Notice for pro se Litigants


The records of this Court indicate you are litigating this appeal in a pro se capacity. That is, you are not represented by an attorney and will be personally preparing papers for submission to the Court.

Decisions of the Supreme Court of the United States and of this Court have held that individuals representing themselves who are not attorneys are entitled to have their pleadings viewed in a less restrictive manner than pleadings submitted by attorneys. Accordingly, you will be allowed to present your case in your own written words without strict adherence to technical requirements, as is expected of attorneys.

However, in one regard, you will be strictly held to the requirements of the Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure and the Circuit Rules of this Court, as if you were an attorney. This is in the area of timeliness of your filings. For example, your brief must be filed on the date established by the scheduling order to be issued by the Court. Another example is in responding to a motion filed by the party opposing you. You have seven days within which to respond to a motion (ten days if it was served upon you by mail). You will be expected to adhere to these time requirements and all others in the previously mentioned rules. If any submission of yours is not made in a timely manner it will not be filed. However, if you feel you have good reason for not adhering to the time requirements you may submit your pleading along with a second filing entitled Motion For Leave To File Out of Time. In this second filing you should set forth your reasons for not having met the time requirements and request the Court to file your pleadings nevertheless. You should be aware, however, that these motions are not routinely granted, but are read and evaluated on an individual case-by-case basis.

Notice Pro Se (April 1992)