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Grow your business: Serving court documents

Gavel2-resized.jpgProcess serving can be a great way to earn extra income without sacrificing the flexibility and convenience of your current mobile Notary work schedule. Whether you’ve seen the role played out on a legal crime drama, or perhaps you’ve been served papers yourself as part of a legal case, process servers fill a valuable role in serving legal documents to individuals. While licensing standards and fees vary from state to state, process serving can be a great way for Notaries to add an extra service for their clients and generate extra income.

Becoming a process server

The laws regulating process servers vary greatly from state to state, so it’s pertinent to know and follow all state laws. Start by researching whether your state requires specific licensing. Several jurisdictions require fees in order to become a server, as well as other costs such as those incurred for a background check, surety bond, or testing and licensing costs, so be aware that an upfront investment may be necessary to embark on this career opportunity.

Finding work as a process server

“The best way to find work [as a process server], is to network,” says Virginia Notary and Process Server Asiyah Ali. “Utilize LinkedIn and other networking sites to connect with office managers, paralegals, and others that would schedule process servers.”

You can start building a client base by reaching out to local businesses, such as legal firms. State or nationwide associations, which may require annual fees, often provide resources, training, networking opportunities, and valuable directory listings that could provide you with work. Here are a few options:

  • National Association of Professional Process Servers (NAPPS): Requirements include $200 annual dues (incl. $25 application fee), and a minimum of one-year professional experience. The website provides resources, including information on their education seminars and Annual Conference.
  • State Associations: Google your state and keywords “Process Server Association” to find a local organization to join.

Ali suggests offering competitive rates for bulk business as a way to bring in and retain new clients. As your business base grows, solicit positive recommendations and testimonials from satisfied customers, for use in gaining future clients.

Why process serving can be a great option for Notaries

According to the NPSA, process serving is a rewarding career for honest, hardworking and reliable individuals — all of which are qualities inherent to the notarial role.

Self-motived people who are able to work unusual (non-9-to-5) hours and who have good “people” skills are generally a good fit for this role, as it is important to remain calm and professional when serving, as you may experience challenging situations with individuals you are serving. Many Notaries, particularly NSAs or small business owners, are able to add process serving to their list of current client services, offering additional value and convenience for their customers.

“I have several clients for whom I notarize and serve process,” shared Notary Rebecca Kelley in a recent NNA Facebook discussion. Kelley is a private process server for the Superior Court of Arizona. “I love the freedom and self-employment opportunities it allows me.”


Add your comment


17 Jul 2014

The link to How to Become a Process Server in the above article is not working.

National Notary Association

17 Jul 2014

Hello Cheryl. We tested the links in the article and all appear to be working on our end. Please try this URL and let us know if it works for you:

Maria S

17 Jul 2014

Links don't work

National Notary Association

21 Jul 2014

Hello, If you are having difficulty with the links, please try the URL listed above. Thanks! Please let us know if you still cannot access the URL.


19 Jul 2014

When I click on "how to become a process server" it brings me to a page with a drop down menu. Once I click my state I get an error message about the website having a programming error.

National Notary Association

21 Jul 2014

Hello, If you are having issues with the NPSA site, you may wish to contact them directly through the "Contact Us" button on their homepage. Thanks!


14 Jul 2015

That is a problem with the NPSA site, not this one. I hope you people aren't notaries or process servers. Sheesh.

Stephen E Swetz

03 Nov 2015

Still over a year later and this link to How To Become A Process Server is flawed... nothing to see here, keep moving... What I really want to say is "Hello McFly!" Well the good news is that the fool who is paying the fool to be the webmaster of this website umm, umm...

National Notary Association

04 Nov 2015

Thank you for notifying us. We've updated the links in the article.


30 Jul 2016

The links take you to an ASP page that's not functioning.

National Notary Association

01 Aug 2016

Thanks for letting us know! We've removed the broken links from the article.

03 May 2017

would like to receive more information.


28 Mar 2018

The tips for growing my business was good information. Thanks

Samantha A

01 Apr 2019

Serving process will require you to know the CPLR rules for your state. Also every process server needs to get the affidavit that they signed notarized. You cannot notarize your own affidavits so if you are serving the document and you are a notary you cant notarize your own stuff. Serve All New Jersey serves process in the state of New Jersey and if you have any questions please feel free to contact us.


29 Jul 2021

The link above works 👍

Marva T

23 Jan 2023

Hello so as a member of the National Notary association if we want to get into Processor Serving we have to join a separate organization for that? NAPPS?

National Notary Association

24 Jan 2023

Hello. The NNA does not provide services related to process serving. You would need to contact a different professional association if you are looking for services or products specifically for process servers.

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