United States District Court, E.D. Pennsylvania
July 27, 2004.
BOTMAN INTERNATIONAL, B.V.
INTERNATIONAL PRODUCE IMPORTS, INC., ET AL.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: RICHARD B. SURRICK, District Judge
AND NOW, this 27th day of July, 2004, upon consideration of
Defendant Clare Ann Keijer's Motion To Compel Plaintiff's
Attendance And The Oral Deposition Of Its Managing Director, Mr.
Leonardus Bol, In The District, And To Compel Compliance With
Defendants' Request For Production Of Documents Under
Fed.R.Civ.P. 34 (Doc. No. 74), it is ORDERED that the Motion is
The Complaint in this matter was filed on October 15, 1999.
Jeffrey M. Chebot, Esquire accepted service of the summons and
Complaint on October 21, 1999, and undertook representation of
Defendant International Produce Imports, Inc., Defendant Dirk J.
Deijer, and Defendant Clare A. Keijer. On April 28, 2000, Chebot
filed an Emergency Motion to withdraw his appearance on behalf of
all defendants. The Motion was granted the same day. On May 30,
2000, Mark C.H. Mandell, Esquire, entered his appearance for each
of the Defendants, International Produce Imports, Inc., Dirk J.
Deijer, and Clare A. Keijer. Mandell has continued to represent
each of the Defendants and has never moved to withdraw as
On June 18, 2004, Clare A. Keijer, an attorney, entered her
appearance, pro se. On July 22, 2004, Clare Ann Keijer filed the
instant Motion. This Motion seeks to compel a deposition on July 30, 2004, at 10:00 a.m. in Philadelphia and to compel the
production of discovery prior thereto.
28 U.S.C. § 1654 provides as follows:
§ 1654. Appearance personally or by counsel
In all courts of the United States the parties may
plead and conduct their own cases personally or by
counsel, as, by the rules of such courts,
respectively are permitted to manage and conduct
Local Rule 5.1(c) provides:*fn1
An attorney's appearance may not be withdrawn except
by leave of court, unless another attorney of this
court shall at the same time enter an appearance for
the same party.
The Comment to Rule 5.1.(c) notes that this Rule applies when a
party wishes to proceed pro se. A party represented by counsel
may not simply announce that she is proceeding pro se and begin
filing documents. See Dunkin' Donuts, Inc. v. Guang Chyi Lu,
Nos. No. 99-3344, 00-3666, 2002 WL 1471421, at *7 (E.D. Pa. June
25, 2002) (striking documents filed by defendant who was
represented by counsel).
Defendant Clare Keijer has entered an appearance for herself.
However, she is still represented by counsel. Such "hybrid"
representation is improper. See Aluminum Shapes, Inc. v. Paul
Frank Roofing & Waterproofing Co., No. 94-0202, 1994 WL 410507,
at *2 (E.D. Pa. Aug. 5, 1994) ("It is well established that
although an individual may appear before the court pro se, he
cannot appear both pro se and through counsel.") (citing
28 U.S.C. § 1654 & Move Org. v. City of Philadelphia,
89 F.R.D. 521, 523 n. 1 (E.D. Pa. 1981)); see also Dunkin' Donuts, 2002
WL 1471421, at *7; Move Org., 89 F.R.D at 523 n. 1 (holding
that represented parties could not file documents when they had not waived representation by counsel
and counsel had not moved to withdraw). Although Ms. Keijer is
entitled to represent herself, her attorney has not moved to
withdraw as counsel. Section 1654 is clear. Ms. Keijer has no
right to represent herself and be represented by counsel at the
same time. See O'Reilly v. The New York Times Co.,
692 F.2d 863, 868 (2d Cir. 1982) ("[T]he rights of self-representation and
representation by counsel cannot be both exercised at the same
time. . . . [A] party seeking to assert his statutory right of
self-representation must clearly and unequivocally discharge any
lawyer previously retained.") (quotations omitted). Her
appearance is a nullity. Until Mr. Mandell moves to withdraw as
counsel, Ms. Keijer may not proceed pro se.
AND IT IS SO ORDERED.