Shall I Represent Myself in My Legal Matter?
People with conflicts can serve as their own attorney in their matter before any court. This is called being "pro se," Latin meaning "for yourself." Approximately seventy percent of divorcing partners go through the process without help from a lawyer.
In my view, as a cost saving issue, a person can represent herself if: 1) there is nothing at stake which matters greatly to you, 2) if the matter is civil and not criminal, and 3) there is no attorney on the other side. If there is a lawyer representing the person with whom you are having a dispute, you should not attempt to represent yourself.
Washington Law Help provides guidance for non-lawyers representing themselves in various legal matters. Their website offers abundant and detailed free legal guidance for those with the time and ability to pore through it.
If you are considering going pro se, you will want to be aware of unbundled representation. You can hire me, and many other attorneys, to help you on an a la carte basis, for just the tasks you specify. I might, for example, help you strategize your case, review the pleadings you have drafted, help you think out how to argue a matter, practice your presentation before the court and ask you questions a judge might ask you, draft your pleadings, or any other component(s) of your legal matter with which you might wish to get some help. After we have consulted, then you continue representing yourself before the court.