Representing Yourself in Court: Appearing in court when you are not represented by a lawyer is called appearing “pro se.” This is a Latin phrase that means “for yourself.” This website provides resources for people who appear pro se in Wilson County Court. It is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney, and you should seek professional legal representation if possible. The statements made on this website are not legal advice and should not be cited as legal authority. You are responsible for complying with all of the applicable rules and procedures in your case. You may appear pro se as a plaintiff (meaning that you filed a lawsuit and are seeking relief from the court) or as a defendant (meaning that a lawsuit has been filed against you). Only individuals may represent themselves pro se. Corporations or partnerships must be represented by a lawyer. A non-attorney parent may not appear pro se on behalf of a child, except to appeal the denial of a child’s social security benefits.
Before you file a lawsuit, you should familiarize yourself with the Rules of Civil Procedure.
These rules apply to every civil lawsuit filed in the federal courts. You should also familiarize yourself with the Local Rules of Practice.
These rules apply to every case filed in this court. You must follow both sets of rules if your case is filed in this court. By law, the employees of the Clerk’s Office are not allowed to discuss your case with you, tell you whether or how specific rules apply to your case, explain what any particular order or rule of the court means, or even tell you when a filing is due. Clerk’s Office employees may provide you with specific court resources or forms that may be useful to you and may give you basic information that is included in your public case file, including copies of documents filed with the court. You can find information about copy requests here. Computer terminals are available for use by pro se litigants in each Clerk’s Office. The Clerk’s Offices are open from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding holidays.
By using this website I Acknowledge and I Understand that I’m responsible for the statements that I make in the document(s) and/or pleadings that I file with this court, and that the same rules apply whether these documents and/or pleadings were filed by an attorney or by a person without legal training. I further understand that should I have any questions about the document(s) and/or pleadings that I have or may file, it would be in my best interest to contact an attorney.
Filing cost and court fees are assessed and are not refundable regardless of the outcome of the case. I understand and acknowledge that my document(s) and/or pleadings may not be considered or may even be dismissed if it/they do not meet the appropriate legal guidelines.