The Utah State Bar was created in 1931 through an act of the Utah legislature. Prior to 1931, lawyers would gather informally to network and consult with each other. However, attorneys wanting to be licensed to practice in Utah had to petition the U.S. Supreme Court. To eliminate the need for petitioning the Supreme Court and to solidify the informal attorney gatherings, the state legislature organized and instituted the Utah State Bar as a regulatory bar association.
The Utah State Bar is governed by a Board of Commissioners that consists of 13 members with voting privileges. Eleven of these are lawyers who are elected into their positions. The other two are appointed by the Supreme Court and are not lawyers.
In addition to the 13 members, the Board of Commissioners also has representation from universities and legal organizations in the state. This representation comes from the Brigham Young University Law School, the deans of the University of Utah, the American Bar Association, the Young Lawyers Division, the Women Lawyers of Utah, and the Utah Minority Bar, among others.
Attorneys who join the Utah State Bar receive benefits that help them professionally. For example, members are required to complete 24 CLE or Continued Legal Education credits every two years. They can sign up for and find out more about CLE classes and credits on the state bar’s website.
Further, lawyers who are unsure of what standards they must maintain while they are members of the state bar can learn about the professional conduct on the state bar’s website. They can learn what codes they must abide by and what behavior could land them in trouble during their memberships.
The Utah State Bar’s website is also available to the public who can use it to access legal resources. For example, people who are not sure if they should hire a lawyer can find out the benefits of doing so by reading more about retaining a lawyer on the bar’s website.
If they are short on funds, they can also learn about low cost legal services and possible pro bono work by visiting the state bar’s website. The website also has resources that could allow people to representation themselves successfully in court. To contact the state bar in person, people can visit its physical location at 645 South 200 East in Salt Lake City, 84111.