Say No to High Court Endorsement of Pro Se Forms

, Texas Lawyer


Should the Texas Medical Board distribute prescription pads to all Texans to prescribe their own medication because doctors are expensive? Of course not, writes Jonathan J. Bates. Likewise, the Texas Supreme Court should not give its imprimatur to legal forms for pro se litigants. Many unwary pro se litigants, lured into a false sense of safety by the Supreme Court's endorsement, would inevitably suffer self-inflicted damage.

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What's being said

  • ghost of elvis

    This supreme court has greatly expanded sovereign immunity, narrowed the tort claims act, and, assisted by the legislature, virtually eliminated medical malpractice and traditional tort law. It has hurt not only the rank and file lawyers but also the ordinary citizen whose rights are systematically being eroded. In all areas where power and citizens collide the court has almost invariably sided with government, big corporations, insurance carriers, and corporate medicine. In 95% of the cases one can read the style of the case and know what the ruling will be. Reading the case is not necessary. These judges run for office claiming to be strict constructionists and conservative jurists who do not "legislate from the bench." It is a lie!! No greater aggregation of activist judges has ever been assembled. It is a scandal that the lawyers for the most part stand by silently while their clients are harmed and their practices destroyed. If a statute has any conceivable construction that will help the powerful you can bet that the court will adopt it, and if it does not have such a construction the court will manufacture one out of whole cloth. If you doubt this read the Frankla case In over 40 yeaars of practicing law I have never had occasion to be ashamed of my brethern, but what I see now makes me sick. So, it should come as no surprise to the family law bar that the court will not be content with letting lawyers represent clients and letting those who don't want to hire a lawyer do what they would have to do if they decided to remove an appendix, fill a tooth, repair a car, rewire a house or otherwise venture into an area where they have no expertise. I hope I live long enough to see the pendulum swing back to the middle.

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