Thinking of Representing Yourself?? Pro Se?
The term “pro se” means representing yourself in a legal proceeding. This a valid option however, you need to decide if it is the best option for you. There are many advantages to hiring a lawyer for your case. A lawyer knows how to navigate the legal system where as a pro se litigant most likely has never dealt with a legal matter before. Between the legal jargon, statutes, and procedural rules, a pro se litigant can easily get lost and confused. Unfortunately, very simple mistakes can be disastrous to your case. This is where a lawyer can help guide you through the process as there are many steps that need to be taken.
Here are some things to think about… When do I need to file an answer after being served? Do I have any defenses I can raise? Are there any cross or counter claims I may have? How do I file a response? What types of discovery are needed to help prove my case? What are the protocols for a hearing? What happens if I miss a deadline?
There are many things at risk if you do not file an answer or a responsive pleading timely. You may risk waiving some defenses and/or objections you have. If you do not file any response, the clerk can even enter a default against you. The bottom line is if you do not have the time or knowledge to handle your case it may be in your best interest to hire a lawyer who can help successfully defend you.
The Law Office of Robert Eckard & Associates (LORE) has not been retained for any matter by you until such time as a duly executed retainer is signed by you and an authorized agent of LORE and any retainer deposit paid and returned to us. Nothing contained herein is intended to create an attorney client relationship or be considered legal advice, as such, no conflict of interest shall be presumed in the event LORE is later retained by an adverse party. See Rule 4-1.18 et. al., 2006 Florida Supreme Court.