How Is Skip Tracing Used in Process Serving?

When legal actions are taken against a person in the United States, they have a right to know about these actions with sufficient advance notice in order to have a chance to build a suitable defense. As such, individuals involved in legal matters must be officially “served” with court papers explaining when, where, and why they must appear in court. Actually completing this process and legally serving papers can sometimes prove to be challenging, however, as individuals who know that they are likely to receive a court summons may attempt to evade being served. What happens, then, if a person stays on the move for an extended period of time and cannot be served?

What Is Skip Tracing?

Process servers use a method known as “skip tracing” to locate evasive individuals who must be served. Derived from the idiomatic expression “to skip town,” meaning to quickly depart, skip tracing tactics are used by bounty hunters, repossession agents, private investigators, lawyers, police, and other professionals to locate subjects whose location is not immediately known.

Skip tracing involves collecting, analyzing, and verifying as much information as possible about a subject. While most skip tracers look to the internet to find an individual, social engineering and surveillance tactics such as calling known associates of the subject are often equally useful ways to locate and serve a person in hiding.

Skip tracing usually involves gaining access to:

  • Phone number databases
  • Credit card applications
  • Criminal background checks
  • Utility bills
  • Tax information
  • Public records
  • Court records
  • Department store loyalty cards
  • Air travel histories
  • Social media accounts

Skip tracing is very much like detective work, as it involves sifting through information for clues, understanding where and how to search for information, and following up on leads. For this reason, it can oftentimes be incredibly difficult for an average person to find someone who is making an effort to remain hidden.

St. Louis Process Server – (888) 658-8081

Service of process must be completed in a legal manner in order to be valid and to avoid potentially disastrous case dismissals. At Markell & Associates, Inc., our St. Louis process servers are licensed investigators and can provide the effective skip tracing services you need to identify and serve even the most elusive individuals. With more than 60 years of combined experience, we have the knowledge and skills to get the results you need.

Call (888) 658-8081 or get in touch with us online today to schedule your free consultation.