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SCR 3.503 Reinstatement standards

Baldwin's Kentucky Revised Statutes AnnotatedRules of the Supreme CourtEffective: April 1, 2022

Baldwin's Kentucky Revised Statutes Annotated
Rules of the Supreme Court
III Practice of Law (Refs & Annos)
Effective: April 1, 2022
Rules of the Supreme Court (SCR), Rule 3.503
SCR 3.503 Reinstatement standards
(1) The burden of proof shall rest upon the Applicant throughout the entire reinstatement process to prove by clear and convincing evidence that he/she possesses the requisite character, fitness and moral qualifications for re-admission to the practice of law. Issues to be considered include, but are not limited to, those listed below:
(a) The nature of the misconduct for which the Applicant was suspended; an Applicant for reinstatement shall be held to a substantially more rigorous standard than a first-time Applicant. The prior determination that the Applicant engaged in professional misconduct continues to be evidence against him/her and the proof presented must be clear and convincing to overcome the prior adverse judgment against Applicant's good moral character;
(b) Whether the Applicant has presented clear and convincing evidence that he/she has complied with every term of the order of suspension;
(c) Whether the Applicant has presented clear and convincing evidence that his/her conduct while under suspension shows that he/she is worthy of the trust and confidence of the public;
(d) Whether the Applicant has presented clear and convincing evidence that he/she possesses sufficient professional capabilities to serve the public as a lawyer;
(e) Whether the Applicant has presented clear and convincing evidence that he/she presently exhibits good moral character;
(f) Whether the Applicant has presented clear and convincing evidence that he/she appreciates the wrongfulness of his/her prior professional misconduct, including the Applicant's sense of wrongdoing and conception of the serious nature of the misconduct, and has rehabilitated himself/herself from past derelictions;
(g) The Applicant's previous and subsequent conduct and attitude toward the courts and the practice;
(h) The time elapsed since Applicant's suspension; and
(i) The Applicant's candor in the reinstatement process, including whether the Applicant has timely and completely provided required information and supplemented his/her application for reinstatement throughout the process.
(2) Failure to meet any of the criteria in subsection (1) shall constitute a sufficient basis for denial of an application for reinstatement.
(3) Following a formal hearing, the Character and Fitness Committee shall issue a report containing specific findings whether an Applicant has met his/her burden of proof on each issue listed in subsection (1). The Committee shall, at the formal hearing, inquire fully into all matters at issue, and shall not be bound by common law or statutory rules of evidence, or by technical or formal rules of procedure. The Committee shall receive into evidence the testimony of the witnesses and parties, the evidence of record, any such additional evidence as may be submitted. However, the Committee may entertain the objections of any party to the evidence submitted under this subsection.
(4) When the mental and/or physical fitness of an Applicant pursuant to subsection (1)(d) above is identified as an issue by the Inquiry Commission, Committee, or Office of Bar Counsel, the Inquiry Commission or Committee, for good cause shown, may order the Applicant to submit to a physical and/or mental health examination by a physician or qualified health care or mental health care provider. The order shall specify the purpose and extent of the examination(s). Any reports pursuant to such order shall become part of the reinstatement record and subject to SCR 3.150(6) upon proper motion by the Applicant or the Office of Bar Counsel. An Applicant's failure to comply with such an order shall constitute grounds to deny the application. Cost of the examination(s) shall be paid by the KBA and certified as costs of the proceedings.
(5) Costs of reinstatement proceedings pursuant to SCR 3.501 and SCR 3.502 beyond the amount of any filing fees shall be certified as in SCR 3.450(1) and paid by the Applicant.
(6) If the period of suspension has prevailed for more than five (5) years, and the Committee recommends approval of the application and no appeal is taken to the Board of Governors, or if the Board recommends approval of the application upon appeal from the Committee, the Disciplinary Clerk shall issue a notice of recommended approval to the Board of Bar Examiners. The Board of Bar Examiners shall administer to the Applicant a written examination which includes the subject of professional ethics and 5 of the subjects listed in SCR 2.080(1). A general average score of 75% or higher shall be deemed passing. Any required fees shall be paid by an Applicant prior to taking the examination. The Board of Bar Examiners shall certify the results of the examination to the Disciplinary Clerk and the Court. If the Applicant successfully completes the examination, the Court may, at its discretion, enter an order reinstating the suspended member to the practice of law. However, if the Applicant fails to pass the examination, the Court shall enter an order denying the application.
(7) A suspended member of the Association who desires to resume practice as quickly as possible following a period of suspension may file an application to do so at any time during the last ninety (90) days of the period of suspension.
(8) If the Committee and Board recommend approval of reinstatement with conditions, the Court may include such conditions in any order of reinstatement.
(9) In the event of failure to comply with any conditions imposed by the Court upon reinstatement, the Office of Bar Counsel may:
(a) Request that the Court extend the term and impose additional condition(s); or
(b) Recommend to the Court revocation of the license to practice law.


HISTORY: Adopted by Order 2022-11, eff. 4-1-22
Note: Former Rules of Appellate Procedure (RAP) were amended and redesignated as Rules of the Supreme Court (SCR) by Order of the Supreme Court effective January 1, 1978. Prior Rules of the Court of Appeals (RCA) had been redesignated as Rules of Appellate Procedure effective March 12, 1976.
Sup. Ct. Rules, Rule 3.503, KY ST S CT Rule 3.503
Current with amendments received through March 1, 2024. Some sections may be more current, see credits for details.
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