There’s no need for panic when you’re served with a summary judgment motion. Usually the lawyer on the other side just wants to bully you into a bad settlement. You can bet one of these five approaches will give you solid grounds for opposing it.
Google “pro se litigant” and you’ll see lots of articles for lawyers and judges on how to handle us, but very little on actually becoming an effective pro se litigant. That’s a shame, because civil court dockets these days are filled with cases involving only one lawyer, or none at all. Here’s what being effective looks like, and how to get there.
The clerk has given you a court ordered form to be completed before your court date. Why can’t you just fill out the form and show up for court? Because that form is not designed for real litigation. It’s designed to help your judge clear the docket at the lowest cost in the fastest time. But your case deserves better than that. Your case deserves Courtroom5.
When you’re arguing before a judge who’s in a hurry, risk being thrown out of court. Persistence pays. Take all the time you need to make your case, and don’t let a judge’s impatience dissuade you. You’re not a lawyer, and you don’t have to act like one.
The right to counsel has come to New York City’s Housing Court, where 90% of tenants face eviction without a lawyer. The city will spend more than $90 million each year to ensure a small measure of fairness in these proceedings. Let’s pray the whole country follows suit.