About half the messages I get are from people asking, “Can a process server wear a badge?”
And the answer is simple. In most cases, yes, a process server can wear a badge.
As long as you’re not impersonating a law enforcement officer, and there’s no local law restricting the use of badges, process servers can and often do wear badges.
In fact, I have a personalized badge that I’ve worn while making serves.
But it’s important to consider the context.
Think about it like this:
Imagine you’re a defendant trying to avoid service. If you see someone wearing a badge walking up to the front door, would you answer it?
Of course not.
And sometimes process servers who insist on wearing a badge make things a lot harder for themselves.
It’s much easier to approach the defendant without a badge, authority demeanor, or any of the usual telltale signs of law enforcement.
That’s why I’m most successful making serves in jeans and a t-shirt. Sometimes I even wear shorts. But I always avoid setting off those red flags.
In the wrong neighborhood a process server wearing a badge can bring a lot of unwanted and negative attention, or the neighbors could even alert the defendant of your approach.
When Should a Process Server Wear a Badge?
That said, there are certainly times when wearing a badge can make things easier, like when serving process in a corporate or government office building.
And in the event a situation escalates and law enforcement respond to the scene, a badge can help identify your position.
I wear mine under my shirt on a chain with a leather badge holder.
It’s ready when I need it, hidden when I don’t.