Home Table of Contents

Rule 31.3. Exceptions to Rule 31.2

Arizona Revised Statutes AnnotatedRules of the Supreme Court of ArizonaEffective: January 1, 2021

Arizona Revised Statutes Annotated
Rules of the Supreme Court of Arizona (Refs & Annos)
V. Regulation of the Practice of Law
A. Supreme Court Jurisdiction over the Practice of Law (Refs & Annos)
Effective: January 1, 2021
A.R.S. Sup.Ct.Rules, Rule 31.3
Formerly cited as AZ ST S CT Rule 31
Rule 31.3. Exceptions to Rule 31.2
(a) Generally.
(1) Notwithstanding Rule 31.2, a person or entity may engage in the practice of law in a limited manner as authorized in Rule 31.3(b) through (e), but the person or entity who engages in such an activity is subject to the Arizona Supreme Court's jurisdiction concerning that activity.
(2) A person who is currently suspended or has been disbarred from the State Bar of Arizona, or is currently on disability inactive status, may not engage in any of the activities specified in this Rule 31.3 unless this rule authorizes a specific activity.
(3) An ABS whose license has been suspended or revoked may not engage in any of the activities specified in this rule, except an ABS whose license has been suspended may engage in activities as expressly authorized by judgment or order of the Arizona Supreme Court, the presiding disciplinary judge, or a hearing panel.
(b) Governmental Activities and Court Forms.
(1) In Furtherance of Official Duties. An elected official or employee of a governmental entity may perform the duties of his or her office and carry out the government entity's regular course of business.
(2) Forms. The Supreme Court, Court of Appeals, superior court, and limited jurisdiction courts may create and distribute forms for use in Arizona courts.
(c) Legal Entities.
(1) Definition. “Legal entity” means an organization that has legal standing under Arizona law to sue or be sued in its own right, including a corporation, a limited liability company, a partnership, an association as defined in A.R.S. §§ 33-1202 or 33-1802, a trust, or a governmental or tribal entity.
(2) Documents. A legal entity may prepare documents incidental to its regular course of business or other regular activity if they are for the entity's use and are not made available to third parties.
(3) Justice and Municipal Courts. A person may represent a legal entity in a proceeding before a justice court or municipal court if:
(A) the person is an officer, partner, member, manager, or employee of the entity;
(B) the entity has specifically authorized the person to represent it in the proceeding;
(C) such representation is not the person's primary duty to the entity, but is secondary or incidental to other duties relating to the entity's management or operation; and
(D) the person is not receiving separate or additional compensation for representing the entity (other than receiving reimbursement for costs).
(4) General Stream Adjudication Proceeding. A person may represent a legal entity in superior court in a general stream adjudication proceeding conducted under A.R.S. §§ 45-251 et seq. (including a proceeding before a master appointed under A.R.S. § 45-255) if:
(A) the person is an officer, partner, member, manager, or employee of the entity;
(B) the entity has specifically authorized the person to represent it in the proceeding;
(C) such representation is not the person's primary duty to the entity but is secondary or incidental to other duties related to the entity's management or operation; and
(D) the person is not receiving separate or additional compensation for representing the corporation or association (other than receiving reimbursement for costs).
(5) Administrative Hearings and Agency Proceedings. A person may represent a legal entity in a proceeding before the Office of Administrative Hearings, or before an Arizona administrative agency, commission, or board, if:
(A) the person is an officer, partner, member, manager, or employee of the entity;
(B) the entity has specifically authorized the person to represent it in the particular proceeding;
(C) such representation is not the person's primary duty to the entity, but is secondary or incidental to other duties relating to the entity's management or operation; and
(D) the person is not receiving separate or additional compensation for representing the entity (other than receiving reimbursement for costs).
(6) Arizona Corporation Commission. A person may represent a legal entity in a proceeding before the Arizona Corporation Commission (“Commission”) if the representation complies with subsection (c)(5). Additionally, a person with expertise in the field of public utility regulatory compliance, public utility accounting or finance, public utility engineering, railroad engineering or safety, or pipeline engineering or safety may prepare, submit, or file with the Commission on the entity's behalf a tariff, rate schedule, engineering report, or other technical or financial document within the person's field of expertise.
(7) Exception. Despite Rule 31.3(c)(3) through (c)(6), a court, the hearing officer, or the officer presiding at the agency or commission proceeding, may order the entity to appear only through counsel if the court or officer determines that the person representing the entity is interfering with the proceeding's orderly progress or imposing undue burdens on other parties.
(d) Tax-Related Activities and Proceedings.
(1) A person may prepare a tax return for an entity or another person.
(2) A certified public accountant or other federally authorized tax practitioner (as that term is defined in A.R.S. § 42-2069(D)(1)) may:
(A) render individual and corporate financial and tax advice to clients and prepare tax-related documents for filing with governmental agencies;
(B) represent a taxpayer in a dispute before the State Board of Tax Appeals if the amount at issue is less than $25,000; and
(C) practice before the Internal Revenue Service or other federal agencies if authorized to do so.
(3) A property tax agent (as that term is defined in A.R.S. § 32-3651), who is registered with the Arizona State Board of Appraisal under A.R.S. § 32-3642, may practice as authorized under A.R.S. § 42-16001.
(4) A person may represent a party in a small claim proceeding in Arizona Tax Court conducted under A.R.S. §§ 12-161 et seq.
(5) In any tax-related proceeding before the Arizona Department of Revenue, the Office of Administrative Hearings relating to the Arizona Department of Revenue, a state or county board of equalization, the Arizona Department of Transportation, the Arizona Department of Economic Security, the Arizona Department of Child Safety, or any county, city, or town taxing or appeals official, a person may represent a taxpayer if:
(A) the person is:
(i) a certified public accountant,
(ii) a federally authorized tax practitioner (as that term is defined in A.R.S. § 42-2069(D)(1)); or
(iii) in matters in which the amount in dispute, including tax, interest and penalties, is less than $5,000, the taxpayer's duly appointed representative; or
(B) the taxpayer is a legal entity (including a governmental entity) and:
(i) the person is an officer partner, member, manager, or employee of the entity;
(ii) the entity has specifically authorized the person to represent it in the proceeding;
(iii) such representation is not the person's primary duty to the entity, but is secondary or incidental to other duties relating to the entity's management or operation; and
(v) the person is not receiving separate or additional compensation for such representation (other than receiving reimbursement for costs).
(e) Other.
(1) Children With Disabilities. In any administrative proceeding under 20 U.S.C. §§ 1415(f) or (k) regarding any matter relating to the identification, evaluation, educational placement, or the provision of a free appropriate public education for a child with a disability or suspected disability, a person may represent a party if:
(A) the hearing officer determines that the person has special knowledge or training with respect to the problems of children with disabilities; and
(B) the person is not charging a fee for representing the party (other than receiving reimbursement for costs).
Despite these provisions, the hearing officer may order the party to appear only through counsel or in some other manner if he or she determines that the person representing the party is interfering with the proceeding's orderly progress or imposing undue burdens on other parties.
(2) Department of Fire, Building and Life Safety. In any landlord/tenant dispute before the Arizona Department of Fire, Building and Life Safety, a person may represent a party if:
(A) the party has specifically authorized the person to represent the party in the proceeding; and
(B) the person is not is not charging a fee for the representing the party (other than receiving reimbursement for costs).
(3) Fiduciaries. A person licensed as a fiduciary under A.R.S. § 14-5651 may perform services in compliance with Arizona Code of Judicial Administration § 7-202 without acting under the supervision of an attorney authorized under Rule 31.1(a) to engage in the practice of law in Arizona. Despite this provision, a court may suspend the fiduciary's authority to act without an attorney if it determines that lay representation is interfering with the proceeding's orderly progress or imposing undue burdens on other parties.
(4) Legal Document Preparers and Legal Paraprofessionals. Certified legal document preparers and legal paraprofessionals may perform services in compliance with the Arizona Code of Judicial Administration. Disbarred or suspended attorneys may only be certified as a legal document preparer or licensed as a legal paraprofessional if approved by the Supreme Court.
(5) Mediators.
(A) A person who is not authorized under Rule 31.1(a) to engage in the practice of law in Arizona may prepare a written agreement settling a dispute or file such an agreement with the appropriate court if:
(i) the person is employed, appointed, or referred by a court or government entity and is serving as a mediator at the direction of the court or a governmental entity; or
(ii) the person is participating without compensation in a nonprofit mediation program, a community-based organization, or a professional association.
(B) Unless specifically authorized in Rule 31.3(e)(5)(A), a mediator who is not authorized under Rule 31.1(a) to engage in the practice of law in Arizona and who prepares or provides legal documents for the parties without attorney supervision must be certified as a legal document preparer in compliance with the Arizona Code of Judicial Administration § 7-208.
(6) Nonlawyer Assistants and Out-of-State Attorneys.
(A) A nonlawyer assistant may act under an attorney's supervision in compliance with ER 5.3 of the Arizona Rules of Professional Conduct. This exception is not subject to the restriction in Rule 31.3(a)(2) concerning a person who is currently suspended or has been disbarred from the State Bar of Arizona or is currently on disability inactive status.
(B) An attorney licensed in another jurisdiction may engage in conduct that is permitted under ER 5.5 of the Arizona Rules of Professional Conduct.
(7) Personnel Boards. An employee may designate a person as a representative who is not necessarily an attorney to represent the employee before any board hearing or any quasi-judicial hearing dealing with personnel matters, but no fee may be charged (other than for reimbursement of costs) for any services rendered in connection with such hearing by any such designated representative who is not authorized under Rule 31.1(a) to engage in the practice of law in Arizona.
(8) State Bar Fee Arbitration. A person may represent a legal entity in a fee arbitration proceeding conducted by the State Bar of Arizona Fee Arbitration Committee, if:
(A) the person is a full-time officer, partner, member, manager, or employee of the entity;
(B) the entity has specifically authorized the person to represent it in the particular proceeding;
(C) such representation is not the person's primary duty to the entity, but is secondary or incidental to other duties relating to the entity's management or operation; and
(D) the person is not receiving separate or additional compensation for representing the entity (other than receiving reimbursement for costs).

Credits

Added Aug. 27, 2020, effective Jan. 1, 2021.
17A Pt. 2 A. R. S. Sup. Ct. Rules, Rule 31.3, AZ ST S CT Rule 31.3
State Court Rules are current with amendments received and effective through 5/15/22. The Code of Judicial Administration is current with amendments received through 5/15/22.
End of Document