Lawyers United Inc.

LAWYERS UNITED INC. is the only advocacy organization in the United States exclusively dedicated to championing the in-state and interstate First Amendment and constitutional rights of lawyers. We have more than thirty years of experience in litigating attorney civil right cases including admissions and discipline cases in the United States District Courts through the Supreme Court.

LAWYERS UNITED INC. (LU) has filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia challenging the Federal District Court Local Rules in California, Florida, and the District of Columbia. The 85 page Amended Complaint plus Exhibits in LAWYERS UNITIED INC. v. UNITED STATES 19-3222 alleges causes of action under the Separation of Powers Doctrine, First Amendment, Supremacy Clause, Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses, and the Rules Enabling Act. (Amended Complaint) (Exhibits A) (Exhibits B) LU has filed a motion for a preliminary injunction requesting the Court to invalidate the Federal District Court Local Rules that categorically grant general bar admission privileges to all lawyers licensed from the forum state and that categorically deny general bar admission privileges to all lawyers licensed from 49 other states.

LU has also filed an amicus brief in Jarchow v. Wisconsin State Bar, Supreme Court docket 19-831 supporting the grant of certiorari. (Amicus Petition) The Jarchow petitioners, and lawyers in many other ongoing federal lawsuits, argue that based on recent Supreme Court precedent, that State Bar associations that engage in political advocacy on matters of public concern antithetical to their members’ views, violate the First Amendment compelled association and compelled speech liberties.

LU also requests your support and assistance in finding licensed lawyers in good standing willing to challenge State Supreme Court sister-state attorney licensing polices that require experienced attorneys to re-invent the wheel and take another bar exam. Specifically, LU desires to challenge the California bar exam for experienced attorneys. The results of this putative licensing test are neither valid nor reliable according to the State Bar of California statistics and psychometric expert opinion. (Complaint Exhibit A) This test has a standard error of measurement greater than .5. This licensing test is virtually identical to the 17th Century practice of licensing printing tests based on content. This licensing test for licensed lawyers is virtually identical in purpose and effect to the literacy tests used to block blacks from voting.

LU also requests your support and assistance in gathering licensed lawyers willing to challenge State Supreme Court tit-for-tat licensing polices that deny admission on motion to experienced licensing lawyers because they are licensed in states that do not provide admission on motion to its lawyers. Approximately, 25 states are in this tit-for-tat interstate compact. This compact tramples the First Amendment promises. Promises made must be kept. LU has uncovered recent Supreme Court precedent that squarely invalidates prior United States Court of Appeals decisions upholding these tit-for-tat restrictions as rational.

Why is this LU work important? Lawyers are the voice of justice. They are necessary and indispensable to secure and enforce the People’s rights to life, liberty, and property and to prevent the deprivation of these rights without due process of law. Lawyers are further necessary to prevent government over-reaching. While all lawyers may be created equal, after practicing for years they grow more and more specialized. This specialization and the wisdom that comes from experience is forfeited when lawyers are shackled by local law from licensing transfer. Individual growth requires liberty and freedom. Individual growth benefits everyone by resetting the competitive balance.

Look at the evidence. According to statistics compiled by the National Conference of Bar Examiners. Almost 9,000 attorneys a year are admitted on motion to the bar of another state. The particulars are below:

  • 2014 8,436
  • 2015 8,445
  • 2016 8,991
  • 2017 9,233
  • 2018 8,682
  • 2019 8,668

Approximately, 42 states have adopted admission on motion. However, as noted above, 25 of them are on a tit-for-tat basis.

In 2019, 6,706 newly minted lawyers were admitted to another state on the basis of a transferred UBE score. It is believed that 35 jurisdictions have adopted the UBE. As such, we can assume for argument that 15,000 licensed lawyers a year are getting admitted in a second state without taking another bar exam.

Compare that to California, to the 100% subjective exam given to experienced attorneys, where the NCBE statistics show:

Taking Passing %Passing
2018 February 602 261 43%
July 522 169 32%
2017 February 375 167 45%
July 565 215 38%
2016 February 452 195 43%
July 410 149 36%

This is the same licensing test that has a standard error of measurement greater than .5. (Complaint Exhibit A) One out of eight Americans live in California. Five hundred experienced lawyers a year are being failed on an entry-level bar exam, 60% are failing, while on the other hand 15,000 lawyers a year do not even have to take a second bar exam. Out of those 15,000 lawyers, not a single one is eligible for California reciprocal admission on motion or by UBE transfer. Something is clearly wrong.

We can’t accomplish reciprocal lawyer licensing consistent with the First Amendment promises and 21st Century technology without your support. With your support nothing can stop us. It is our manifest destiny as Americans to be free. Join us and let us together fulfill our constitutional duty to vindicate our Constitutional birthrights.