Representation By A Non-Lawyer
CAN A NON-LAWYER REPRESENT THE ACCUSED DURING ARRAIGNMENT?
> No, during the arraignment, it is the obligation of the court to ensure that the accused is represented by a lawyer because it is the first time when the accused is informed of the nature and cause of the accusation against him.
> This is a task which only a lawyer can do.
> But during trial, there is no such duty. The accused must ask for a lawyer, or else, the right is deemed waived. He can even defend himself personally.
MAY AN ACCUSED BE VALIDLY REPRESENTED BY A NON-LAWYER AT THE TRIAL?
> If the accused knowingly engaged the service of the non-lawyer, he is bound by the non-lawyer’s actions
> But if he didn’t know that he was represented by a non-laywer, the judgment is void because of the misrepresentation
N.B: In MTCs, one can defend himself or by a non-lawyer.
WHAT ARE THE CONSEQUENCES IF REPRESENTED BY A NON-LAWYER?
1. He is bound by the rules
2. He cannot raise right to counsel
SUPPOSE X DEFENDS HIMSELF. IS THIS CONSIDERED A PRACTICE OF LAW UNDER THE DOCTRINE IN CAYETANO V. MONSOD?
> No, this is an exercise of a constitutional right.