Pro Se Federal Civil Litigant Help Line
Sometimes all you need is a little help getting on the right track.
The Help Line offers free, confidential, independent guidance (up to two hours) from a lawyer to move forward in federal civil litigation if you are representing yourself.
- Social Security
- Employment Discrimination
- Civil Rights Violations
- Other Federal Civil Cases
EDWBA Pro Se Help Line attorneys are on call to help you navigate your federal civil case.
Although they cannot represent you, they can help you represent yourself. By using the Pro Se Help Line, you can get free, confidential answers to your questions about federal civil litigation:
- Filing a civil case
- Writing litigation documents
- Understanding deadlines, court procedures, and rules
- Understanding statutes and case law
- Making and responding to discovery requests
In addition to the Pro Se Help Line, the court has the following resources for pro se civil litigants on its website: www.wied.uscourts.gov:
- Click on the Pro Se Guides link for guidance about all aspects of the litigation process and references to additional sources of help.
- Click on the Forms link for civil forms you may need to file.
- Click on the Local Rules link for the special, local rules of civil procedure that govern civil cases in federal court in the Eastern District of Wisconsin.
- Be sure to also refer to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure at http://www.law.cornell.edu/rules/frcp/.
- Other links on that page will take you to information on fees, courthouse hours, and other important information.
Eastern District of Wisconsin Bar Association Pro Se Federal Civil Litigant Help Line
Acknowledgment and Agreement
The Pro Se Federal Civil Litigant Help Line volunteer attorneys can provide you with the following kinds of information on a confidential basis:
- The Help Line attorney can provide general information about what to expect when involved in a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin, including general information regarding court rules, time considerations, and court procedure. The Help Line attorneys are not affiliated with the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin.
- The Help Line attorney can assist you with completing forms and give you guidance on the formal requirements of papers you may file with the court.
- The Help Line attorney can help you understand papers issued by the court or filed by other parties.
- The Help Line attorney can direct you to other resources, but it is your responsibility to pursue those resources.
The Pro Se Federal Civil Litigant Help Line volunteer attorneys provide only short-term limited legal services (up to a maximum of two hours) to those without an attorney. The Help Line attorney is not a substitute for hiring your own counsel and does not have the ability to provide the same services as an attorney that you personally hire. This means that the Help Line attorney will not provide you with any of the following services:
- The Help Line attorney will not provide you with ongoing advice or assistance after the initial consultation, which will not last more than two hours. You should not assume that the Help Line attorney will provide you with services after your initial communication.
- The Help Line attorney will not conduct a factual investigation of your claims.
- The Help Line attorney will not provide a legal analysis of your claims or advise you to pursue a claim or defense; that decision is yours alone.
- The Help Line attorney will not sign any papers or contact any other parties on your behalf.
- The Help Line attorney will not provide you with any services that are not explicitly stated above.
- The Help Line attorney will not maintain any documents or files on your behalf.
I understand that the Help Line attorneys may provide short-term, limited legal services only, as described by this form, and I agree to having discussions with a Pro Se Federal Civil Litigant Help Line volunteer attorney on the terms set forth in this form. I also understand the following:
- The Help Line attorney cannot promise any particular outcome.
- The Help Line attorney will not make an independent investigation of the facts, and is relying on my limited disclosure of the facts given the limited duration of the services provided.
- The Help Line attorney is limited in ways that an attorney that I retain would not be, and it is possible that full representation by counsel could identify options for resolution of legal issues that limited representation by a Help Line attorney will not.
- This document, and in particular the sections outlining the services that the Help Line attorney will and will not provide, states the full scope of the relationship between me and any Help Line attorney that may provide me limited, short-term representation as described.