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Character and Fitness Investigations

Character and Fitness Investigations-, Hearings

Overview of the Character and Fitness Process

If you are lawyer seeking to be admitted in Washington from another state or a law student applying to take the Washington Bar Exam, you will need to complete a lengthy application. The application will ask you detailed questions about your past education, employment, and conduct.

If the Bar determines from your application and subsequent investigation that you may lack the good moral character and fitness to practice law, you will be referred to a Character and Fitness Board Hearing. You have the burden of proving that you meet the standards for admission.

Character and Fitness Hearings

If your case is referred to a hearing, you should be prepared to face up to 16 Board members, who will generally decide on the day of the hearing whether you have met the Character and Fitness requirements for admission.  All Character and Fitness hearings are confidential and there are very few Court decisions interpreting the rules. It is particularly difficult to know what to expect and how to prepare for a Character and Fitness hearing on your own.

How I can help

If you are concerned that you have engaged in conduct in the past that could raise red flags (including criminal charges, academic misconduct, employment issues, neglect of financial responsibilities, false statements), you will want to deal with them as early as possible in the application process.  I can help guide you through the Character and Fitness process and represent you at your Character and Fitness hearing if you are referred to a hearing (or advise you if you wish to represent yourself). The Bar takes these proceedings very seriously and you should too. Meticulous preparation of your case and knowledge of the process is key.

Legal Ethics Attorney Kevin Bank

Attorney Kevin Bank