A Strategic Partner




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Surveying The Landscape


The local courthouse, the likely location for your foray into self-representation, is a wealth of information and public records that that can enhance your case preparation.



Court Rooms / Filing Offices

Court Records

License Bureaus

Property Tax / Land Records

Probate Records

Judges Chambers

Court Clerk’s Office

Access to State Law Library



The staff of the court system, from court clerk’s offices to judge’s and other official staffers are not permitted to offer legal advice and counsel to any litigants (as that would be the practice of law), which places the onus of preparation squarely on the shoulders of the pro se. However, many of these staffers are eager to provide whatever help and assistance they can and; will often offer insightful information to direct the pro se to the exactly correct source material or set of procedures to help him or her succeed. Many courts have sought to be more accessible and have provided many self help forms and procedures on web sites and at the clerks counter in the courthouse. Also many self help organizations formed by bar associations and other community groups exist to provide help – Click here for links. 


Clerks and staff might be available to help you work through court dockets and appeal filings and schedules, or help direct you toward the proper court documents to fill out and file, helping to reduce the likelihood that a wrong bit of information or last minute process or schedule change doesn’t jeopardize your rights to access.


Clerks can walk you through claim filing requirements providing you with forms and procedures and can likely offer a list of approved methods to collect a judgment once you’ve won your case in court. What they won’t do is offer an opinion about the merits of your case, or make suggestions regarding elements of it, or advise you whether you should even file your claim at all. They might suggest you talk to a lawyer when questions begin to stray beyond those areas where they are equipped to advise.

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