It is alarming when non-lawyers try to play lawyer. I see it fairly often and I never see it done with success. I get it, lawyers are not trusted and are not perfect—but those facts do not mean litigation can be done properly by a non-lawyer.
Even small things like case scheduling vary from county to county. In Chisago County, there is a centralized scheduling process. In Hennepin County, more scheduling is done through the judge's clerks. Knowing how to even schedule a hearing is taken for granted, but this sort of unnecessary difficulty creates aggravation, anxiety, and detracts from focusing on the merits.
Another case came down recently with a homeowner attempting to litigate against a roofer on a home in Anoka County. The roofer brought a summary judgment motion. The homeowners, representing themselves, attempted to submit papers for the hearing but did so incorrectly and late. The result: Judgment for the roofer.
Do not make the mistake of litigating without a lawyer. A good lawyer will cost money, but at least you have a better chance of minimizing your loss, potentially even winning, and for sure you will avoid losing due to a procedural error.
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