Rule 32. Organization of State Bar of Arizona
Arizona Revised Statutes AnnotatedRules of the Supreme Court of Arizona
A.R.S. Sup.Ct.Rules, Rule 32
Rule 32. Organization of State Bar of Arizona
2. Mission. The State Bar of Arizona exists to serve and protect the public with respect to the provision of legal services and access to justice. Consistent with these goals, the State Bar of Arizona seeks to improve the administration of justice and the competency, ethics, and professionalism of lawyers practicing in Arizona. This Court empowers the State Bar of Arizona, under the Court's supervision, to:
D. assist this Court with the regulation and discipline of persons engaged in the practice of law; foster on the part of those engaged in the practice of law ideals of integrity, learning, competence, public service, and high standards of conduct; serve the professional needs of its members; and encourage practices that uphold the honor and dignity of the legal profession;
E. conduct educational programs regarding substantive law, best practices, procedure, and ethics; provide forums for the discussion of subjects pertaining to the administration of justice, the practice of law, and the science of jurisprudence; and report its recommendations to this Court concerning these subjects.
3. Admission and Fees. All persons admitted to practice in accordance with the rules of this court shall, by that fact, become active members of the state bar. Upon admission to the state bar, the applicant shall pay a fee as required by the supreme court, which shall include the annual membership fee for active members of the state bar. If an applicant is admitted to the state bar on or after July 1 in any year, the annual membership fee payable upon admission shall be reduced by one half. Upon admission to the state bar, an applicant shall also, in open court, take and subscribe an oath to support the constitution of the United States and the constitution and laws of the State of Arizona in the form provided by the supreme court. All members shall provide to the state bar office a current street address, e-mail address, telephone number, any other post office address the member may use, and the name of the bar of any other jurisdiction to which the member may be admitted. Any change in this information shall be reported to the state bar within thirty days of its effective date. The state bar office shall forward to the court, on a quarterly basis, a current list of membership of the bar.
4. Inactive Members. Inactive members shall be those who have, as provided in these rules, been transferred to inactive status. An active member who is not engaged in practice in Arizona may be transferred to inactive status upon written request to the executive director. Inactive members shall not practice law in Arizona, or hold office in the State Bar or vote in State Bar elections. On application and payment of the membership fee and any delinquent fees that may be due under Rule 45(d), they may become active members. Inactive members shall have such other privileges, not inconsistent with these rules, as the Board may provide. Incapacitated members may be transferred to disability inactive status and returned to active status as provided in these rules.
5. Retired Members. Retired members shall be those who have, as provided in these rules, been transferred to retired status. An active, inactive or judicial member who is not engaged in active practice in any state, district, or territory of the United States may be transferred to retired status upon written request to the executive director. Retired members shall not hold State Bar office or vote in State Bar elections. Retired members shall not practice law in any state, district, or territory of the United States. Retired members may provide volunteer legal services to approved legal services organizations as defined in Rule 38(e) of these rules, except that retired members need not have engaged in the active practice of law within the last five years as required in Rule 38(e)(2)(B)(1) or Rule 38(e)(3) (A). Retired members may return to active status subject to the requirements imposed on inactive members who return to active status, as set forth in subsection (c)(4) of this rule. Retired members shall have other privileges, not inconsistent with these rules, as the Board may provide. Incapacitated members may be transferred to disability inactive status and return to active status as provided in these rules.
6. Judicial Members. Judicial members shall be justices of the Supreme Court of Arizona, judges of the Court of Appeals and Superior Court of Arizona and of the United States District Court for the District of Arizona, and retired justices and judges who are eligible for temporary judicial assignment and are not engaged in the practice of law. Judicial membership status shall likewise be accorded to members of the State Bar who are full-time commissioners, city or municipal court judges, tribal court judges, judges pro tempore or justices of the peace in the state of Arizona not engaged in the practice of law, or justices or judges of other courts of record of the United States or of the several states. Judicial members shall hold such classification only so long as they hold the offices or occupations entitling them to such membership or are retired from the offices or occupations entitling them to such membership, are eligible for temporary judicial assignment, and are not engaged in the practice of law. Judicial members shall be entitled to vote but shall not be entitled to hold office. Judicial members shall have such privileges, not inconsistent with the rules of this court, as the board provides. A judicial member who retires or resigns from the bench and seeks to engage in the practice of law must become an active member subject to all provisions of these rules.
7. Membership Fees. An annual membership fee for active members, inactive members, retired members and judicial members shall be established by the board with the consent of this court and shall be payable on or before February 1 of each year. No annual fee shall be established for, or assessed to, active members who have been admitted to practice in Arizona before January 1, 2009, and have attained the age of 70 before that date. The annual fee shall be waived for members on disability inactive status pursuant to Rule 63. Upon application, the Board of Governors may waive the dues of any other member for reasons of personal hardship.
8. Computation of Fee. The annual membership fee shall be composed of an amount for the operation of the activities of the State Bar and an amount for funding the Client Protection Fund, each of which amounts shall be stated and accounted for separately. Each active and inactive member, who is not exempt, shall pay the annual Fund assessment set by the Court, to the State Bar together with the annual membership fee, and the State Bar shall transfer the fund assessment to the trust established for the administration of the Client Protection Fund. The State Bar shall conduct any lobbying activities in compliance with Keller v. State Bar of California, 496 U.S. 1 (1990). Additionally, a member who objects to particular State Bar lobbying activities may request a refund of the portion of the annual fee allocable to those activities at the end of the membership year.
9. Allocation of fee. Upon payment of the membership fee, each member shall receive a bar card issued by the board evidencing payment. All fees shall be paid into the treasury of the state bar and, when so paid, shall become part of its funds, except that portion of the fees representing the amount for the funding of the Client Protection Fund shall be paid into the trust established for the administration of the Client Protection Fund.
10. Delinquent Fees. A fee not paid by the time it becomes due shall be deemed delinquent. An annual delinquency fee for active members, inactive members, retired members and judicial members shall be established by the board with the consent of this court and shall be paid in addition to the annual membership fee if such fee is not paid on or before February 1. A member who fails to pay a fee within two months after written notice of delinquency shall be summarily suspended by the board from membership to the state bar, upon motion of the state bar pursuant to Rule 62, but may be reinstated in accordance with these rules.
A. Members in good standing who wish to resign from membership in the state bar may do so, and such resignation shall become effective when filed in the office of the state bar, accepted by the board, and approved by this court. After the resignation is approved by this court, such person's status shall be changed to “resigned in good standing.”
B. Such resignation shall not be a bar to institution of subsequent discipline proceedings for any conduct of the resigned person occurring prior to the resignation. In the event such resigned person thereafter is disbarred, suspended or reprimanded, the resigned person's status shall be changed from “resigned in good standing” to that of a person so disciplined. Such resignation shall not be accepted if there is a disciplinary charge or complaint pending against the member.
A. Each active member of the State Bar of Arizona shall certify to the State Bar on the annual dues statement or in such other form as may be prescribed by the State Bar on or before February 1 of each year: (1) whether the lawyer is engaged in the private practice of law; and (2) if engaged in the private practice of law, whether the lawyer is currently covered by professional liability insurance. Each active member who reports being covered by professional liability insurance shall notify the State Bar of Arizona in writing within 30 days if the insurance policy providing coverage lapses, is no longer in effect, or terminates for any reason. A lawyer who acquires insurance after filing the annual dues statement or such other prescribed disclosure document with the State Bar of Arizona may advise the Bar as to the change of this status in coverage.
C. Any active member of the State Bar of Arizona who fails to comply with this rule in a timely fashion may, on motion of the State Bar pursuant to Rule 62, be summarily suspended from the practice of law until such time as the lawyer complies. Supplying false information in complying with the requirements of this rule shall subject the lawyer to appropriate disciplinary action.
4. Formulate and declare rules and regulations not inconsistent with Supreme Court Rules that are necessary or expedient to enforce these rules, and by rule fix the time and place of State Bar meetings and the manner of calling special meetings thereof, and determine what number shall constitute a quorum of the State Bar.
8. Create and maintain the Client Protection Fund, as required by this court and authorized by the membership of the State Bar on April 9, 1960, said fund to exist and be maintained as a separate entity from the State Bar in the form of the Declaration of Trust established January 7, 1961, as subsequently amended and as it may be further amended from time to time by the board. The trust shall be governed by a Board of Trustees appointed by the Board of Governors in accordance with the terms of the trust and the trustees shall govern and administer the Fund pursuant to the provisions of the trust as amended from time to time by the board and in accordance with such other procedural rules as may be approved by the Board of Governors.
D. Elections. Election of governors will be by ballot. Active and judicial members are entitled to vote for the elected governor or governors in the district in which a member has his or her principal place of business, as shown in the records of the State Bar. Active out-of-state members may vote in the district of their most recent Arizona residence or place of business or, if none, in Bar District Six. The State Bar will send ballots electronically to each member entitled to vote, at the address shown in the records of the State Bar, at least two weeks prior to the date of canvassing the ballots. Members will return their ballots through electronic voting means, and the State Bar will announce the results at the ensuing annual meeting. The State Bar's bylaws will direct other details of the election process.
E. Terms of service. Each elected governor shall serve a three-year term. An elected governor will serve on the board until a successor is elected and takes office at the annual meeting. If the board receives notice that an elected governor's principal place of business has moved from the district in which the governor was elected, or that the governor has died, become disabled, or is otherwise unable to serve, that governor's seat is deemed vacant, and the other elected and appointed governors will choose a successor by a majority vote.
F. Term limits. An elected governor may serve three consecutive terms, but may not be a candidate for a fourth term until three years have passed after the person's last year of service. Election or succession to a partial term of less than three years will not be included in calculating a member's term limit.
3. Young Lawyers Division President. In addition to those governors elected under Rule 32(e)(2), the elected president of the Young Lawyers Division will serve as a voting member of the board of governors. The election of the Young Lawyers Division president will be conducted as provided by Rule 32(e)(2)(C), except that only members of the Young Lawyers Division are entitled to vote in that election. The Young Lawyers Division president will serve a one-year term on the board.
A. Public governors. Four governors of the board are designated as “public” governors. The public governors must not be members of the State Bar and must not have, other than as consumers of legal services, a financial interest in the practice of law. Public governors are nominated by the board and appointed by the Supreme Court for terms of three years and begin board service at a time designated by the Court. The Court may decline to appoint any board nominee and may appoint as a public governor a person who was not nominated by the board. No more than two public governors may be from the same district. No individual may serve more than two terms as a public governor. The Court may fill a vacancy in an uncompleted term of a public governor, but appointment of a public member to a term of less than three years will not be included in a calculation of the member's term limit.
B. At-large governors. Three governors on the board are designated as “at-large” governors. At-large governors, who may be former elected, public, or district governors, are appointed by the Supreme Court for terms of three years and begin board service at a time designated by the Court. The Supreme Court may appoint at-large governors to successive terms. The Court may fill a vacancy in an uncompleted term of an at-large governor.
C. District governors. Three governors on the board are designated as “district” governors. District governors must be members of the State Bar, have their main office in the district of appointment, and meet the qualifications set out in Rule 32(e)(2)(B). District governors are appointed by the Supreme Court for terms of three years and begin board service at a time designated by the Court. The Court must appoint one district governor from Bar District Five and two district governors from Bar District Six. No individual may serve more than two terms as a district governor. The Court may fill a vacancy in an uncompleted term of a district governor, but appointment to a term of less than three years will not be included in a calculation of the member's term limit.
6. Removal of a governor. A governor of the board may be removed for good cause by a vote of two-thirds or more of the governors cast in favor of removal. Good cause may include, but is not limited to, conviction of a felony or a crime involving moral turpitude, imposition of a discipline sanction under Rule 60, repeatedly ignoring the duties of a governor, or disorderly activity during a board meeting. A board governor so removed may, within thirty days of the board's action, file a petition pursuant to Rule 23 of the Arizona Rules of Civil Appellate Procedure requesting that the Supreme Court review the board's determination of good cause. The Court will expedite consideration of the petition.
7. Recusal of an attorney governor. An attorney board member who is the subject of either a probable cause order issued pursuant to Rule 55(c)(1)(E) or an agreement for discipline by consent filed under Rule 57(a) must recuse him- or herself from serving on the board pending disposition of the matter.
8. Board advisor. The immediate past president of the board will serve a one-year term as an advisor to the board. The advisor may participate in board discussions but has no vote at board meetings, except an immediate past president may continue to vote if his or her term as an elected board member has not expired. The board advisor, with the assistance of two or more governors chosen by the president, will lead a committee to recruit, recommend, and nominate candidates for the offices of president-elect, vice-president, and secretary-treasurer.
B. President-elect, vice-president, and secretary-treasurer. The board must elect a new president-elect, a new vice-president, and a new secretary-treasurer at each annual meeting. Those newly elected officers will assume their respective offices at the conclusion of the annual meeting at which they are elected, and they will continue to hold their offices until the conclusion of the subsequent annual meeting at which their successors are elected.
D. Successive terms. A governor may not be elected to a second term for any office that the governor has held during the preceding nine or fewer consecutive years of service on the board. However, a governor may serve a partial term under Rule 32(f)(5), either before or after service of one full term.
E. Limitations. The term of a governor chosen as president or president-elect automatically extends until completion of a term as president if his or her term as a governor expires in the interim without their reelection or reappointment to the board, or if the term is limited under Rule 32(e)(2)(F). In either of these events, there shall not be an election or appointment of a new governor for the seat held by the president or president-elect until the person has completed his or her term as president, and then the election or appointment of a successor governor shall be for a partial term that otherwise remains in the regular three-year cycle under Rule 32(e)(1).
3. Duties of officers. The president will preside at all meetings of the State Bar and of the board of governors, and if absent or unable to act, the president-elect will preside. Additional duties of the president, president-elect, vice-president, and secretary-treasurer may be prescribed by the board or set forth in the State Bar bylaws.
(g) Annual meeting. Annual meetings of the state bar shall be held at times and places designated by the board. At the annual meeting reports of the proceedings of the board since the last annual meeting, reports of other officers and committees and recommendations of the board shall be received. Matters of interest pertaining to the state bar and the administration of justice may be considered and acted upon. Special meetings of the state bar may be held at such times and places as provided by the board.
(h) Administration of rules. Examination and admission of members shall be administered by the committee on examinations and the committee on character and fitness, as provided in these rules. Discipline, disability, and reinstatement matters shall be administered by the presiding disciplinary judge, as provided in these rules. All matters not otherwise specifically provided for shall be administered by the board.
(j) Formal Requirements of Filings. All verbatim records and all copies of recommendations, documents, papers, pleadings, reports and records required or permitted by any provision of these rules relating to admission, discipline, disability, and reinstatement may be either typewritten, electronically prepared, or copied by a process that is clear, legible, or audible. An original is not required.
(k) Payment of Fees and Costs. The payment of all fees, costs, and expenses required under the provisions of these rules relating to membership, mandatory continuing legal education, discipline, disability, and reinstatement shall be made to the State Bar. The payment of all fees costs and expenses required under the application for admission to the practice of law, examinations and admission shall be made to the finance office of the administrative office of the courts.
(l) Expenses of Administration and Enforcement. The state bar shall pay all expenses incident to the administration and enforcement of these rules relating to membership, mandatory continuing legal education, discipline, disability, and reinstatement of lawyers, except that costs and expenses shall be taxed against a respondent lawyer or applicant for readmission, as provided in these rules. The administrative office of the courts shall pay all expenses incident to administration and enforcement of these rules relating to application for admission to the practice of law, examinations and admission.
Added Jan. 15, 2003, effective July 1, 2003. Amended June 9, 2003, effective July 1, 2003; Oct. 16, 2003, effective Dec. 1, 2003; Oct. 4, 2004, effective Dec. 1, 2004; June 9, 2005, effective Dec. 1, 2005; Sept. 27, 2005, effective Jan. 1, 2007; Sept. 18, 2006, effective Jan. 1, 2007; Sept. 16, 2008, effective Jan. 1, 2009; Sept. 3, 2009, effective Jan. 1, 2010; Aug. 30, 2012, effective Jan. 1, 2013; Sept. 2, 2016, effective Jan. 1, 2017, subject to the provisions of Administrative Order No. 2016-126.
The implementation of Rule 32(e) will begin in 2019.
A. Elected members under Rule 32(e)(2) will be elected in 2019, and 2019 only, as follows:
Bar District One will elect one governor to a one-year term.
Bar District Two will elect one governor to a two-year term.
Bar District Three will elect one governor to a three-year term.
Bar District Four will elect one governor to a one-year term.
Bar District Five will elect one governor to a one-year term and one governor to a two-year term.
Bar District Six will elect two governors to one-year terms, two governors to two-year terms, and three governors to three-year terms.
Bar District Seven will elect one governor to a two-year term.
Bar District Eight will elect one governor to a three-year term.
B. Appointed members under Rule 32(e)(4) will be appointed by the Court in 2019, and 2019 only, as follows:
The Court will appoint one public member to a one-year term, one public member to a two-year term, and two public members to three-year terms.
The Court will appoint one at-large member to a one-year term, one at-large member to a two-year term, and one at-large member to a three-year term.
The Court will appoint one district member to a one-year term, one district member to a two-year term, and one district member to a three-year term.
C. In 2020, any governor elected or appointed to a one-year term in 2019 may seek re-election or request re-appointment to a three-year term.
D. In 2021, any governor elected or appointed to a two-year term in 2019 may seek re-election or request re-appointment to a three-year term.
E. In 2022, any governor elected or appointed to a three-year term in 2019 may seek re-election or request re-appointment to a three-year term.
F. Rule 32(e)(2)(F) will not apply to terms of less than three years served under this phase-in schedule. Further, any time served on the Board of Governors prior to January 1, 2019, will not be included in a calculation for term limits under Rule 32(e)(2)(F).
[Note to Jan. 15, 2003 amendment:] Rules 32(a)(1) and (2) contain the unchanged text of former Rules 31(a)(1) and (a)(2) as of December 1, 2002.
[Note to Jan. 15, 2003 amendment:] The text of Rules 32(c)-(l) contain the unchanged text of former Rules 31(c)-(l) as of December 1, 2002.
Administrative Order No. 2016-126, dated November 23, 2016, provides the following implementation provisions for amendments to this rule:
“In order to implement amendments to Rule 32(m), 32(f)(1) and 32(f)(2)(D), Rules of the Arizona Supreme Court in an orderly manner,
“IT IS ORDERED that the State Bar Board of Governors provide the Court a proposed public meetings policy for consideration by February 1, 2017 and a proposed public records policy by May 1, 2017. The provisions of these rule changes will become effective upon approval by the Court of each of these policies.
“IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Rule 32(f)(1), reducing the State Bar Board of Governors from five officers to four, will become effective after the June 16, 2017 annual meeting of the State Bar’s Board of Governors. Rule 32(f)(2)(D), preventing officers from serving successive terms in the same office, will become effective after the June 29, 2018 annual meeting of the State Bar’s Board of Governors.”
17A Pt. 2 A. R. S. Sup. Ct. Rules, Rule 32, AZ ST S CT Rule 32
The Arizona Court Rules are current with amendments received through 8/1/18. The Code of Judicial Administration is current with amendments received through 4/15/18.
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