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Can I do this myself?

Pro Se in Minnesota Courts

Pro se is the Latin legal term for self-representation.

The courts are open and accessible to all. In many cases, persons may represent their own interests in court (only a lawyer may represent the interests of another in court). Practicing law without a license is criminally punishable in Minnesota (and every other jurisdiction in the United States, as far as I am aware).

If you are going to represent yourself, then make certain you represent only your own interests and no one else's. You do not want to be accused of practicing law without a license.

You may proceed in probate matters, among other, on your own behalf. Probate matters include guardianship, conservatorship, and probate/estate administration. There are guides to doing so, and the court has some materials that can help, but be forewarned: The court will not, under any circumstances, provide the pro se petitioner or applicant with any legal advice or counsel. The court may, if it chooses, give tips and hints and provide some guidance on procedures. But the court will not tell you what to do or how to do it.

Why is this? In part, I think, because the truth is that the courts frown on self-representers. And not without reason. The fact is that pro se litigants use up more judicial resources than do those represented by attorneys because the pro se litigants do not know what they are doing in almost all cases.

The time and expense it takes for lawyers to clean up the messes that pro se litigants make, while being good business for lawyers, puts a strain on the courts.

The bottom line is: You can represent yourself in Minnesota district court. Will you save any money? Perhaps. Perhaps not. I can't really say with certainty. You're better off with an attorney.

guardian conservator
Service Areas: I am willing to represent clients throughout Minnesota, including St. Louis County, Washington County, Blue Earth County, Chisago County, Lincoln County, Meeker County, Pope County, Rice County, or Stearns County, just to name a few. Whether you are in Minneapolis or Saint Paul, or Buffalo, Granite Falls, Aitkin, Anoka, Detroit Lakes, Bemidji, Foley, Mankato, Ortonville, or New Ulm, I will represent you.