The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Legal acumen crucial for court

Viewpoint by Season Weeter/reporter

An astonishing average of 80 percent of parties filing petitions in court across the United States are representing themselves pro se with less than 10 percent of pro se parties actually winning their cases.

I was involved in such an experience when a judge asked me if I expected her to treat me differently from any attorney who came before her.

I told her no.

I won’t go into the heartbreaking details of this tedious battle, but three of the six total parties involved were pro se—and all lost all the way around.

It seems that the citizens who have money and can afford attorneys are the ones who prevail in court. After all, look at the O.J. Simpson trial.

Don’t get me wrong, though; the law is not a joke.

I suppose that it may take the average person at least two years or more of reading the laws and code of the states while using Black’s Law Dictionary for reference to grasp and understand the meaning in the words of law.

It’s no wonder lawyers spend eight to 10 years in school!

Straightforward cases can sometimes be handled with this assistance, but more complex and difficult cases, involving many issues of matter, cannot.

The most important lesson to learn is people need to take time to learn their rights.

The study of law should not focus on those who have the financial backing to afford schooling in this field. Curriculums should be implemented at the public school level to provide for an understanding of the law for all citizens.

This type of education could prove to be useful in reducing criminal tendencies by improving edification of our youth and implementing the reality of consequence and ethics in everyday life at an earlier age.

Before attempting to represent yourself in court as a pro se party, research all options such as Legal Aid of Northwest Texas, the Lena Pope Home, Texas Wesleyan Law Clinic and Fathers for Equal Rights. These places have resources to help with wills and bankruptcies as well as civil cases such as divorce and custody of children.

The most important solution, and easiest to accomplish, is to exercise your constitutional rights and become an active voter.

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