Self Help Desk
Many people having legal matters in Athens-Clarke County do not seek the assistance of a lawyer and instead choose to be a self represented litigant. The Board of Trustees of the Athens-Clarke County Law Library seeks to facilitate the processing of these cases by maintaining the Self Help Desk, which provides access to forms, resources, and assistance for many types of legal actions, most commonly divorce.
The Athens-Clarke County Law Library staff is committed to quality service and recognizes the importance of public access to legal information. Although the staff may assist with legal research resources, they cannot give legal advice or interpret the law for Self Help Desk patrons. If a self represented litigant has questions about the law, they should seek the advice of a lawyer.
- The purpose of the Self Help Desk is to provide citizens with access to forms, research tools, and assistance if they wish to pursue a legal action pro se, that is as a self represented litigant without a lawyer.
- The Self Help Desk is operated as a service of the Athens-Clarke County Law Library, located on the third floor of the Athens-Clarke County Courthouse, 325 East Washington Street.
- Normal hours of the Law Library are 8am to 5pm, Monday through Friday, with live assistance available through Court Administration, located in Suite 400 of the Courthouse.
- The Law Library has partnered with the University of Georgia Public Service Practicum to provide assistance to indigent patrons who plan to file for divorce pro se.
Self Help Forms
Visit the Self Help Forms page for links to a variety of important legal forms.
Self-Help Desk Disclaimer
The Athens-Clarke County Courthouse has a self help center in the Law Library located on the 3rd Floor that can provide free legal help to people who do not have a lawyer. For some courts, the services are limited, and the self help center may be able to help you with only a few issues. In other courts, the self help center may be able to offer more extensive information and/or assistance.
The rules for self-help centers are the same as with any of the courts:
- The self-help center lawyer (or staff member) is not YOUR lawyer. He or she works for the court and is a lawyer who can help people who do not have their own lawyer.
- You do not have attorney-client privilege with the self-help center lawyers and staff. What you say to the staff or lawyer is NOT confidential.
- Both sides in a civil law suit can get help from the self help center.
Filing for Divorce in Athens-Clarke County: What to expect and how the process works video
ACCGov and the Access to Justice Initiative have produced an informational video available on YouTube covering the process for filing a divorce in Athens-Clarke County. This informational video featuring Judge Lisa Lott is part of a project of the Athens Access to Justice Initiative and the Athens-Clarke County Government. It was filmed with funding from the Community Foundation of Greater Louisville and the University of Georgia School of Law..
Understanding Georgia's Record Restriction Law
This short (15 minute) video features ACC Municipal Court Judge Ryan Hope explaining how the criminal record restriction process works in Athens-Clarke County, Georgia. The video is for informational purposes only and was made possible with generous funding from the Community Foundation of Greater Louisville, KY, and the University of Georgia Office of Service Learning.