CS/HB 291

A bill to be entitled
2An act relating to service of process; amending ss. 48.021
3and 48.27, F.S.; authorizing certified process servers in
4certain counties to serve writs of possession in actions
5for possession of residential property; amending s. 83.62,
6F.S.; authorizing a landlord to select a certified process
7server to serve a writ of possession; requiring a
8certified process server to provide notice of the posting
9of the writ to the sheriff; conforming provisions;
10providing an effective date.
12Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
14     Section 1.  Subsection (1) of section 48.021, Florida
15Statutes, is amended to read:
16     48.021  Process; by whom served.-
17     (1)  All process shall be served by the sheriff of the
18county where the person to be served is found, except initial
19nonenforceable civil process, criminal witness subpoenas, and
20criminal summonses may be served by a special process server
21appointed by the sheriff as provided for in this section or by a
22certified process server as provided for in ss. 48.25-48.31.
23Civil witness subpoenas may be served by any person authorized
24by rules of civil procedure. A writ of possession in an action
25for possession of real property under s. 83.62 may be served by
26a certified process server as provided in s. 48.27.
27     Section 2.  Subsection (2) of section 48.27, Florida
28Statutes, is amended to read:
29     48.27  Certified process servers.-
30     (2)(a)  The addition of a person's name to the list
31authorizes him or her to serve initial nonenforceable civil
32process on a person found within the circuit where the process
33server is certified when a civil action has been filed against
34such person in the circuit court or in a county court in the
35state. Upon filing an action in circuit or county court, a
36person may select from the list for the circuit where the
37process is to be served one or more certified process servers to
38serve initial nonenforceable civil process.
39     (b)  The addition of a person's name to the list authorizes
40him or her to serve criminal witness subpoenas and criminal
41summonses on a person found within the circuit where the process
42server is certified. The state in any proceeding or
43investigation by a grand jury or any party in a criminal action,
44prosecution, or proceeding may select from the list for the
45circuit where the process is to be served one or more certified
46process servers to serve the subpoena or summons.
47     (c)  The addition of a person's name to the list also
48authorizes him or her to serve a writ of possession in an action
49for possession of real property under s. 83.62 on a person found
50within the circuit where the process server is certified. This
51paragraph applies only to a county as defined in s. 125.011.
52     Section 3.  Section 83.62, Florida Statutes, is amended to
54     83.62  Restoration of possession to landlord.-
55     (1)  In an action for possession, after entry of judgment
56in favor of the landlord, the clerk shall issue a writ to the
57sheriff, or other person selected by the landlord and authorized
58by s. 48.27 to serve process, describing the premises and
59commanding the sheriff to put the landlord in possession after
6024 hours' notice conspicuously posted on the premises. Upon
61entry of judgment in favor of the landlord and issuance of a
62writ by the clerk, the landlord may select from the list for the
63circuit where the process is to be served one or more certified
64process servers to serve the writ. Upon the posting of the writ
65on the premises, the certified process server shall, within 12
66hours after the posting of the writ, provide written notice to
67the sheriff, including the date and time the writ was posted on
68the premises.
69     (2)  At the time the sheriff executes the writ of
70possession is executed or at any time thereafter, the landlord
71or the landlord's agent may remove any personal property found
72on the premises to or near the property line. Subsequent to
73executing the writ of possession, the landlord may request the
74sheriff to stand by to keep the peace while the landlord changes
75the locks and removes the personal property from the premises.
76When such a request is made, the sheriff may charge a reasonable
77hourly rate, and the person requesting the sheriff to stand by
78to keep the peace shall be responsible for paying the reasonable
79hourly rate set by the sheriff. Neither the sheriff nor the
80landlord or the landlord's agent shall be liable to the tenant
81or any other party for the loss, destruction, or damage to the
82property after it has been removed.
83     Section 4.  This act shall take effect July 1, 2011.

CODING: Words stricken are deletions; words underlined are additions.