Pro se folks representing themselves ask judges advice all the time. There is a fine line between asking the judge to clarify or explain something or explain a statute or rule of procedure, but it quickly turn into advice when the judge thinks you are overtly or subtlely asking the judge, "What should I do?" or "What do you recommend?" or "What is going to happen if this happens?"
Judge are neutral
Judges do have a lot of power and can make and do make ridiculous rulings and order all the time. But you will almost never see a judge giving advice. Judges are suppossed to be neutral and not take sides--that is why they sit in the middle of the court room or the middle of the table. Yes they sit at the head of the table or above everyone on the bench, but they are in the middle. The have even more rules than regular attorneys. The cannot give the impression that they are taking sides, they cannot accept big gifts from people, but most importantly they choose sides. So even if the other person is an attorney and you are not, and it seems unfair, it's even more unfair if the judge starts telling you what you should do.
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