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May 17, 2019

An attorney admitted to the New York State Bar is subject to the State's registration requirements as long as he or she remains "duly admitted to the bar"


22 NYCRR 118.1 [a]-[c] provides that the registration requirements for attorneys applies "for as long as the attorney remains duly admitted to the New York bar" and such registration may only be terminated by the attorney's death, disbarment or formal resignation upon order of the Appellate Division.* Attorneys once admitted to practice law in New York State are required to register with the Office of Court Administration biennially.

An attorney was admitted to practice in New York State in 1982 and listed his business address as being in another state. When the attorney sought to leave to resign from the New York State bar for nondisciplinary reasons as permitted by 22 NYCRR 1240.22 [a], the Attorney Grievance Committee [AGC] opposed the attorney's application because the attorney was not current in his New York attorney registration requirements, having failed to timely register for his biennial period registration period, which commenced in 2018.

The Appellate Division found that "[i]nasmuch as [the attorney] was subject to potential disciplinary action as a result of such failure to register, the attorney was ineligible for nondisciplinary resignation and his application must be denied.

The court, citing Matter of Frank, 146 AD3 1228, opined that any future application by the attorney to resign from the New York State Bar must be supported by proof of his full satisfaction of the requirements of Judiciary Law §468-a and 22 NYCRR 118.1.**

In contrast, an attorney admitted to practice in New York State by the Appellate Division in 1996 and whose business address was on record with the Office of Court Administration, as being in another state, applied for leave to resign from the New York State bar for nondisciplinary reasons.

The AGC opposed the application, contending that attorney was ineligible for nondisciplinary resignation because he has failed to fulfill his New York State attorney registration requirements for the most recent biennial period, which began on his date of birth in 2018. However, Office of Court Administration records establish that the attorney had, in fact, become current in his New York State attorney registration obligation and cured any preexisting registration delinquency.

Accordingly, as the AGC had advanced no other substantive objection to the attorney's application seeking to resign from the New York State Bar, the Appellate Division determined that the attorney was then eligible to resign from the New York State Bar for nondisciplinary reasons and granted his application and accepted his resignation. ***

* See Rules for Attorney Disciplinary Matters, 22 NYCRR 1240.22 [a].

** This decision is posted on the Internet at:

*** This decision is posted on the Internet at:

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