.
You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation since every case is different and not all information is relayed in an online question. The Law Office of Ophelia Bernal-Mora, P.A. is a family & criminal law firm located in Orlando, Florida, we invite you to contact us and welcome your calls at 407-377-6828. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.