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Apr 7 2015

Firefly is Looking for More Process Servers

Due to increasing volume, Firefly Legal is adding individual process servers in the Chicago area (Cook County) and in the greater Rockford area (Whiteside, Carrol, Jo Davies, Stephenson, and Winnebago Counties). We are looking for individuals with a PERC or PI License to server our work. Please e-mail randy.mucha@firefly.pro for more information.

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Categories: Firefly News · Process Server

Oct 10 2013

One Stop Civil Process Service Shop

Why hassle with multiple civil process service vendors when Firefly Legal can handle it all for you?

Our clients are among the best and brightest in the business– why? They’re keeping things efficient by using one civil process service company rather than using multiple servers. Firefly Legal offers quality service nationwide and locally- no matter where you need civil process service, we can handle it for you.

Excellent Service

Firefly Legal is a trusted name in the civil process service industry. Our civil process servers have the highest level of reliability, integrity, and excellence. With comprehensive, competitive pricing, we make sure that we’re meeting your needs– both with service expectations and our rates. Firefly’s servers go through a rigorous application process and are continually reviewed for their performance. Firefly doesn’t settle for less than the best process servers, and it doesn’t expect its clients to either.

Experienced

Firefly is a tested and mature organization, having been in business since 1996. It was founded in Chicago as a family business. That family character, and attendant commitments, continue to characterize Firefly’s business values. Beyond that, Firefly knows the process serving business, firsthand, and from the inside out. The members of its senior executive leadership all have extensive experience themselves as process servers. They incorporate this experience and perspective into every aspect of the business.

Comprehensive, Competitive Pricing

All of the following services are included in Firefly’s standard fees: due diligent preparation, service of process, affidavits and reporting, filing necessary documents with local courts, electronic copies of all documentation, electronic billing, access to online case management client portal, and access to a dedicated client services team.

Nationwide

Don’t scramble when you need a server in a count that’s not local to you. Firefly Legal has an extensive network of civil process servers throughout the US– and if our in-house servers aren’t in an area where you need service, we’ve got excellent relationships with vendors who have agreed to work with Firefly under our service requirements. You’ll get the same great service from Firefly without having to deal with a middle man.

We’ve got you covered; we’re nationwide process servers. Let us serve you while we serve your documents.

 

 

 

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Aug 23 2013

Why Process Servers Should be on Involved with Social Media (Pt. 3 of 3)

Social Media: Not Just for Kids

Today we are wrapping up our three-part series on the best social media networks for civil process servers. If you missed the first two installations from earlier this week, be sure to check back as we discussed Twitter and Google+ and some of the benefits of using each network.

What other social media networks do you think civil process servers should use? While we think Facebook can be useful, we’re actually going to go with Linked In.

 

Linked In

Linked in is a social networking site for business professionals. It has a ton of features, and allows you to use some of the same features of Facebook but in a way that’s far more beneficial to those in business.

If that isn’t reason enough to choose this social networking site, here are some other reasons why we think Linked In is great for process servers.

Get Connected

Many of our clients aren’t on Facebook (or if they are, they keep it personal). Linked In provides a professional environment for people to connect where you can have an individual profile. There, you can upload details on your work history, skills, and your purpose for being on Linked In (as an example- maybe you’re looking for people to connect with). The attorney you met at a conference,  may be more likely to connect with you on Linked In than on Facebook because it’s not as personal as Facebook. It’s professional and provides the right atmosphere for people to keep it that way. It’s all business all the time. Plus, with profile pictures, you can more easily recall how you know the individual, as opposed to just having their contact info. It also provides another method for you to reach out to prospective clients.

Groups

This provides a great opportunity and place to have professional, meaningful, and intelligent discussions on your subject/industry of choice. It also also allows you to meet (via the internet) people in your industry with whom you might not otherwise interact. You can share new ideas, get up to date on changes in the industry, and learn more about  your industry if you’re a newcomer. It’s a great place for folks to pitch new ideas and compare results. Here’s a great process server group on Linked In: Process Servers.

Company Pages

Just like on Facebook, you can have a page for your company. This allows you to provide information about your company, services, and locations. The company page also has a status feature where you can post company updates, news articles, and more; these updates can include links and images. Visually, you have the opportunity to post a cover image, as well as pictures next to your services. Like many other social media networks, you are able to analyze the statistics of your company page.

There are many other reasons that Linked In is a great network for civil process servers to join, but we wanted to touch on the features we feel are most beneficial to servers. And so, this concludes our 3 part series on social networks that process servers should use. We covered Twitter, Google+ and Linked In; while these three are great, this list was certainly not meant to be exclusive. Are there others that you find beneficial? If so, let us know!

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Aug 21 2013

Why Process Servers Should be Involved with Social Media (Pt. 2 of 3)

Social Media can be Beneficial

Social Media is new to the legal world, and I predict it’s going to be around for a long time. Though the networks and social media platforms may change, the core conept is here to stay. This week, we’re discussing the current top social media platforms for process servers and those in the legal industry.

To recap Monday’s discussion, we took a look at Twitter and how it can benefit civil process servers, especially as they are always on the move. Some of Twitter’s most beneficial characteristics include that it can help keep you on top of the news, it allows you to network, and you can schedule tweets. Catch up on Monday’s blog to get more information.

 

Today, we introduce the second social media network civil process servers should use, Google+. That’s right! Thought it may seem like a ghost town, Google+ is steadily gaining momentum as one of the fastest growing social media outlets. This blog post from Social Spark highlights 10 reasons why you should be on Google+, but I’m going to discuss the three main reasons why it works best for process servers.

While some may still feel that Google+ has a long way to go, it’s still a valuable social media outlet that is worth using. Here are three reasons why:

+1 For Higher Search Engine Rankings!

Google+ and the +1s that result from users “liking” a post by “+” -ing it strongly affect SEO. The more +1’s that a post/company has, the more likely it will pop up higher in search engine results. The reason is that web crawlers look for relevant information to determine a website’s ranking, and they pay particular attention to +1’s. This is especially beneficial to process servers, and especially local ones. You want your site to appear higher in the results because your potential clients might search “process server in cook county,” or they might even be looking for a specific town, such as “civil process server in Rockford.” By being an active participant in Google+, you are giving your associated website more credibility.  You have a higher probability of being contacted for work for the best process server in Illinois, or wherever you work, if you’re on Google+ and getting +1’s.

So please, be sure to +1 this blog post before you go!

+1 Better Mobile App!

Civil process servers are always on the move, delivering papers, stopping by the courthouse to file documents, and then swinging back to the firm to deliver affidavits. Google + has a mobile app that is not only fast, but it’s also user friendly. You don’t have to worry about stalled loading or loading errors with this app; it works seamlessly and looks even better if you’ve got an Android phone.

+1 Google Hangouts!

Network with your peers or industry professionals in Google Hangouts. Google hangouts combine chatroom features with the ability to get together over video or voice. If someone isn’t at the hangout you can leave them a message. This is definitely one of the most unique features, as no other social media outlet really has a feature quite like this.

There you have it! Google + is an up and coming social media outlet that is sure to be a driving force in the future. Do you want to jump on the bandwagon later or be a trailblazer now? Still hungry for G+ info? Here’s a neat infographic that highlights 20 (+) positive features of Google +.

Thanks for reading! Stay tuned because Friday we’ll reveal the third social media outlet that process servers should be on. Can you guess what it is? Let us know on Twitter or G+!

 

 

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Aug 15 2013

Civil Process Servers: Does Your Server Make the Grade?

Civil process service, to some, is a relatively simple procedure. A third party individual serves court documents (effectuating civil process service) unto an individual to notify them of legal proceedings, allowing them to respond. This carries out due process. Paperwork is filed, and it’s done.

But is it really that simple?

Consider the increased scrutiny and regulation changes that have recently been implemented in the industries in which civil process servers operate. The pressure to meet deadlines, the needed ability for process servers to work with a firm’s technology, and the absolutely imperative need for good service has certainly changed the game for the average process server.

Civil process service is not as simple as just delivering papers; there’s a whole lot more at stake. With that in mind, there are a few things to watch out for- and to make sure that your civil process servers make the grade.

Licensed & Informed

Though not all states require civil process servers to be licensed, there are many that do. If you need service in a state that requires process servers to be licensed, make sure that they have taken the steps to obtain the required licenses for civil process servers. All Firefly Legal process servers are licensed where required.

Beyond licensure, check to see if your process server is involved in civil process service associations. By staying involved in these organizations, such as NAPPS and ILAPPS, to name a couple, servers are more easily kept up-to-date with the changing industry. Firefly Legal’s Randy Mucha is on the executive board at ILAPPS, which helps to keep all Firefly Legal process servers apprised of new regulations or process updates.

Reputation & References

A longstanding, established positive reputation is important. Does the company you’re considering working with have a reputation for excellence? Is there a record of the company having ever engaged in sewer service? Can you find quality references who would make a recommendation on behalf of that company or server? These things matter. Think about the qualities that are important when looking for an internal candidate and apply those to who you would choose for a process server.

There are far too many civil process servers out there who serve with integrity, honesty, and within the provisions of the law, to choose a server who decides to take the easy way out. Don’t risk your reputation with someone who isn’t worthy of your trust- put it with a company that stands behind their work and will help you

Evaluations vs. Incentives

While a review process is a great thing, requiring or providing incentives for servers to meet a specific quota for serves may encourage dishonest behavior. If a server has to serve a set amount of papers in a given time frame, they may feel rushed and not take the time to carry out the job as it should be done.

These are just a few red flags to watch out for- can you think of any others? Let us know. Connect with us on Twitter, Linked In, Google +, or Facebook.

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Aug 9 2013

10 Ways to Keep Civil Process Service Clients Happy

As anyone who is involved with civil process service knows, the concept of serving papers is a simple one, but the business of it can be pretty complicated, especially if it handles civil process service nationwide. Here are 10 ways Firefly Legal stays successful and keeps their civil process service clients happy.

1. Know & Abide by Civil Process Rules & Regulations 

Not much is worse for a client than to send documents out for service and not have the server abide by the state’s regulations.  Not abiding by rules can jeoparidize not only the service, but the clients’ case, as well. At Firefly, our Civil Process Supervisor, Randy Mucha, is always on top of civil process rules and regulations, which vary by state and can change. He is a member of the executive board on ILAPPS, the Illinois Association of Professional Process Servers. He stays up to speed with what’s going on in civil process service in Illinois, as well as in all of the other states we service. Beyond that, Randy makes sure that our civil process servers, and any vendors we work with, are aware of the regulations and  that they abide by them.

2. No Cutting Corners

In this business, ethical, honest process servers are highly important. We don’t cut corners, and we don’t promise the world. Our servers take detailed notes that get included on the affidavit. They make multiple attempts if they’re not able to reach the defendant. Our civil process servers are diligent, hardworking, honest, and professional. We don’t tolerate rude behavior, and we don’t tolerate sloppy service. For us, it has to not just meet the minimum standards, but the service we provide has to be top notch.

3. Regular Self-Reporting

It’s easy to say that our servers are top notch, but it’s another thing to prove it. Firefly conducts regular self-reporting to make sure that everything we do is up to par. We keep track of serve times, non-serves, and a number of in-office quality controls. Beyond our own reporting, we also provide our clients performance reports. It’s important to us that our clients know we’re listening, and we’re paying attention.

4. Firefly Respects & Listens to Clients 

At Firefly, we see our clients as business partners. We’re on their side. When they need something done, we’re happy to do it. When last minute changes are imposed by our clients’ clients, we take action right away to get on board and to make our clients’ jobs easier. Recently, one of our largest clients told us “Thanks for getting this in place- for the record, I’m pretty sure you were the last of our vendors to hear about this, and the first to deliver a testable product. I really appreciate your prompt attention!” Whether it’s a change our IT department needs to complete, or a regulation change that must be communicated to our servers, we adapt with urgency.

5. We Don’t Rush Our Clients

When a potential client is considering using us, we understand that it’s a big decision. There are a lot of logistical changes that have to be made, and we know that’s not an easy switch. Instead of rushing our potential clients, we allow them to breathe. We try to be easy to work with and flexible. When the time does come that they want to switch to us, we make sure to carefully listen to their needs and implement them accordingly. We don’t rush through the on-boarding process, instead, we take the time to work through all of the questions. When we start processing work, things go much more smoothly.

6.  Open Communication

When our clients have questions on the status of service or need an update for their client, we make sure that we don’t leave them in the dark. Once we receive documents, we provide our clients with a confirmation. They know we’re ready to work on them. We also provide our clients multiple ways to get in touch with us: email (status@fireflylegal.com), phone (877-963-3534, option 2), and even with live chat on our website. Additionally, we offer a secure online website in which clients with a login can access their files.

7. Updated Technology

You need to email us documents? No problem. Firefly is up to date on the latest technology. You won’t hear us tell you no. Additionally, our servers are equipped with our own civil process service app. We were one of the first to come out with this technology, and we’ve stayed on top of it. Additionally, we offer our clients a secure online website to use to check the status of their files, print invoices, and download affidavits.  Our IT team can also build a bridge to make sure documents are transmitted seamlessly.

8. We Go the Extra Mile

At Firefly, our servers and court filers make sure that they are doing their job above and beyond what they’re paid to do- because they want to. We have a family atmosphere, which we talked about in our last blog post. Our court filers can pick up on a schedule that our clients dictate, not the other way around. Our filers offer to help, wait or whatever they can do to make things easier for our clients. Our servers are available when our clients need rush services. Our servers are prepared if they’re needed in court, and we follow up to make sure that they’ve done well. We work hard, and we’re proud of it.

9. We Admit When We’re Wrong

We’re human. Though we would love to tell our clients that we’re never going to make a mistake, we know that’s just not true. We try to stay on top of things so we can intervene before mistakes happen, but sometimes they do. When that happens, we own up to our mistakes and learn from them. Any time something doesn’t go as planned, we look at it as a learning experience where we can gain something positive from the experience. We’ve found our clients appreciate our accountability. We don’t engage in the blame game, and we make sure our clients’ needs are met- bottom line.

 10. We Stand By Our Service

We’ve been in the business since 1996, and we wouldn’t be in it if we weren’t passionate about what we do. We care about our clients. We know that we’re carrying out due process. We’re about honesty, integrity, fairness and good old fashioned hard work. And we stand by it. If our clients are ever unhappy with our service, we evaluate the situation and see where things went wrong. We welcome open lines of communication. If we made a mistake, we admit it, fix it, and make sure our clients leave the situation satisfied with the outcome. If that means giving them their money back or trying the serve again at no charge, we do it. We’re not afraid to stand by our service.

These are the ways we keep our clients happy. What feedback have you heard from clients? Let’s talk about it. Comment here or let us know on Twitter or Facebook. We’re listening!

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Aug 1 2013

Continued Support for Process Server Safety Laws

Firefly Attends IL Rep Kay Hatcher’s Summer Soiree

The event 

Last evening, Firefly Legal’s Jennifer Dlugolecki, Director of Business Development, and Randy Mucha, Civil Process Supervisor and ILAPPS Treasurer, attended Illinois State Representative Kay Hatcher’s Summer Soiree. The soiree was held at the Hampton Inn in Aurora. Representative Hatcher also announced during the soiree that she will not be running for a 4th term when her current term expires. IL Rep Kay Hatcher began her term in January 2009 and is currently assigned to the following committees: Accountability & Administrative Rev; Appropriations-General Service; Human Services; Transportation: Vehicles & Safety (Republican Spokesperson); Tourism & Conventions (Republican Spokesperson); Public Utilities; Veterans’ Affairs; Transportation: License Plates; Transportation: Sign.

Why did we attend?

Representative Hatcher, along with many other legislators, was instrumental in implementing an Illinois law that makes it a felony to assault a process server. Her support and hard work is much appreciated, and in return, we wanted to personally thank her.

After increased attacks on process servers occurred in 2010, it became apparent that this legislation was necessary. The bill was sponsored by Senator Mike Jacobs (D-Moline). Co-sponsors included Sen. John G. Mulroe (DChicago), Sen. Antonio Muñoz (D-Chicago), Rep. Sidney H. Mathias (R-Arlington Heights), Rep. Kay Hatcher (R-Yorkville), Linda Chapa LaVia (D-Aurora). It was signed into law by Governor Quinn on August 12, 2011. The law makes it a felony to assault a process server when they are attempting to carry out due process.

civil process

Firefly Civil Process Supervisor & ILAPPS Treasurer Randy Mucha and IL Rep Kay Hatcher

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Jun 12 2013

IL Association of Professional Process Servers Appoints Randy Mucha as Treasurer

On June 12, 2013, during the Illinois Association of Professional Process Servers board meeting,  Firefly Legal’s own Civil Process Supervisor Randy Mucha was appointed to the position of Treasurer of ILAPPS. This position was previously held by current Firefly Legal President Keith McMaster.

ILAPPS is an association of professional process servers who operate in compliance with the Illinois Code of Civil Procedure and all State laws of Illinois. Firefly Legal has been a charter member since the association’s inception.

ILAPPS, first formed in 2010, was created to promote the safety and interest of process servers in Illinois, which it still stands for today. Additionally, ILAPPS seeks to “provide education and training to improve the skills of professional process servers in Illinois and to educate lawmakers on issues that are important to the functions and duties of professional process servers in Illinois.”

ILAPPS is currently working on introducing legislation to allow process servers access to gated communities and buildings with restricted access, and the organization is working on creating an educational program for Illinois Process Servers. As an executive board member, Randy will play an integral role in the association and in making positive changes in the process serving industry.

Randy is a graduate of Lewis University’s Criminal Justice program. He also holds a master’s degree in Organizational Leadership from his Alma mater.  Before coming to Firefly, Randy was a sworn Law Enforcement Officer for 20 years; eight of those years he was a K9 handler. At Firefly, Randy is the Civil Process Supervisor and liaison to approximately 1,000 process servers and vendors nationwide.

Firefly has always maintained a membership as well as participated in conference events for state process server associations. Randy recently attended the ILAPPS annual conference in Springfield along with Vincent Searafini of Firefly  in April.  Additionally, Firefly Legal is a proud member of ILAPPS, NAPPS, and FAPPS.

Check out ILAPPS and see what else the association does.

ILAPPS TREASURER

Randy Mucha, Civil Process Supervisor and Vendor Liaison of Firefly Legal; Current Treasurer for ILAPPS

Firefly Legal is a nationwide professional civil process service company, headquartered in Mokena, IL. Established in 1996, Firefly has grown to include 16 offices throughout Illinois, Florida, Ohio, and South Carolina.With well over a decade of experience, Firefly is a smart, effective, and proactive civil process company with the technology to handle today’s service and the personality to handle it well.

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Categories: Firefly News · General · Process Server

Jan 14 2013

Process Serving in 2013: Firefly Legal Raises the Bar with SOC 1 Certification

It is no secret that compliance is on the minds of anyone in the process serving and legal services industries. And being cognizant of the increased scrutiny, Firefly Legal, a national process serving company headquartered in the south suburbs of Chicago, began a self-initiated audit in October 2012 to further to provide additional confidence to its clients and stay on the forefront of changing industry standards. The audit concluded in January 2013, resulting in Firefly Legal obtaining the SOC 1 certification.

Currently, the SOC 1 certification, which is the certification standard in security, is not required of process serving companies. The audit covers security measures, processing integrity, and confidentiality.

Some have speculated that obtaining this certification may become standard in the coming years as more stringent regulations in the legal field are rapidly increasing, specifically in foreclosure and collections industries.

When Firefly Legal first announced that they would be undergoing the audit, Firefly Legal founder Ken McMaster, explained that going through this process was a necessary move to make Firefly stand out as a leader in the industry. He commented that “We need to provide our clients with a higher level of confidence. They need to know, without a doubt, that any work placed in Firefly’s hands is handled with the utmost in security and protection.”

To obtain this certification, a third-party company verifies that security, including information technology and relevant controls, internal business processes and controls, and confidentiality, among other points of evaluation, are sound.

Firefly Legal’s Vice President Matt Massa acknowledged that Frost Cummings Tidwell Group, the company that completed the audit at Firefly Legal, “conducted a thorough and detailed audit.”

This certification is similar to the well-known SSAE 16 (SOC 1) certification, which is a certification audit that more closely looks at financial reporting. Historically, this certification was reserved for those in the finance industries; however, the critical need for quality assurance in all industries has caused the certification to evolve and move beyond just the finance industry to incorporate and serve anyone needing quality assurance in their operations.

Headquartered in Mokena, Illinois, Firefly Legal is a national associate legal services company specializing in process serving, skip traces, court filing, document retrieval, and loss mitigation.

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Dec 17 2012

Threat Against Process Server Hits Home

A routine day of civil process service involves a lot of patience. Defendants occasionally avoid service. Some reluctantly take the papers. And some pull out guns.

Of course, it is the hope of every process server that they never have to deal with that. But the latter is exactly what happened to one of Firefly Legal’s process servers. Even when taking all precautions for personal safety, our process servers sometimes walk into situations not knowing the outcome.

In this case, our server walked up to the front door of a defendant’s home. Through the glass door, he could see that a woman was home. She saw the server and answered the door, whereupon the server identified himself and his purpose. But instead of accepting or even just refusing the papers, the woman pulled out her gun, aimed it at our server’s chest, and told him to leave.

Our server did leave and later returned with the sheriff to get the job done, but the bottom line is that these types of situations shouldn’t happen. If a process server clearly identifies him or herself and their purpose, making it clear that there is no intention of physical harm to the individual and that they are simply there as messengers of the court, the server should be respected. Their lives or personal safety should never be threatened.

But situations like this one are happening because the repercussions aren’t strong enough for those who choose to take that course of action. Adequate regulation is necessary to protect those within our industry.

The work that a process server does is not glamorous, and it’s difficult to do.  They face the unknown, but they do it bravely and without fear. They are trained to know how to handle unfavorable situations as they arise. They don’t just drop papers and run; they perform a service by delivering court documents properly, efficiently, and with appropriate documentation. Our servers have families, many of them have kids, and they have their own lives outside of their job. Appreciate the work that process servers do. Understand the difficulties that they face. And stand up for them.

This incident is just another reason to promote reform so that there are the laws on the books protecting our servers. Firefly Legal has always supported the reform of legislation with regard to server’s safety.  Firefly supported legislators such as IL State Representative Bill Cunningham who has helped to reform laws protecting process servers.  Illinois was the first state to make assaulting a process server is a felony, which went into effect January 1, 2012. Unfortunately, this type of legislation is not present throughout the US.  Do your part and make your voice heard so that we can promote legislative reform to protect process servers in every state, not just in Illinois.


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Headquartered in Mokena, IL, Firefly Legal is a national associate legal services provider, offering process serving, skip tracing, court filing, document retrieval, and loss mitigation. To find out more about our civil process service or any of our national associate legal services, contact us at 877.963.3534.
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Categories: Firefly News · Process Server