Admission to Practice R.
Rule 1. General Requirements for Admission
A. No person may be admitted to practice as an attorney and counselor at law in this state unless the person:
2. is of good moral character and fit to practice law;
a. The State Board of Law Examiners will determine that an applicant's moral
character is such as permits a positive recommendation when the applicant's record of conduct
indicates that the applicant is presently honest, trustworthy, diligent, and reliable.
Those traits in an applicant suggest that the applicant is one who, if otherwise
admissible, will properly perform the obligations a member of the bar owes to clients,
the courts, opposing parties and counsel, and the public generally. It is the duty of
the applicant to supply information sufficient to enable the Board to review the
b. When an applicant's record of conduct includes inappropriate behavior - such
example, an instance of any of the items listed below - the Board will make further
inquiry before deciding whether the applicant possesses the good moral character and
fitness to practice law required for a positive recommendation:
(1) unlawful conduct;
(2) academic misconduct;
(3) making false statements;
(4) misconduct in employment;
(5) acts involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation;
(6) abuse of legal process;
(7) neglect of financial responsibilities;
(8) neglect of professional obligations;
(9) violation of an order of a court;
(10) evidence of mental or emotional instability;
(11) evidence of drug or alcohol dependency;
(12) denial of admission to the bar in another jurisdiction;
(13) disciplinary action by a lawyer disciplinary agency or other professional
c. In determining whether the present moral character and fitness of an applicant
qualifies her or him for a positive recommendation, the Board will assess the weight
and significance of any inappropriate conduct by considering the following factors:
(1) the applicant's age at the time of the conduct;
(2) the recentness of the conduct;
(3) the reliability of the information concerning the conduct;
(4) the seriousness of the conduct;
(5) the factors underlying the conduct;
(6) the cumulative effect of conduct or information;
(7) the evidence of rehabilitation;
(8) the applicant's positive social contributions since the conduct;
(9) the applicant's candor in the admissions process;
(10) the materiality of any omissions or misrepresentations.
d. The Board may employ such assistance in conducting the character and fitness investigation as it deems necessary, including a character report by the National
Conference of Bar Examiners or further investigation by the Character and Fitness
e. At any stage of the registration or application proceedings, the Board may
request the applicant to appear before it or a designated Board member to answer any questions.
3. has designated the Clerk of the Supreme Court as the applicant's agent for service of process for all purposes;
4. has received a juris doctor or equivalent degree from a law school approved or provisionally approved for accreditation by the American Bar Association;
5. has complied with either Rule 6 or Rule 7;
6. has taken the oath and pledge required by Section 27-11-20, North Dakota Century Code; and
67. has paid all required fees.
B. Duty to Cooperate. An applicant has the duty to cooperate with the State Board of Law Examiners (Board) by timely complying with requests, including requests to:
1. provide complete information, documents and signed authorizations for release of information;
2. obtain reports or other information necessary for the Board to properly evaluate the applicant's character and fitness to practice law; and
3. appear for interview to determine eligibility for admission or facilitate the background investigation.
An applicant shall not discourage a person from providing information to the Board or retaliate against a person for providing information to the Board.
An applicant who violates this rule may be denied an opportunity to test or may be denied admission.
C. Continuing Obligation.
1. An applicant has a continuing obligation to update the application with respect to all matters inquired of on the application. This obligation continues during the pendency of the application, including the period when the matter is on review to the Board or the Supreme Court.
2. Whenever a attorney admitted to practice in this state moves from the address listed in the Board of Law Examiners records or when the name of a attorney is changed by marriage or otherwise, that attorney shall within ten days thereafter notify the Board or the Clerk of the Supreme Court, in writing, of that person's old and new addresses or of such former and new names held by that attorney.