Bar Rules


State Bar Programs / Part XIV - Rules Governing the Investigation and Prosecution of the Unlicensed Practice of Law / 14-3. STANDING COMMITTEE / RULE 14-3.1 GENERALLY

(a) Appointment and Terms. The Standing Committee shall be appointed by the Court, and shall consist of 23 members, 11 of whom shall be nonlawyers. The nonlawyer members should be geographically representative of the State. The lawyer members shall be appointed by the Court and shall include at least one member from each judicial district. The Court shall appoint a chair and at least 1 vice-chair of the Standing Committee, both of whom may be nonlawyers. Eight of the members of the Standing Committee shall constitute a quorum. All appointments to the Standing Committee shall be for a term of 3 years, except that it shall be the goal of the initial appointments that one-third (1/3) of the terms of the members appointed will expire annually. The members who initially serve terms of less than 3 years shall be eligible for immediate reappointment. No member shall be appointed to more than 2 full consecutive terms.

(b) Duties. It shall be the duty of the Standing Committee to receive and evaluate District Committee reports and to determine whether litigation should be instituted in Superior Court against any alleged offender. The Standing Committee may approve civil injunctive proceedings, civil or criminal contempt proceedings, a combination of injunctive and contempt proceedings, or such other action as may be appropriate. In addition, the duties of the Standing Committee shall include, but not be limited to:

(1) the consideration and investigation of activities that may, or do, constitute the unlicensed practice of law;

(2) the supervision of the District Committees, which shall include, but not be limited to:

(A) prescribing rules of procedure for District Committees;
(B) assigning reports of unlicensed practice of law for investigation;
(C) reassigning or withdrawing matters previously assigned, exercising final authority to close cases not deemed by the Standing Committee to then warrant further action by the State Bar of Georgia for unlicensed practice of law, and closing cases proposed to be resolved by a cease and desist affidavit where staff counsel objects to the closing of the case or the acceptance of a cease and desist affidavit by the District Committee;
(D) joining with a District Committee in a particular investigation; and
(E) request staff investigators, staff counsel, and voluntary bar counsel to conduct investigations on behalf of or in concert with the District Committees; and
(F) suspending District Committee members and chairs for cause and appointing a temporary District Committee chair where there has been a suspension, resignation, or removal, pending the appointment of a replacement chair by the Court;

(3) the initiation and supervision of litigation, including the delegation of responsibility to staff, or Counsel for the Bar to prosecute such litigation;

(4) the giving of advice regarding the unlicensed practice of law policy to the officers, Board of Governors, staff, sections, or committees of the State Bar of Georgia as requested; and

(5) furnishing any and all information, confidential records, and files regarding pending or closed investigations of unlicensed practice of law to any state or federal law enforcement or regulatory agency, United States Attorney, District Attorney, Solicitor, the Georgia Office of Bar Admissions and equivalent entities in other jurisdictions, the State Disciplinary Board of the State Bar of Georgia and equivalent entities in other jurisdictions where there is or may be a violation of state or federal law or the Rules of Professional Conduct of the State Bar of Georgia, or when required by law or court order.


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