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New York State Professional Process Servers Association

Canons of Professional and Ethical Conduct for Professional Process Servers 

New York State Professional Process Servers Association

Canons of Professional and Ethical Conduct for Professional Process Servers

Introduction

These canons of professional and ethical conduct are recommended as the standard for all persons who serve civil or criminal process in the State of New York regardless of whether the process served is issued from any court within the state, the federal courts, or the courts of other states.  These Canons, in their entirety, shall be binding upon all members of the New York State Professional Process Servers Association.

The purpose of these cannons of professional and ethical conduct is to upgrade the professional quality of the services provided by process servers and, thereby, support the orderly administration of justice and enhance the public, legal profession, and judiciary’s confidence in the integrity of the services so provided.

Canon 1 Personal Standards

A process server shall maintain high personal standards that do no impugn upon the reputation of the process service profession.

Canon 1.1 Exclusion for Criminal Convictions

No person shall be permitted to be a process server who has been convicted of a crime involving moral turpitude unless such record of conviction has been expunged or pardoned, or a certificate of rehabilitation, or like equivalent, has been issued by an appropriate governmental entity.

Canon 2 Professional Standards

A process server shall know and observe all standard that govern professional process service performance.

Canon 2.1 Education and Training

It is the responsibility of a process server to obtain sufficient education and training in process serving so as to be knowledgeable of the statues and courts rules of the jurisdiction from which the process is issued, and of the jurisdiction in which the process is being served.

Canon 2.2 Timely Performance of Assignments

Once having accepted or undertaken an assignment from a client or court, a process server shall strive to be prompt in the execution of the assignment consistent with the requirements of the client and of the relevant court rule or statue.  When an unforeseen or unavoidable event prevents fulfillment of such obligation, the process server shall promptly report his or her inability to complete the assignment to the appropriate person.

Canon 2.3 Proofs of Service

A process server shall promptly execute and deliver to the appropriate person an affidavit, proof or declaration of service, or non-service, as the case may be, in the form and content and within the time required by the court of agency before which a matter is pending and the process issued.

Canon 3 Ethical Conduct

A process server shall not engage in unethical conduct

Canon 3.1 Impropriety and Conflict of Interests

A process server shall do all things possible to protect the rights and confidentiality of a client, and of any person to whom legal process is directed.

Canon 3.3 Unauthorized Practice of Law

All process servers are bound by the rules governing the practice of law and shall, accordingly, refrain from the unauthorized practice of law.

Canon 3.4 Misrepresentations

A process server shall not misrepresent himself or herself as a law enforcement office, an officer of the court, or other such similar title unless that person has been so designated and appointed by a court or governmental agency, and is in the actual performance of duties related to such appointment when the representation is made.

Canon 3.4(a) Identification Cards

Any identification card displayed by a member, in the performance of his or her duty, shall not bear any unauthorized title, seal, logo or emblem inferring that a member is a law enforcement officer, an officer of the court, or other governmental position, unless that person actually has that title, and is authorized to use such seal, logo or emblem.  In all instances, a member shall avoid the appearance of impropriety in the use of any such card.

Canon 3.5 False Statements

A process server shall not falsify or misrepresent the facts surrounding the delivery of legal process to any person or entity.

Canon 4.0 Duties to Association Members

It shall be the duty of a member of the New York State Professional Process Servers Association to not engage in, nor suffer others to engage in any activity detrimental to another member or associate member of this association.

Canon 4.1 Respect of Clientele of Fellow Members

Each member agrees to handle work sent to him by another member in a professional and ethical manner. 

Canon 4.2 Employees of Members

No member of this Association shall employ or sub-contract to a person who has been determined to have violated these Canons, or who does not meet the requirements set forth herein.

Canon 4.3 Exchange Work

Each member agrees to handle work forwarded to him by another member in a timely, professional and ethical manner consistent with these Canons.

Canon 4.4 Financial Responsibility

Each member shall promptly pay to another member the agreed upon for services rendered unless other specific arrangements have been made.  No member shall withhold submission of a proof, affidavit or declaration of service in exchange for payment.


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