District court judges aren't required to inquire without prompting into a pro se plaintiff's mental competence, even where there is evidence of bizarre behavior, the 2nd Circuit ruled. Examining the scope of FRCP 17(c) as it concerns the appointment of guardians ad litem or other protective measures, the court said judges have broad discretion in deciding whether to conduct an inquiry into indigent plaintiffs' competence.
Judges May Decide Whether to Probe Pro Se Competence
New York Law Journal
March 28, 2003