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Filing Without an Attorney

General Information for Bringing a Case on Your Own

If you wish to start a civil action in federal court, but do not have an attorney to represent you, you may bring your case on your own. Bringing a case on your own is called proceeding "pro se." A civil action is the only type of case you can start in federal court and is different from a criminal action which is started by government officials. You do not have the right to an attorney in a civil case and the Court only appoints attorneys in certain circumstances. Because you do not have the right to an attorney and may not be appointed one, you must be ready to pursue your case to completion.The Court and its employees cannot give you legal help or advice. If you file a case pro se, you will have to follow the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and this Court's Local Rules the same as any attorney who represents someone.

Disclaimer: This website contains general information and reference materials to assist you in filing your case. However, this website is not intended to take the place of an attorney's legal advice, and it may not contain the information that addresses your particular case or problem.