Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 5

NOTICE TO MEMBERS
Court of Appeals Approves First Comprehensive
Changes to Rules Governing the Bar
O
n January 10 the D.C. Court of Appeals
adopted comprehensive amendments to the
Rules Governing the District of Columbia Bar.
These amendments mark the first time since
the Bar's founding more than 50 years ago that the
Rules have been comprehensively reviewed and
updated.
The amendments address " inconsistencies, inefficiencies, redundancies,
loopholes, and misinterpretations " resulting from ad hoc changes adopted
over five decades as the Bar grew and developed.
The original Rules went into effect when the Bar was established on April
1, 1972, and the organization's Bylaws - which address the Bar's governance
and membership - were adopted on January 1, 1973. Since then,
both documents were modified on an as-needed basis, but never globally
or in concert with one another.
Work on the amendments, which included review of the Bar's Bylaws,
took place between 2020 and 2022, with the D.C. Bar Regulations/Rules/
Board Procedures Committee (now the D.C. Bar Governance Committee)
tasked to focus its review on editorial changes, removal of administrative
details from the Bylaws, and revisions to modernize the document and
reflect actual procedures of the Board of Governors and the Bar's membership.
The
Governance Committee began its work by reviewing the Bar's Bylaws,
developing a framework for the project, and adopting principles to
inform every aspect of its review. After engaging in an iterative and substantive
analysis of the proposed revisions, the committee delivered its
recommendation to the Board of Governors. On April 12, 2022, the Board
of Governors unanimously approved the revised Bylaws as recommended
by the committee, and on March 6, 2023, it petitioned the court to
consider and approve several amendments to the Rules.
In transmitting the proposed amendments to the Court of Appeals, D.C.
Bar Immediate Past President Ellen M. Jakovic said the committee carefully
considered appropriate amendments to the Rules to make both the
Rules and the Bar's Bylaws " 'user-friendly' for the members, to minimize
redundancy, and to ensure consistency between the two governing
documents. "
The Board stated that the " amendments to the Rules will make it easier
for D.C. Bar members to locate applicable rules and requirements regarding
their membership and other procedures related to the Board and the
Bar. These changes will also afford the Bar and the Board some flexibility
in addressing basic governance issues, organizational concerns, as well
as administrative and other matters related to membership. "
" I want to thank the D.C. Court of Appeals for recognizing the Bar's need
to ensure that its governing documents clearly define our organization's
functions, facilitate ease of administration of the Bar's policies and procedures,
and conform to industry best practices for effective governance, "
said D.C. Bar President Charles R. Lowery Jr. " With the updated Rules, the
Bar stands on an even stronger foundation to better serve its members. "
Lowery also extended his special thanks to Mark A. Salzberg, former chair
of the D.C. Bar Governance Committee, as well as to other members of
the committee " for all their hard work to make the Rules and Bylaws
clear, consistent, flexible, and empowering to our members. "
The following is a brief summary of the revisions:
Rule I (Organization of the Bar)
Adding " to assist the legal profession in maintaining high standards of
the practice of law in the District of Columbia " and " to promote access to
justice and enhance the delivery of legal services to those in need " to the
enumerated purposes of the Bar.
Rule II (Membership)
Under new Section 3, updating and defining the classes of D.C. Bar
membership and adding " retired " as an additional category.
Under new Section 4, changing references to " membership dues " or
" dues " to " license fees " throughout the Rules.
Rules III (Officers), IV (Board of Governors), V (Public Statements),
and VI (Meetings of the Bar)
Simplifying and streamlining the content of Rules III through VI, the majority
of which pertained to Board-related details and membership meetings
that are now properly set forth in the Bylaws.
Changing the title for Rule V from Executive Committee to Public Statements
and deleting almost all of the previous content under that Rule,
except language pertaining to " public expressions. " Due to the challenges
posed against integrated bars across the country, the Board recommended
that it would be prudent to retain this explicit limitation on the
Bar's ability to make public statements in the Rules.
The Court of Appeals also approved minor editorial changes to Rules VII
(Referendum Procedure), VIII (Disbursements), and IX (Bylaws).
Additionally, Section 2 of Rule XV (Amendment of Rules) is deleted in its
entirety from the Rules because the provision governing Bylaws amendments
exists appropriately in Bylaws Article X.
" The Bylaws are the appropriate governing document to set forth how
they may be amended. Having an identical provision in the Rules would
be redundant and unnecessary - and, worse, could cause confusion
and inconsistency between the Bylaws and the Rules, " the Board said.
The amended Rules take effect March 4, 2024.
Read in full the court's order amending the Rules Governing
the Bar at http://bit.ly/3vIoSox.
MARCH/APRIL 2024 * WASHINGTON LAWYER 5
http://bit.ly/3vIoSox

Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024

Notice to Members
From Our President
Calendar of Events
Practice Management
Toward Well-Being
Defending Diversity: Rise of DEI-Focused Practices
Will Law Firms Stay the Course on Improving Diversity?
Unlocking the Potential of Diverse Talent
We Belong: Black Students in the IP Talent Pipeline
Justice Sandra Day O’Connor: Her Legacy Lives on Through Us
Get to Know The Appellate Project
Speaking Up for Lawyers With Invisible Disability
Special Section: 25 Years of the Youth Law Fair
Taking the Stand
Worth Reading
Member Spotlight
On Further Review
Attorney Briefs
Speaking of Ethics
Disciplinary Summaries
The Pro Bono Effect
A Slice of Wry
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Cover1
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Cover2
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 1
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 2
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 3
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 4
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Notice to Members
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - From Our President
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Calendar of Events
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Practice Management
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Toward Well-Being
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Defending Diversity: Rise of DEI-Focused Practices
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 11
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 12
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 13
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Will Law Firms Stay the Course on Improving Diversity?
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 15
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 16
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 17
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Unlocking the Potential of Diverse Talent
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 19
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - We Belong: Black Students in the IP Talent Pipeline
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 21
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 22
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 23
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Justice Sandra Day O’Connor: Her Legacy Lives on Through Us
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 25
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Get to Know The Appellate Project
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 27
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Speaking Up for Lawyers With Invisible Disability
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 29
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 30
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 31
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Special Section: 25 Years of the Youth Law Fair
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 33
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Taking the Stand
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 35
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 36
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Worth Reading
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Member Spotlight
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 39
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - On Further Review
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Attorney Briefs
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Speaking of Ethics
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 43
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Disciplinary Summaries
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 45
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - The Pro Bono Effect
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - 47
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - A Slice of Wry
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Cover3
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2024 - Cover4
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http://washingtonlawyer.dcbar.org/august2017
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http://washingtonlawyer.dcbar.org/may2017
http://washingtonlawyer.dcbar.org/april2017
http://washingtonlawyer.dcbar.org/march2017
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http://washingtonlawyer.dcbar.org/january2017
http://washingtonlawyer.dcbar.org/december2016
http://washingtonlawyer.dcbar.org/november2016/
http://washingtonlawyer.dcbar.org/october2016
http://washingtonlawyer.dcbar.org/september2016
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