Admission to the bar of this court is generally governed by Federal Rule of Appellate Procedure 46(a) and Ninth Circuit Rule 46-1. The practical effect of these rules is summarized below:
(A) Upon causing a case to be docketed in this court, or entering an appearance herein, an attorney so doing who is not already admitted to the bar of this court shall simultaneously apply for admission and pay the admission fee, except as noted in (B), below.
(B) Federal government attorneys who are representing the United States or an agency thereof must apply for admission but are not subject to the admission fee while in government employ.
(C) In order to be admitted to the bar of this court, you must have been previously admitted to practice (and be in good standing) before (1) the Supreme Court of the United States, (2) another United States Court of Appeals, (3) any United States District Court, or (4) the highest state appellate court of one of the states of the United States.
(D) You must complete the form entitled "Form 31 Application and Oath for Admission,” available at: https://cdn.ca9.uscourts.gov/datastore/uploads/forms/form31.pdf
(E) Unless you were sworn in to the Ninth Circuit as part of a mass swearing in ceremony within the past 3 months, you must be sponsored by a member in good standing of the bar of this court. Please be certain that your sponsor is a member of the bar of this court in order to avoid undue delay in processing your application. If you are unable to obtain a sponsor, please complete the form and the Clerk will sponsor you if we are able to verify your bar admission information.
(F) The one-time attorney admission fee is $230.00, as of October 2011.
(G) To apply, log into CM/ECF at https://ecf.ca9.uscourts.gov/n/AttorneyFiling/login.jsf and choose Utilities > Bar Admission. Upload the PDF file of your application form and pay the $230.00 fee with a credit card. For step-by-step instructions, review the CM/ECF User Guide: Using CM/ECF for Bar Admission (https://cdn.ca9.uscourts.gov/datastore/uploads/cmecf/ecf-user-guide.pdf) . To register for the Ninth Circuit ECF system, follow the instructions at https://www.ca9.uscourts.gov/cmecf/#section-registration. If you have a current, valid exemption from using CM/ECF, send an email to AttorneyAdmission@ca9.uscourts.gov for instructions on how to apply.
(H) When filing the admission form in CM/ECF:
If you have Adobe Acrobat or another tool that lets you save completed forms:
- Complete the form.
- Print the completed form to your PDF printer (File > Print > select Adobe PDF or another PDF printer listed in the drop-down list).
If you do not have Adobe Acrobat or another tool that lets you save completed forms:
- Complete the form.
- Print the completed form to your printer.
- Scan the completed form to a PDF file.
Counsel should also be familiar with the provisions of Circuit Rules 46-2 through 46-5, which provides for diligent prosecution of appeals, especially criminal appeals (46-2); prompt notice to the court of counsel’s change of address (46-3); participation of law students under supervision of a member of the bar of this court (46-4); and restrictions on practice before this court by its former employees (46-5).
Once counsel is admitted, counsel is admitted for life unless the Court orders otherwise.