Guilford County’s Sheriff Discusses Delivery Service for Summary Ejectment

The High Point Regional Association of Realtors’ Property Management Council and Chapter 56 of IREM organized a meeting with Guilford County Sheriff BJ Barnes on April 16 to discuss service of summary ejectment notices, and they were kind enough to open up the meeting to PTAA’s members as well.  You can find a very nice summary of the meeting over at the IREM blog and there really is some interesting information there:

1 – The number of Guilford County Summary Ejectment Case Filings from July 1, 2011 through June 30, 2012 was 18,363.

2- Currently, the Sheriff’s Department has eight Deputies assigned to delivering service and two supervisors.  Additionally, they have two deputies who are only assigned to deliver and execute Writs.

3 – The Sheriff’s Department says that the actual cost of delivery is $45, but they only charge $30.

The Sheriff did not argue with members’ assertion that perhaps only 10% of summary ejectment paperwork was personally served (leaving a staggering 90% served by posting).  This is problematic for property managers because when wetake people to court we have two possible winning outcomes:  If the Summary Ejectment Paperwork is either hand delivered to the tenant OR the tenant shows up in court, then we can get a Judgment for Possession of the property AND a Money Judgment.  *The Money Judgment will follow a tenant on their credit report. * 

 If the tenant does NOT show up in court OR the Summary Ejectment Paperwork is NOT hand delivered (it is “Posted” on the door of the property), then the Property Manager will only gain possession of the property…

It should be noted that when the cost of service increased from $15 to $30 a few years ago, that the Guilford County Commissioners withheld $7.50 of that increase for their budget.  That $7.50 could have been used by the Sheriff to hire six more Deputies.  Sheriff Barnes is going to meet with the new Guilford County Manager regarding this and other issues.  Hopefully, he will be able to convince him to reallocate this money to the Sheriff’s Department.