Can I Represent Myself in Court?


There may be many reasons why someone would forgo having an attorney represent them in court. While in most criminal cases it is highly inadvisable for anyone to represent themselves in court, however, for a small civil trial, representing yourself is a common occurrence. It may also be cost efficient and less burdensome to rely on others, even if they are professionals.

One of the biggest tips for those who choose to represent themselves in court, consult with a law attorney, such as the Woodlands law firm, Gauntt, Koen, Binney & Kidd. They may be able to assist in a small way, and they may also inform you of how difficult your case may be and whether self-representation would be the wisest decision. This is not to try and persuade you to hire an attorney, but it is important to remember that not all cases are the same and having a professional to help sort out the case will only help you in the long run. While a consultation will still cost some money, it is nowhere near the amount you may have had to spend if a lawyer took on your case right away.

Not only is the trail itself a stressful situation to deal with, but there is more to some cases than simply showing up in front of a judge to claim guilty or not guilty. Some cases require a good amount of paperwork to be filled out and filed to the appropriate courts. If you are recovering from an injury that resulted from this case, it is going to be even harder to represent yourself, fill in proper forms and get them over to the correct buildings. Perhaps in this case, having an attorney on your side will help to alleviate all possible hardships that could arise with the case. Especially if you are recovering, it is important to rest up and focus on getting back to a normal routine and lifestyle. There is no need to add extra worry to your mind.

At this point, if you are still doubting whether it would be in your best interest to hire an attorney, you will want to know how typical trail proceedings proceed. Depending on your case, the general flow of court results in each side making a statement to open with, and then continues with an overview of what they intend to prove in the case. Typically the plaintiff, or the one who filed for the lawsuit, will start, presenting evidence, providing witnesses to be questioned. Afterwards the defendant will be able to cross examine any and all witnesses. After the plaintiff has finished with their presentation, the defense will have the similar presentation with their evidence and witnesses they have gathered. For someone trying to represent themselves, the unfamiliarity of these trials may be overwhelming and could result in a worse conclusion for your case.

So the question of can you represent yourself in court should really be rephrased as, should you represent yourself in court? 

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