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Myself and a few other people are pro se plaintiffs in a lawsuit. Do we all need to show up at every hearing and the CMC?

San Jose, CA |

One of the plaintiffs will be traveling abroad during the CMC and won't be able to appear.
Is it possible for just a couple of us to appear at hearings and the case management conference?

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Attorney answers 4


Each of you is representing yourself. None of you can represent any of the others because you are not attorneys. Therefore, each of you needs to appear at each hearing. There are some hearings where telephone appearances are permitted. Usually, one can appear at a CMC via telephone, but it must be arranged by the telephone appearance company used by that court. Usually it is a company called "Courtcall" which is at You should call the clerk to confirm that the court will allow one or both of you to appear by telephone.

THIS RESPONSE IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE. IT HAS BEEN PROVIDED FOR EDUCATION AND INFORMATION ONLY. Mr. Mann is licensed to practice in the State of California. There is no implied or actual attorney-client relationship arising from this educational exchange. Moreover, the facts provided by you were not sufficient to allow Mr. Mann to advise you specifically regarding what you should or should not do. You should speak with an attorney licensed in your state, to whom you have provided all the facts before you take steps that may impact your legal rights. Mr. Mann is under no obligation to answer subsequent emails or phone calls related to this matter, or to take any action whatsoever.



thank you!!

Lloyd Stewart Mann

Lloyd Stewart Mann


You are very welcome.



Each party to a lawsuit must appear at hearings; directly or through counsel. As none of you are represented, each of you must appear.

The foregoing is for general information purposes and does not establish an attorney-client relationship.


Just to add one thing to what Mr. Mann and Mr. Langer said. The parties do not have to appear at hearings that do not concern them. If the defendant moves to compel further discovery from one plaintiff, the other plaintiffs need not show up at the hearing.



thanks for the clarification


While I agree with Mr. Mann I also would like to suggest an alternative. You could contact a local attorney who has an office close to the courthouse and ask that individual to make a special appearance for you. In regard to your representation he or she could personally appear or make arrangements to appear by telephone. It takes very little time and the cost is reasonable.

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