Rules and Bylaws

Article III—Dues and Registration: Suspension and Reinstatement

Section 1. Annual Dues

a.

1. Membership dues for the fiscal year from July 1 to June 30 of each year shall be due and payable to the Treasurer on July 1 of each year. Such dues shall be $268.00 for active members, $130.00 for inactive, and $130.00 for judicial members effective July 1, 2014. [Amended April 9, 2013.]

2. Dues for active members who, during any fiscal year, engage only on a voluntary or uncompensated basis, in pro bono practice through or under the auspices of one or more legal service programs recognized for such purpose by the Board of Governors or its designate, and who have filed a statement, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. Sec. 1746, of their undertaking to engage only in such practice and their assignment of any attorney's fees recovered to the legal services program involved, shall be the same as dues for inactive members.

3. A member may become an inactive retired member on a non–dues paying basis by certifying (a) that he/she (i) has been an active member of the Bar of the District of Columbia for five years (two years of any combination of inactive or judicial membership may be substituted for one year of active membership to satisfy this requirement); (ii) has been engaged in the practice of law in the District of Columbia or elsewhere for a total of twenty-five (25) years; and (iii) has retired from the practice of law, or (b) that he/she is totally disabled and is thus unable to practice law.

b. Any increase of dues shall not take effect until forty-five (45) days after action by the Board of Governors.

c.

1. Any person who is sworn into the Bar between July 1 and December 31 inclusive shall pay a full year's dues; those members who are sworn in between January 1 and April 30 inclusive shall pay one-half the annual dues. Any member who is sworn in after April 30 shall not be required to pay any dues until the following fiscal year.

2. If a member changes status from active to inactive or judicial during the year, there shall be no refund of dues. A change of status from inactive or judicial to active shall require full dues if the change is made on or before December 31, and one-half of the annual dues if the change is made after that date, less any amounts previously paid for that year. There shall be no refund of dues if a member resigns or is suspended for any reason.

A. If a member seeks to change status from inactive to active after such attorney has been in inactive status for five (5) years or more, such attorney shall complete the Course on the District of Columbia Rules of Professional Conduct and District of Columbia Practice (Mandatory Course) and shall submit certification of completion of the Course at the time of the request for status change, or as otherwise determined under Section 1(c)(3)(C) for eligible members.

B. If a member who has previously completed the Mandatory Course is required by the provisions of Section 1(c)(3)(A) to complete the Course again and does not wish to attend one of the regularly scheduled sessions, he/she may request that this requirement be met by use of videotape of the Course, provided by the District of Columbia Bar. A member who requests compliance by this means shall (i) submit a written request for refresher compliance; and (ii) submit a Certificate Concerning Discipline from the Office of Bar Counsel, which certifies that the member has not been suspended for cause or disbarred by any disciplinary authority, and that there are no complaints or charges against the member pending before any disciplinary authority. In all instances, the determination of qualification by the Chief Executive Officer[2] shall be final.

C. A member who qualifies for completion of the Course by refresher compliance shall also complete a written test on the content of the Course provided by the District of Columbia Bar. The test shall be completed within one year from the date that the member's request for refresher compliance is approved.

D. A membership status change for a member who qualifies for refresher compliance shall not become effective until all of the conditions of this Section have been met. [Amended June 9, 2010] 

Section 2. Suspension for Nonpayment of Dues

a. If the annual dues of any member have not been received or postmarked by July 15 of the year in which the dues are due and payable, the Treasurer or his/her delegate shall send on forthwith to the member notice that his/her dues have not been paid, that a late charge of $30.00 has been added to the unpaid dues, and further, that unless any unpaid late charges and any unpaid dues are received or postmarked by September 30, the membership of such member shall be, and hereby is, automatically suspended pursuant to this Section. In the event of suspension, the Secretary or his/her delegate shall notify the clerks of the Court of Appeals and the Superior Court of the suspension. [Amended June 26, 2008]

b. Newly admitted and reinstated members will be invoiced for annual dues in the same month in which they are admitted or reinstated. If the annual dues of any newly admitted or reinstated member are not received or postmarked sixty (60) days after the date of his/her initial annual dues notice, the Treasurer or his/her delegate shall send to the member notice that his/her dues have not been paid. If the dues of the member have not been received or postmarked no later than ninety (90) days from the date of the initial annual dues notice, the Treasurer or his/her delegate shall send forthwith to the member notice stating that a late charge of $30.00 has been added to the unpaid dues. Unless the dues and late charge are received or postmarked no later than one hundred twenty (120) days from the date of the initial annual dues notice, the membership of such member shall be, and hereby is, automatically suspended pursuant to this Section. In the event of suspension, the Secretary or his/her delegate shall notify the clerks or the Court of Appeals and the Superior Court of the suspension.

Section 3. Reinstatement After Suspension for Nonpayment of Dues or Failure to Register

a. Any member suspended pursuant to Section 2 (a) or (b) above for failure to pay dues or file a registration statement shall be reinstated by the Chief Executive Officer upon (i) submission of a written request for reinstatement; (ii) submission of a registration statement, if suspension was for failure to file such; (iii) payment of all due but unpaid dues and all due but unpaid late charges for the year in which the suspension occurred, dues for the current year if applicable plus a reinstatement fee of $50.00 (except that the reinstatement fee is waived for the period July 1, 1999, to December 31, 1999); (iv) submission of certification of completion of the Course on the District of Columbia Rules of Professional Conduct and District of Columbia Practice, if such attorney was admitted after July 1, 1994, and has not yet completed the course or such attorney has been suspended for five (5) years or more; and (v) submission of a statement that the member is not suspended, temporarily suspended, or disbarred by any disciplinary authority. In all other instances, reinstatement may be made by the Board of Governors in its discretion and upon such terms and conditions as it deems appropriate.

b. Any member suspended pursuant to Section 2(a) or (b) for failure to pay the late charge shall be reinstated after payment of the late charge if the request for reinstatement is received or postmarked by June 30 of the fiscal year in which the suspension occurred. If the request for reinstatement from suspension for nonpayment of the late charge is received or postmarked after June 30 of the fiscal year in which the suspension for the late charge occurs, the member shall be reinstated by the Chief Executive Officer in accordance with Section 3(a) above. [Amended June 9, 2010].

Section 4. Reinstatement of Inactive (Retired) or Resigned Member

a. Any attorney who has assumed inactive (retired) membership status under Section 1(a)(3) of this Article or has voluntarily resigned his/her membership in the Bar under Section 7 of Rule II shall be reinstated by the Chief Executive Officer to active membership upon (i) submission of a written request for reinstatement as an active member; (ii) payment of current year dues plus a reinstatement fee of $100 (except that the reinstatement fee is waived for the period July 1, 1999, to December 31, 1999); (iii) submission of certification of completion of the Course on the District of Columbia Rules of Professional Conduct and District of Columbia Practice (Mandatory Course), if such attorney was admitted after July 1, 1994, and has not yet completed the Course or if such attorney has been inactive (retired) or resigned for five (5) years or more; and (iv) submission of a statement that the member has not been suspended for cause or disbarred by any disciplinary authority and that there are no complaints or charges against the member pending before any disciplinary authority. In all other instances, reinstatement of a member to active membership may be made by the Board of Governors in its discretion and upon such terms and conditions as it deems appropriate. [Amended June 9, 2010]

b. If an attorney who has been inactive (retired) or resigned for five (5) years or more has previously completed the Mandatory Course and does not wish to attend one the regularly scheduled sessions of the Mandatory Course, he/she may request that the requirement to complete the Course under this Section be met by use of a videotape of the Course, provided by the District of Columbia Bar. An attorney who requests the compliance by this means shall (i) submit a written request for refresher compliance; and (ii) submit proof (similar to the Certificate Concerning Discipline issued by the D.C. Office of Bar Counsel) from all other jurisdictions of which he/she is a member of the bar that the attorney has not been suspended for cause or disbarred by any disciplinary authority and that there are no complaints or charges pending against the attorney before any disciplinary authority. An attorney who is not a member of any other bar at the time of the request for refresher compliance shall submit a statement which certifies that he/she has not been suspended for cause or disbarred by any disciplinary authority, and that there are no complaints or charges against the attorney pending before any disciplinary authority. In all instances, the determination of qualification by the Chief Executive Officer shall be final.

c. An attorney who qualifies for completion of the Course by refresher compliance shall also complete a written test on the content of the Course provided by the District of Columbia Bar. The test shall be completed within one year from the date that the attorney's request for refresher compliance is approved.

d. Reinstatement of an attorney to D.C. Bar active membership shall not become effective until all of the conditions of this Section have been met.

Section 5. Admission After Non-Registration

Any member of the Bar of the District of Columbia Court of Appeals who failed to register with the District of Columbia Bar in accordance with Rule II, Section 2, of the Rules of the District of Columbia Court of Appeals Governing the Bar of the District of Columbia may, upon (i) submission of a signed statement that he/she was unaware of the registration requirements which also meets the requirements of Section 3 of this Article; and (ii) submission of certification of completion of the Course on the District of Columbia Rules of Professional Conduct and District of Columbia Practice, be registered as a member in good standing upon payment of current year dues plus a registration fee of $250.00. Such registration shall be effective retroactively, as of the date of such original eligibility.

Section 6. Retroactive Reinstatement

If the Board of Governors deems it appropriate, it may reinstate an attorney to membership under Sections 3 and 4 above retroactively, as of the date of suspension, assumption of inactive membership status, or voluntary resignation, as the case may be. An appropriate case for purposes of the foregoing sentence shall be only one in which it is apparent that the suspension, assumption of inactive status, or resignation resulted from error or omission on the part of the Bar.

Section 7. Special Legal Consultants

Any person licensed by the District of Columbia Court of Appeals as a Special Consultant shall be treated for purposes of this Article III as an active member and shall be required to pay the same membership dues as an active member.

Section 8. Form of Notice; Deadlines

All notices hereunder sent to a member shall be sent in writing by first class mail. If a notice is postmarked later than the date of the notice, the date of the postmark shall control. The deadline for a date hereunder that may fall in that given year on a weekend or District of Columbia holiday shall be the next regular business day.[2] On March 9. 2010, the Board of Governors approved the change in title of the Executive Director to Chief Executive Officer.