Do I need an attorney?

The Divorce Hearing Officers strongly recommend that every party to a divorce action consult with an attorney before deciding whether or not he or she needs an attorney. The law permits you to represent yourself in a divorce action, but there are several disadvantages to this course of action. Parties who represent themselves are referred to as "self-represented" parties. You can overcome the disadvantages of being a self-represented party through research and preparation, but it will take a great deal of time. You will be held to the same standards as an attorney in terms of complying with the rules and statutes, and you will not be given any leeway because you have chosen to represent yourself. If you are a self-represented party, it is vital that you keep the court informed of the mailing address and telephone number at which you can be contacted. Please see Pennsylvania Rule of Civil Procedure (Pa.R.C.P.) 1930.8. The court has a specific form that you can use to report this information. You can download a copy of the Entry of Appearance as a Self-Represented Party form from the Court Forms Page.

Show All Answers

1. What is a Divorce Hearing Officer?
2. How should I dress in court?
3. How should I act in court?
4. Do I need an attorney?
5. What if I don't have an attorney?
6. What if I can't afford an attorney?
7. How can I check on the status of my case?
8. If I have something I want to tell a judge or a divorce hearing officer, should I call them or write them a letter?