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Attorney Discipline

Attorney Discipline is covered under Local Civil Rule 83.6 which states in part:

(a) Discipline by Other Courts; Criminal Convictions. Whenever any member admitted to practice in this Court, including a person admitted pro hac vice, has been suspended, disbarred or resigned pending disciplinary proceedings from the practice of law by the Supreme Court of Oklahoma or by any other court of competent jurisdiction or has been convicted of a felony or any crime involving moral turpitude in any court, such disbarment, suspension, or conviction shall operate as an automatic disbarment of the attorney’s right to practice in this Court, and an order of disbarment shall be issued by the Court. Any attorney subject to this rule must notify the Court immediately upon any such suspension, disbarment or resignation. The automatic disbarment from this Court shall remain in effect unless the attorney has by motion to the Court shown good cause as to why disbarment should not remain in effect. The Chief Judge or his designee shall rule on such motion.

(b) Standard Governing Attorney Conduct. The Court adopts the Oklahoma Rules of Professional Conduct as adopted and amended from time to time by the Supreme Court of Oklahoma as the standard governing attorney conduct in this Court.

(c) Misconduct. Complaints of professional misconduct by counsel are subject to Fed. R. Civ. P. 11. Complaints of professional misconduct may be submitted by a judge of the Court, at his or her discretion, to the Committee on Admissions and Grievances. Upon receipt of a complaint regarding the professional conduct of an attorney, the Committee on Admissions and Grievances shall, after notice and opportunity to be heard, report and recommend to the Court whether:

(1) The inquiry should be terminated because the question raised is unsupported or insubstantial;

(2) The alleged professional misconduct justifies further inquiry and, for members of the Oklahoma Bar Association, the matter should be referred to the Office of the General Counsel of the Oklahoma Bar Association for investigation and prosecution by that Office, if warranted;

(3) The alleged professional misconduct warrants consideration of prompt disciplinary action by this Court regarding the attorney’s right to practice before the Court;

(4) The alleged professional misconduct of an attorney not a member of the Oklahoma Bar Association justifies further inquiry by the Court. Any attorney whose conduct in this Court is under investigation by the Committee on Admissions and Grievances shall not be admitted pro hac vice until the pending investigation is concluded. Any action taken by the Court pursuant to a report and recommendation by the Committee on Admissions and Grievances shall be by a majority vote of the active judges.


Nothing contained in this Local Rule shall limit the right of an individual judge to manage the cases assigned to that judge, which right shall include, without limitation, the authority to impose any sanctions, penalties or other restrictions which may be appropriate in a particular case, or the authority to refer a matter for consideration to the Committee on Admissions and Grievances on an advisory basis.


(d) Right to a Hearing. This Court shall not impose any disciplinary action affecting an attorney’s right to practice before the Court for two (2) years or more until after a hearing on the matter has been held before a judge or panel of judges . The attorney may waive the right to a hearing. At the hearing, the attorney whose conduct is the subject of the complaint shall be afforded an opportunity to appear in person and/or by counsel, to present oral and documentary evidence, to compel the attendance of witnesses or the production of documents, to cross-examine witnesses, and to present argument orally or in writing. If not called by the attorney whose conduct is being investigated, it is within the discretion of the judge or panel to call the complaining party to appear at the hearing.

(e) Sanctions. Discipline by this Court may include disbarment, suspension from practice for a definite time, reprimand, or other discipline which the Court deems proper. Referral of a complaint to the Office of the General Counsel of the Oklahoma Bar Association for investigation shall not constitute such discipline as to entitle the attorney to a hearing in this Court on the propriety of the referral.

(f) Contempt of Court. Disciplinary proceedings under this rule shall not affect or be affected by any proceeding for contempt under Title 18 of the United States Code or under Fed. R. Crim. P. 42.

(g) Unauthorized Practice. Any person who before admission to the bar of this Court or who during disbarment or suspension exercises any of the privileges bestowed upon members of this bar, or who pretends to be entitled to such privileges, or who otherwise engages in the unauthorized practice of law before the Court, shall be guilty of contempt of this Court and shall be subject to punishment therefor and shall be subject to any other discipline which the Court may impose.

(h) Reinstatement. Persons disbarred indefinitely from practice before this Court may not petition for reinstatement until three (3) years following disbarment or until two (2) years following an adverse decision upon a previous petition for reinstatement; provided, however, that a person disbarred under subsection (a) may apply for reinstatement at any time upon being reinstated by the Oklahoma Bar Association. Persons suspended indefinitely must satisfy all conditions to reinstatement imposed by the Court at the time of suspension.