Anyone who has ever served in the field of process serving, private investigation, etc., has likely needed to collaborate with another professional in the field. Oklahoma Judicial Process Servers does so all the time. Depending upon the other private investigators or process servers one is working with, this can prove to be relatively enjoyable experience or can turn out to be a major headache. Indeed, all too often in this competitive field, other process servers and private investigators have an inclination to get greedy, bossy, and sometimes even steal customers. This, of course, hurts all parties concerned and is extremely detrimental to the client.

A process server or private investigator who steals other clients or who makes sanctimonious, unreasonable demands excessive amounts of for money will quickly obtain a poor reputation in the field. No attorney, business, process serving or private investigation company, or private individual wants to continue a business relationship with others who try to cheat, steal and gouge. Unfortunately, whereas collaboration can work to the benefit of everyone concerned, not everyone is willing to collaborate and work together.

Likewise, sometimes a process server in another state (i.e., California) that an Oklahoma process serving company has hired to assist them will sometimes try to start interacting directly with the client. This is almost always done without permission and with the intention to undermine the Oklahoma process server’s own business. Once again, this short term gain will eventually cause much greater losses for the private investigator or process server who is busy stealing clients.

One way to combat this is to have each process server or private investigator hired in sign a non-compete agreement. These contracts can specify that the other process server or private investigator is not allowed to contact the specific client(s), have someone else do so, etc. If they do, the process server or private investigation firm that hired them can sue them and win damages in court, etc. However, some Oklahoma process servers would contend that getting this accomplished is easier said than done.

Not all process server and private detective agencies are willing to sign such agreements. These professionals might be “insulted” that one would even ask them to consider such a thing. However, those private investigators and process servers that are unwilling to sign them are often the most likely to go behind the back of those who first hired them anyway. Thus, their unwillingness to do so should serve as an enormous red flag, and all process servers and private investigators should avoid enlisting their help.

Other Oklahoma City private investigators and Yukon, Oklahoma process servers might note that tracking the people they have hired to determine whether or not they are going behind their backs to steal clients is quite difficult. Fortunately, by doing “quality assurance checks” on them occasionally, one can usually find out who served the papers. Thus, an Oklahoma process server goes online and checks to see who has been filling out the affidavits of service for an certain attorney. If the person listed on the affidavit of service for the new cases is the same one the Oklahoma process server originally hired in to do the work, then he or she is violating the terms of the agreement.

While trying to track whether private investigators have engaged in this unethical practice can be a bit more difficult, a significant red flag might emerge whenever the Oklahoma private investigation firm sees a sudden drop in what is otherwise steady business from a customer. This drop, of course, could be coincidental (i.e., the attorney is ill), but it could also require a bit of investigation on the part of the private investigator who hired the staff member or independent contractor to begin with.

Trying to monitor the activities of process servers and private investigators can prove to be a very time consuming task. Therefore, taking great care in who is hired in is extremely important. Performing background checks, asking for references, etc., can be vital. Any process server or private investigation agency that refuses to provide references is one to avoid.

While even the best and supposedly most trustworthy process servers and private investigators can betray the trust of those they have hired in, anyone who steals clients from others is seldom prosperous for very long. Reputations spread, and other process servers, private investigators, law firms, governmental agencies, and more will find themselves much less likely to want to provide business to those unscrupulous individuals. It is far better for all concerned to play fairly and to treat one another with respect and dignity.