The Pennsylvania Bar Association or PBA is a voluntary legal society that serves lawyers, law students, and other legal professionals in the state. It serves primarily to advocate for and educate both members and the public. It offers publications, support for practicing lawyers, CLE or Continued Legal Education courses, and networking opportunities for people who join it.
It is headquartered in Harrisburg and used to be located in Philadelphia. It was founded in 1895 and is open to all lawyers practicing in Pennsylvania who are in good standing with the state’s courts. Members are expected to adhere to the highest of moral and ethical codes. Those who fall afoul of the prescribed behaviors are barred from joining the PBA.
The PBA serves lawyers in all stages of their careers. However, it also has a special division called the Young Lawyers Division of the Pennsylvania State Bar. This division is reserved specifically for lawyers who are aged 40 or younger and have practiced law for five years or less. Joining this division does not cost anything. PBA members who meet the division criteria automatically become members of it.
A 23-member Board of Governors oversees the governance of the PBA and its foundation. The foundation is a federally-recognized 501(c)(3) charity that functions as an affiliate of the PBA itself. It gets its funding from donations that members and the public alike voluntary give to it.
Lawyers who join the PBA have access to a number of benefits including the bar’s leadership institute. Attorneys who want to contribute to their profession and serve as leaders to others in the industry can join this institute. They serve on committees and at events that are geared toward attorneys at all stages of their careers.
Attorneys who are just starting out in law or perhaps want a change of pace can find job openings by using the PBA’s career resource center on its website. This resource shows what positions are open throughout the state and what firms or government entities are currently hiring attorneys.
The public also can use the PBA website for a variety of purposes. Namely, they can find attorneys who are ready to take their cases.
The Pennsylvania Bar Association can be reached at its physical location at 100 South Street in Harrisburg, 17101. It also has an office at Heinz 57 Center, 339 Sixth Avenue Suite 760 in Pittsburgh, 15222.