New Fingerprinting Rules for California Attorneys
The California Bar passed a new rule requiring all active attorneys licensed in California and multijurisdictional practitioners must be re-fingerprinted. Attorneys need to act by April 30, 2019, or penalties will begin to accrue.
The Bar has created detailed instructions for the following groups:
- In-State Attorneys
- Out-of-State Attorneys
- Out-of-Country Attorneys
- Multijurisdictional Practitioners
Why is the State Bar requiring all active attorneys to be re-fingerprinted? The State Bar needs to be in compliance with Business & Professions Code 6054. This section requires the State Bar to receive notifications of attorney arrests and convictions from the California Department of Justice. This requirement has existed for the past 30 years. Until last year, the State Bar was out of compliance with this statutory mandate.
The only way for the State Bar to come fully into compliance is to re-fingerprint licensed attorneys. Although attorneys were fingerprinted at the time of admission to the State Bar, unfortunately neither the State Bar nor the DOJ retained those fingerprints for future notification services.
Please check the frequently asked questions page of the Bar’s website for more information about this new requirement.