Foreign Attorney Practicing in Virginia Court.

A non-lawyer who is licensed in another United States jurisdiction may practice in the courts of Virginia if (1) the non-lawyer’s jurisdiction provides a like privilege to members of the Virginia State Bar; (2) the foreign attorney associates with a member of the Virginia State Bar; (3) that association consists in part of active supervision of the foreign attorney by his Virginia associate; and (4) this type of practice in Virginia is not so frequent so as to constitute the regular, as opposed to the occasional, practice of law in Virginia. There is no definite standard in Virginia by which “occasional??? has been quantified, although in other jurisdictions a maximum number of appearances is permitted before the practice becomes “regular.??? Although it appeared to the Committee that more than twenty-five appearances by each of two foreign law firms in a particular Virginia Circuit Court would exceed the definition of ìoccasional,î any finding as to the definition of “occasional??? as differentiated from “regular??? practice would be left to the discretion of the Circuit Court Judge in the Virginia jurisdiction where the suits are pending. (Rule 1A:4; ß54.1-3900; UPL Op. No. 95; UPL Op. No. 115).

Committee Opinion

June 14, 1989 Updated: Aug 28, 2006