Pro Se Survey - Legal Access

Thank you. We now have enough completed surveys to publish our results. We will be sharing those results very soon. And we will also post our next survey.

This is the first in a series of surveys about access to the legal system. This survey is for pro se litigants to share their information with us, so that we can learn how to help. If you are representing yourself in family or civil court, whether you initiated the case or it was initiated by another, we appreciate your participation.

Many people have participated in our survey in the short time that its been posted. We almost have enough information to draw some tentative conclusions. If you are a pro se litigant, and have a moment to complete our survey, you'll be helping us serve all Florida legal consumers better.

We haven't been able to locate recent or reliable information or statistics about pro se litigants in Florida. As legal document preparers, we often hear stories from our customers about their difficulties in accessing the legal system. With this survey, we are trying to take a more scientific approach so that we may be able to bring about change. We are in the process of developing additional surveys targeted towards other groups - legal document preparers, court personnel, judges, and attorneys.

Completely Voluntary

Participation in our survey is completely voluntary and does not hinge on receiving any services or referrals through our association. We believe that pro se litigants are often at a disadvantage, and strive to help them overcome barriers to legal access. Completion of the survey is confidential.

Please note that all fields followed by an asterisk must be filled in.
Age - which category do you fall into?
over 65.
Gender - are you?
First Name
Last Name
E-Mail Address
Street Address
Home Phone
How did you find this questionnaire?*
Sent to me by a friend.
Sent to me by a legal document preparer.
Found it online.
Are you representing yourself?*
I have in the past
I plan to
What type of case? *
Child custody/visitation.
Small claims.
Did you initiate the case? *
Yes, I am the Petitioner/ Plaintiff.
No, I am the Respondent/ Defendant.
Did you do any of the following before deciding to represent yourself?*
Ask friends or family how to proceed.
Research online.
Visit the law library.
Consult with an attorney.
Ask at the pro se Help Desk at the courthouse.
Call or visit a legal aid center.
Call the Florida Bar referral line.
Ask a clerk of court.
Spoke with a minister or other religious leader.
What did you find most helpful in deciding to represent yourself? *
Talking with family or friends.
Educating myself online.
Research at the law library.
Consulting with an attorney.
Asking at the pro se Help Desk.
A legal aid center.
Advice from a minister or religious leader.
What is the most difficult part of representing yourself?*
Understanding legal information about my issues.
Understanding procedures and rules.
Finding legal information.
Finding someone to answer a question about procedure.
If you chose "other" in the previous question, please explain.
As a pro se litigant, have you found the clerks of court to be:*
Generally helpful.
Generally not helpful.
Neither, they were indifferent.
Some clerks were helpful, others were not.
In your role as a pro se litigant, who did you find to be the most helpful?*
A judge.
A judge's assistant.
A clerk of court.
Someone at the pro se Help Desk.
An attorney.
Why are you representing yourself?*
I believe my legal matter is simple.
I cannot afford an attorney.
I can afford an attorney, but I do not want to spend the money.
Are you using the services of a legal document preparer?*
I have in the past.
I will in the future.

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