|     printer icon  Printer-friendly version of this page

2014 California Rules of Court

Rule 9.40. Counsel pro hac vice

(a) Eligibility

A person who is not a member of the State Bar of California but who is a member in good standing of and eligible to practice before the bar of any United States court or the highest court in any state, territory, or insular possession of the United States, and who has been retained to appear in a particular cause pending in a court of this state, may in the discretion of such court be permitted upon written application to appear as counsel pro hac vice, provided that an active member of the State Bar of California is associated as attorney of record. No person is eligible to appear as counsel pro hac vice under this rule if the person is:

(1)A resident of the State of California;

(2)Regularly employed in the State of California; or

(3)Regularly engaged in substantial business, professional, or other activities in the State of California.

(Subd (a) amended effective January 1, 2007.)

(b) Repeated appearances as a cause for denial

Absent special circumstances, repeated appearances by any person under this rule is a cause for denial of an application.

(Subd (b) lettered effective January 1, 2007; adopted as part of subd (a) effective September 13, 1972.)

(c) Application

(1)Application in superior court

A person desiring to appear as counsel pro hac vice in a superior court must file with the court a verified application together with proof of service by mail in accordance with Code of Civil Procedure section 1013a of a copy of the application and of the notice of hearing of the application on all parties who have appeared in the cause and on the State Bar of California at its San Francisco office. The notice of hearing must be given at the time prescribed in Code of Civil Procedure section 1005 unless the court has prescribed a shorter period.

(2)Application in Supreme Court or Court of Appeal

An application to appear as counsel pro hac vice in the Supreme Court or a Court of Appeal must be made as provided in rule 8.54, with proof of service on all parties who have appeared in the cause and on the State Bar of California at its San Francisco office.

(Subd (c) amended and relettered effective January 1, 2007; adopted as part of subd (b) effective September 13, 1972; subd (b) previously amended effective October 3, 1973, September 3, 1986, January 17, 1991, and March 15, 1991.)

(d) Contents of application

The application must state:

(1)The applicant's residence and office address;

(2)The courts to which the applicant has been admitted to practice and the dates of admission;

(3)That the applicant is a member in good standing in those courts;

(4)That the applicant is not currently suspended or disbarred in any court;

(5)The title of court and cause in which the applicant has filed an application to appear as counsel pro hac vice in this state in the preceding two years, the date of each application, and whether or not it was granted; and

(6)The name, address, and telephone number of the active member of the State Bar of California who is attorney of record.

(Subd (d) amended and lettered effective January 1, 2007; adopted as part of subd (b) effective September 13, 1972; subd (b) previously amended effective October 3, 1973, September 3, 1986, January 17, 1991, and March 15, 1991.)

(e) Fee for application

An applicant for permission to appear as counsel pro hac vice under this rule must pay a reasonable fee not exceeding $50 to the State Bar of California with the copy of the application and the notice of hearing that is served on the State Bar. The Board of Governors of the State Bar of California will fix the amount of the fee:

(1)To defray the expenses of administering the provisions of this rule that are applicable to the State Bar and the incidental consequences resulting from such provisions; and

(2)Partially to defray the expenses of administering the Board's other responsibilities to enforce the provisions of the State Bar Act relating to the competent delivery of legal services and the incidental consequences resulting therefrom.

(Subd (e) amended and relettered effective January 1, 2007; adopted as subd (c) effective September 3, 1986.)

(f) Counsel pro hac vice subject to jurisdiction of courts and State Bar

A person permitted to appear as counsel pro hac vice under this rule is subject to the jurisdiction of the courts of this state with respect to the law of this state governing the conduct of attorneys to the same extent as a member of the State Bar of California. The counsel pro hac vice must familiarize himself or herself and comply with the standards of professional conduct required of members of the State Bar of California and will be subject to the disciplinary jurisdiction of the State Bar with respect to any of his or her acts occurring in the course of such appearance. Article 5, chapter 4, division III of the Business and Professions Code and the Rules of Procedure of the State Bar govern in any investigation or proceeding conducted by the State Bar under this rule.

(Subd (f) amended and relettered effective January 1, 2007; previously relettered as subd (d) effective September 3, 1986.)

(g) Supreme Court and Court of Appeal not precluded from permitting argument in a particular case

This rule does not preclude the Supreme Court or a Court of Appeal from permitting argument in a particular case from a person who is not a member of the State Bar, but who is licensed to practice in another jurisdiction and who possesses special expertise in the particular field affected by the proceeding.

(Subd (g) amended and relettered effective January 1, 2007; previously relettered as subd (e) effective September 3, 1986.)

Rule 9.40 amended and renumbered effective January 1, 2007; adopted as rule 983 by the Supreme Court effective September 13, 1972; previously amended effective October 3, 1973, September 3, 1986, January 17, 1991, and March 15, 1991.

[ Back to Top ]