Due Diligence Pro Se Litigation and Information Resources

Jurisdictionary – If you are a pro se litigant (representing yourself without the assistance of counsel, more commonly known to counsel as “bareback”) Jurisdictionary is an indispensable tool. Jurisdictionary will teach you everything from courtroom procedure to drafting motions and pleadings. If you are represented by counsel then Jurisdictionary is an absolute must. It will teach you how to handle your attorney. An attorney, should you decide to hire one, is a tool. You should see your attorney and handle your attorney as a tool. If you buy a chainsaw you wouldn’t expect that just because of the fact that you have one that trees will just magically begin to fall in front of you. You should first read the owner’s manual. Attorneys do not come with an owner’s manual. That has to be purchased separately. Jurisdictionary IS that owner’s manual.

Google Scholar – http://scholar.google.com/ Though Lexus Nexus and Westlaw are probably the definitively best sources for supporting case law and law reviews they are extremely expensive to subscribe to and to use. Most people do not have the financial fortitude to invest in these resources making either of them cost prohibitive. Google Scholar is the “poor man’s” Lexus Nexus or Westlaw. It provides white papers, scholarly articles, case law in federal courts and all 50 states of the union, and you can narrow your searches to specify what state your case is in. In each state your search will show results from the higher courts (Appellate and Supreme Courts) Keep in mind that when you cite your supporting case law that only the rulings of the higher courts is controlling in your case. If you cannot fine case law to support your argument in the appellate or Supreme Court, a ruling from a lower court can be cited however it will not control the court. The court can take the decisions of lower courts upon advisement. Simply go to Google Scholar and bookmark this site and use it. Another useful feature is on the search results page. Below each result you will find a hyperlink that says “Cite”. Open the result in another tab and read it. If you find what you are looking for, go back to the results page and click “Cite” and another window will pop up. The case cite will appear and it will be highlighted. Copy the highlighted case citation and paste it to your work document. I really do like this feature.

PACER – http://www.pacer.gov/ PACER is an acronym for Public Access to Court Electronic Records and it is a repository for all federal cases in the United States. You will have to subscribe to PACER but this is a very useful tool if your case is in the federal venue to keep track of what has been filed in your case. Everything that gets filed in a federal case will appear on PACER. Take care to read the terms of use because though you can access anything on PACER you will be charged for downloads. Your PACER account will not be billed until you reach $5.00 and your account is renewed every month. That’s a nice feature for a pay site.

Cornell University Law School – Legal Information Institute (LLI) – http://www.law.cornell.edu/ Cornell University has one of the best research sites of any law school on the web today. The entire United States Code (USC), along with all State’s Statutes, and law review articles and much, much more can be found on Cornell’s site. I have been using Cornell for years and have found that it is kept up to date and very user friendly and I think you fill find the same.

NCSC – http://www.ncsc.org/ The National Center for State Courts is the organization courts turn to for authoritative knowledge and information, because its efforts are directed by collaborative work with the Conference of Chief Justices, the Conference of State Court Administrators, and other associations of judicial leaders. Consequently, NCSC is able to return expertise to the courts in a variety of forms from Web resources to hands-on assistance.  State assessments pay for the distribution of information from knowledge analysts and online sources, available free of charge to state trial and appellate courts and their administrative offices.

Shameless Self Promotion – I recently began writing articles regarding laws that govern mortgages and foreclosures and legal strategies in an effort to dispel some common misconceptions in the same regard. I have been involved in the Foreclosure Defense Industry on a professional level since 2007 and I have learned quite a bit in those years. I have had a bird’s eye view of this industry and as a result I have had the opportunity to see what has worked and what has not worked in courts all across this country. Upon the suggestion of my dearly beloved wife I recently started a wordpress blog site where I have posted and will continue to post my articles. I hope you find my experience and insight into these issues helpful. If you do, please go there and click the like buttons. This will help others find this information and hopefully it will help them as well.

Rule of Law Radio – http://ruleoflawradio.com/ Nothing can surpass a conversation with experts in the field of foreclosure defense especially in a public forum. In 2006 I got involved in radio broadcasting. In 2007 I began broadcasting live talk radio and continue to this day. I co-host Rule of Law Radio every Friday night from 8:00 pm to midnight along with Randy Kelton, and Licensed Private Investigator Joe Esquivel. Please tune in and call in with your questions and comments, and we will be glad to address your issues. This public forum allows others who are listening to benefit from what ever is being broadcasted.

I hope that you find some of these resources helpful in your fight, I know I have. Good luck.

Steve Skidmore

Get Jurisdictionary NOW!!!


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