ORS 9.220¹
General requirements for admission

An applicant for admission as attorney must apply to the Supreme Court and show that the applicant:

(1) Is at least 18 years old, which proof may be made by the applicant’s affidavit.

(2)(a) Is a person of good moral character and fit to practice law.

(b) For purposes of this section and ORS 9.025 (Board of governors), 9.070 (Duties of officers), 9.110 (Board of governors to formulate rules), 9.210 (Board of bar examiners), 9.250 (Order for admission) and 9.527 (Grounds for disbarment, suspension or reprimand), the lack of "good moral character" may be established by reference to acts or conduct that reflect moral turpitude or to acts or conduct which would cause a reasonable person to have substantial doubts about the individual’s honesty, fairness and respect for the rights of others and for the laws of the state and the nation. The conduct or acts in question should be rationally connected to the applicant’s fitness to practice law.

(3) Has the requisite learning and ability, which must be shown by the examination of the applicant, by the judges or under their direction. However, no rule shall establish any maximum on the number of times an applicant may apply for and take the bar examination whenever presented if the reason for refusing admission to practice law is failure to pass the bar examination. [Amended by 1973 c.827 §2; 1981 c.193 §7; 1983 c.373 §2; 1985 c.599 §1; 1991 c.726 §3; 1995 c.302 §21; 1999 c.171 §3]

Notes of Decisions

The burden is upon the applicant to prove his good moral character. In re Alpert, 269 Or 508, 525 P2d 1042 (1974)

In showing reforma­tion of character, peti­tioner satisfied his burden of proving that he is "a per­son of good moral character." In re Gimbel, 271 Or 671, 533 P2d 810 (1975)

The require­ment of an expression of intent to reside in Oregon does not violate the applicant's right of interstate travel, equal protec­tion or due process. Wilson v. Wilson, 416 F Supp 984 (1976)

Where applicant for admission was convicted of custodial in­ter­fer­ence, committed perjury during dissolu­tion pro­ceed­ings and lacked apprecia­tion of moral and legal implica­tions of miscon­duct, evidence es­tab­lished his lack of good moral character within meaning of this sec­tion. In the Matter of Thomas D. Easton, 289 Or 99, 610 P2d 270 (1980)

Where there was pattern of devious or untruthful testimony under oath and applicant for admission to Oregon State Bar failed to scrupulously honor all financial obliga­tions, applicant failed to prove good moral character. In re Easton, 298 Or 365, 692 P2d 592 (1984)

Where applicant not only engaged in heinous crime in past but continued to misstate facts of crime and his involve­ment in it in order to gain admission to Bar, applicant did not show himself to be credible per­son and did not es­tab­lish that he had good moral character re­quired to practice law. In re Fine, 303 Or 314, 736 P2d 183 (1987)

Where applicant had committed crim­i­nal acts that would have resulted in five-year suspension if per­son had been admitted to practice of law at time acts were committed, applicant would not be permitted to apply for admission until five years from date most recent miscon­duct was adjudicated. In re Jaffee, 311 Or 159, 806 P2d 685 (1991)

When applicant imper­sonated employer on telephone to obtain credit and continued to misstate facts about prior dishonesty, bar applicant failed to es­tab­lish good moral character re­quired to practice law. In re Parker, 314 Or 143, 838 P2d 54 (1992)

Where applicant seeking reinstate­ment did not testify at hearing, experts suggested restric­tions on applicant's practice and trial panel expressed doubt whether applicant could be trusted in future, applicant failed to es­tab­lish pos­ses­sion of good moral character requisite to reinstate­ment by clear and convincing evidence. In re Nash, 317 Or 354, 855 P2d 1112 (1993)

Bankruptcy is insufficient as sole ground for disqualifying applicant from admission to bar. In re Scallon, 327 Or 32, 956 P2d 982 (1998)

1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 9—Attorneys; Law Libraries, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­009.­html (2007) (last ac­cessed Feb. 12, 2009).
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2007, Chapter 9, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­009ano.­htm (2007) (last ac­cessed Feb. 12, 2009).
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent.
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