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University of Utah Library Guides
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Representing Yourself: A Legal Resource Guide for Pro Se Litigants: Home

A resource guide to help pro se patrons at the James E. Faust Law Library find and use legal resources to further their personal legal matters.

The U.S. Constitution guarantees everyone the right to an attorney in criminal actions. However, there is no such guarantee for civil actions, such as divorce, eviction or debt collection. This, coupled with the high cost of legal services, leads many people to choose to represent themselves as a pro se litigant. "Pro se" comes from the Latin phrase "pro se", meaning "for oneself" or "on behalf of themselves."

Proceeding pro se can be a difficult task for anyone who has had little exposure to the legal system. This guide includes links to online and in-person legal resources to help pro se litigants as they navigate their way through the court system.

  A photograph taken from inside the Matheson Courthouse, showing the courthouse rotunda. Through the window you can see blue sky, mountains and Salt Lake City Hall.

How to Use this Guide

The legal resources identified in this guide are not exhaustive. Access to some of these resources, such as print items or specialized databases, may require a visit to the Faust Law Library.

If you have questions about this guide or any of our resources, feel free to send us a chat or email reference@law.utah.edu.

Off-Campus Access

Some resources are only available on-site within one of the University libraries.  These resources are designated with an appropriate icon. Students, faculty, and staff of the University of Utah can access these resources in our library or by using the off-campus access link. 

If you are not a student, staff or faculty member of the University of Utah, you must use one of our computers within our library or the Marriott Library. See the resource key located on each page for additional information

Welcome to Our Pro Se Litigant Resource Guide

Welcome to the pro se litigant legal resource guide maintained by the James E. Faust Law Library at the University of Utah. Here you will find links to online legal research resources, information about local legal clinics, and descriptions of resources only available in the library. Additional online legal research resources may be found on our other links guides:

Federal Legal Resources

Utah Legal Resources

Secondary Legal Resources

Please let us know if you have question or a suggestion for improving this guide!

How to Read a Legal Citation

Trying to figure out legal citations can be daunting at first; there are many numbers and abbreviations you have to know. The Caselaw Research section of our library's FAQ page includes brief instructions on how to read a citation.

Talk With Us!

Do you have a question about our library, our resources, or how to find something? If so, call the number above, send us an e-mail, or chat with us!

A reference librarian is generally available between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Special consultation appointments can be arranged upon request.

Disclaimer

Librarians and other staff members at the James E. Faust Law Library do not provide patrons with legal advice. The information supplied in this guide is not intended to be legal advice and is not a substitute for the guidance of a qualified attorney. Patrons should be aware that the law changes regularly and that they should be researching the current law as it applies to their specific issues.

This guide was created by Felicity Murphy (May 4, 2017)

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