For the right person, becoming a registered process server is a career decision that can have immediate benefits. Better still, it is relatively inexpensive and does not require any particular educational degree, prior certification, or test.
5 Steps to Become a California Registered Process Server
If you already serve more than 10 legal papers a year, you are required under California State law to become a registered process server. If you seek to become a registered process server, you must have lived in California for one year and complete the 5 simple steps below:
1. Complete the Registration Form
Go to your County Clerk or Recorder’s Office to obtain a registration form. Complete the form, but do not sign it until you are in front of the Clerk’s or Recorder’s representative.
You are required to be fingerprinted. You cannot be a registered process server with a felony conviction, unless you have a certificate of rehabilitation, expungement of your record, or a pardon.
Note, there are two possible fingerprinting methods; check with your county about which method is accepted there. The fees for this fingerprinting function are generally no more than about $80, and can be less.
3. $2,000 Bond or Cash Equivalent
You must post a $2,000 bond, which can be obtained from an insurance or surety company for about $50. Alternatively, you may be able to post a $2,000 cash bond.
You will need two passport photographs.
In addition to the fingerprinting fees, there is a basic fee of $134.00 to complete the registration process. Some counties may charge additional amounts.
Completing the Process
After taking care of steps 1-5, go to the County Clerk’s or Recorder’s Office to appear before an official to deliver the registration form, the fingerprint forms, the bond, passport photos, and fees. You will need a valid photo ID.
Since each county may have special or additional forms, rules, and fees, check ahead.
Source: California Business and Professions Code sections 22350 – 22360