May 2
2014
9:40 AM

MAKING PROCEDURE MORE CIVIL?

Are you hoping to be sworn in to the California bar this year? If your hope is realized, you will be among the first California lawyers to swear to be a civil lawyer, even if you practice criminal law. The California supreme court has approved rule 9.4 of the California Rules of Court adding the following wording to the oath: “As an officer of the court, I will strive to conduct myself at all times with dignity, courtesy, and integrity.”

The court said that “[t]he adoption of the rule was consistent with the nationwide efforts, led in part by the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), to include a ‘civility’ provision to [sic] the oaths taken by lawyers admitted to the bar in jurisdictions nationwide.” According to Patrick Kelly, immediate past-president of the State Bar of California, the civility language was inserted to “create an added reinforcement for attorneys entering the bar in California to remember the principles of professionalism that brought them to the practice in the first place and in particular in their dealings with clients, other attorneys, and judges.”

[RL]

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