ProSe Law and Legal Definition

"Pro Se" is Latin for "For Self" or in one's own behalf. You appear "Pro Se" in a legal action when you represent yourself directly in a legal action (in or out of court) and do not have an attorney speaking or writing for you.“Pro-Se” refers to representing yourself in any type of legal matter without the benefit of legal counsel.

"In Pro Per" is a short form of the Latin phrase, "In Propria Persona", or "in the person of yourself." The full term of "In Propria Persona" is hardly ever used in court. A person who is acting In Pro Per is called a Pro Per. The terms Pro Per and Pro Se are equivalent in court.

Every state in United States allows individuals to represent themselves inside the court room or handle their own legal issues without the help of a lawyer. However the courts can impose restrictions on pro se litigation. For example In re Burns, 542 N.W.2d 389, 390 (Minn. 1996), the Court held that the Hennepin County District Court was justified in imposing a one-year restriction on a pro se litigant's communications with the court due to a series of "disruptive proceedings" brought by that party. The lone litigant apparently engaged in ex parte communications which was improper. Even though this decision does not seriously impair the rights of pro se parties to continue representing themselves, it gives additional power to courts to limit abusive conduct by pro se litigants.