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Learn About Court Procedures

If you represent yourself in court, you will be expected to follow the same rules that lawyers must follow.

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1) Texas Rules of Civil Procedure. The rules that deal with the way that cases go through the civil trial courts in Texas are called the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure. Read these rules and be familiar with them. If you do not have access to a computer, you can find the rules in a law library, the State Law Library, or possibly in a public library.

2) Texas Rules of Evidence. If you are representing yourself in court, study the Texas Rules of Evidence. These rules deal with how to present evidence in a trial and whether evidence can be admitted. (When the evidence is “admitted,” that means the court has decided to let the evidence be used.) If you do not have access to a computer, you can find the rules in a law library, the State Law Library, or possibly in a public library.

3) Local Rules. Some courts have special local rules. Check to see if the court where your case is filed has local rules. If the court or county has a website, you may be able to find the local rules there. If you do not have access to a computer, call the clerk’s office and ask whether the court has local rules.

The Rules of Civil Procedure and Rules of Evidence are complicated. Lawyers have had years of training on how to use them, so if there is a lawyer on the other side of your case, it would be a good idea to get a lawyer for yourself.