Costs of Service
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Professional process servers commonly charge from $20-$75 per service, depending on how far they must travel. You can usually get these costs of service added to your judgment if you win, but be sure to remind the judge to do this when you conclude your court presentation. However, a few courts will not give the successful party an award to cover a process server's costs unless the person first tried to have the papers served by the cheaper certified mail approach. Other courts prefer that you don't use the mail approach at all; they feel that it wastes time because too often the mail isn't accepted. Ask the small claims clerk or small claims adviser in your district how the court prefers that you accomplish service and how much the judge will allow as a service of process fee.