Time! Time!! – It’s All about Time
This is Part 2 of this Article. For Part 1, click here: Time! Time!! It’s All about Time.
Perceived Lack of Resources
Because of the nature of the beast, you are also going to be seen as having fewer resources. Does that mean anybody gives you a break? Wake up – this is life in the jungle where predators eat the weak. You must learn how to battle the perception of weakness. Again, this involves the careful use of time. You are perceived as poor, distracted, and ignorant by the high and mighty debt lawyers. You must overcome that perception by staying on top of things from the very beginning. You’ll be tested in discovery because motions to compel are time-consuming and boring. But you will be tested in many ways. Stay on top of it!
Notice, too, that perception of lack of resources is different than any actual lack. Their perceiving that you lack resources will cause them to try to take advantage of you (debt collectors) or blow you off so they can get to “more important” things (judges and their office staff). Staying on top of things can reduce the number of tricks they try and the impact of the ones they do try.
Actual or Perceived Lack of Experience
I lump these together because almost all pro se parties are unfamiliar with the law – and expected to be so by the lawyers on the other side and the court. Expect that to mean anybody will help you? Again, get real. It means you will be patronized by the lawyer and ignored (to some extent) by the judge. You must counter this lack of experience through preparation. You should take the time to watch a trial and other court proceedings, and you must also take the time to think through your points and locate authority for the positions you take. You can do all this, but it takes time.
As I pointed out above, the three “faces” of the issue you deal with are time, organization, and discipline. I can’t help you with discipline, but all my materials, and specially the membership, are designed to save you time. The Litigation Manual was created to make you familiar with the process in general, and the motions packs should help you with time at certain critical points. And of course my website in general is a resource.
Two New Products
Two products designed to give further help are the trial binder and the Guide to Legal Research and Analysis. The Trial Binder helps you put the materials you need into the most useful order, while the Guide to Legal Research and Analysis helps you get started on the ways you think about and prepare for your case.