Can my brother represent me in court regrading a non-moving traffic violation?

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Can my brother represent me in court regrading a non-moving traffic violation?

I have a court arraignment, however, the court date is on a day when I need to be at my new job in another state. I satisfied obtaining the items for which the original citation was given (car tags and insurance, but I cannot change my work start date and need to know if I may have family represent me in lieu of my physical presence.

Asked on September 7, 2011 under General Practice, Florida

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If your brother is a lawyer, then yes, he can represent you; otherwise, no.

To represent another person, even family, in court, is to practice law; but only lawyers may practice law. Your brother would simply have no legal right to speak on your behalf, and so if he shows and you do not, it would be like no one showed up and you lost be default. Non-lawyers may only represent themselves in court, no one else. If you need someone to represent you, you need an attorney, though it's possible that you may still need to be there for the actual court date. What a lawyer could do is appear for you and try to get an adjournment to another date; or try to settle the matter ahead of time, such as negotating the violation you'll plea to and arranging for you to pay the fine. You should contact an attorney immediately.


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