Legal Challenges to Attorney Admission Rules in Federal District Courts Seek to Avoid Multiple State Bar Exams

In Bradwell v. Illinois the Supreme Court “held that the right to practise law in the state courts was not a privilege or immunity of a citizen of the United States.”1 A concurring opinion emphasized, “The paramount destiny and mission of women are to fulfil the noble and benign offices of wife and mother. This is the law of the Creator.” The Supreme Court in the 1980s held the opposite—that an attorney’s opportunity to practice law is a fundamental right because lawyers have a constitutional duty to vindicate federal rights and to champion locally unpopular claims.

Federal District Court Bar Admissions: A Systemwide Policy of Local Autonomy

Since the beginning, the district courts of the United States have maintained separate bars, each exercising independent authority to admit attorneys to practice before them, regulating the professional conduct of such attorneys, and taking disciplinary action (including disbarment) whenever such attorneys violate applicable standards.

Operation Amendment: Military Spouse Attorneys For Legal Licensing Accommodations

The rules governing the practice of law in any state are stringent and exist to protect both clients and the integrity of the profession. However, those complicated and intricate rules preclude military spouse attorneys from participating in the profession.

Attorney Admission Practices in the U.S. Federal Courts

Does your state follow the common law rule against perpetuities, does it use the common law rule with the “wait-and-see” modification, has it adopted the Uniform Statutory Rule Against Perpetuities, or does it follow a different standard? Is the punishment for burglary in your state enhanced if the premises was inhabited or if the entry was at night? Even if you are a licensed attorney, there is a good chance you do not know these answers off the top of your head.

Attorney Admissions: Identifying and Working with Local Counsel and Pro Hac Vice Admissions

At some point during law school, typically during trial advocacy and professional responsibility, burgeoning future lawyers learn two important concepts—pro hac vice and consulting local counsel when not licensed to practice in a particular state. Some practicing attorneys may never have to address these items; however, there is a significant number who do. For example, military spouses, corporate counsel, and trial attorneys encounter these issues on a regular basis.

Regula Pro Lege, Se Deficit Lex: The Latin Sapience of High Judges

With any discussion of Latin in the law you will hardly need to stem the flood of enthusiasm from most attorneys, but at common law regula pro lege, si deficit lex was doctrine (if the law is inadequate, the Latin maxim serves in its place). Sir James Mackintosh described Latin maxims in the law as “the condensed good sense of nations.” Black’s Law Dictionary states in the preface, “Latin still supplies a formidable stock of legal terms and phrases. The ability to use a Latin phrase correctly and pronounce it with authority and consistency belongs to the equipment of a well-rounded jurist.”

Police Reform As Seen Through The Eyes of a District Judge

During the past two decades, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has filed in federal courts a plethora of civil rights actions seeking police reform against cities and counties across the nation. The state of New Jersey, the commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and the territory of the Virgin Islands are among those sued. From 1994–2012, only eight such proceedings were commenced in the federal courts. Since then, in only four years, the DOJ has commenced 13 such actions, which has exponentially increased law enforcement reform nationwide.

Common Problems With E-Discovery—and Their Solutions

Discovery is all about being able to track down information that is pertinent to your case. A few decades ago, this meant getting your hands on paper documents, but of course, that’s not true anymore.

A Practical Guide to the Procedure of Civil Forfeiture

There is no way around this: forfeiture procedure is a mess. Scattered throughout the U.S. Code, it has neither a coherent structure nor an umpire clause to resolve multiple, easily identified statutory conflicts.


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