Attorney Directories by State Bar Associations
Before you hire an attorney, you should find out whether the attorney has any disciplinary actions taken by a state bar or court. Each state regulates the practice of law within its jurisdiction to maintain the integrity of the profession and protect the consumers of legal services before they hire an attorney. Use the resources below to see whether the lawyer you have chosen has been disciplined.
The state bar in each state or its disciplinary board maintains a directory to show whether an attorney is authorized to practice law, licensed, active and in good standing. The directory is sometimes called the "Roll of Attorneys."
Most of these bar directories also allow the public to research the attorney’s licensing and disciplinary history. If you want to find the attorney or know if they have ever been disciplined or disbarred, then these directories are the best place to start your search.
How do you know whether a lawyer is in good standing and licensed to practice in your state? Traditionally, you needed to call the state’s licensing authority to find out. Today, most of the licensing authorities have moved that information into their online directories.
How to Find an Attorney's Disciplinary Record Online
Use the links below to select the state where the attorney practices law. Then go to the state bar site to search the attorney's name or bar number.
On many of these directories, you can see if the license has ever been inactive or if the attorney has ever been disciplined for misconduct. The license can be inactive for a variety of reasons including if the attorney does any of the following:
- does not pay a required fee
- voluntarily retires
- is deceased
If you need to make a complaint against an attorney for misconduct, then visit this link to find a list of the lawyer disciplinary agencies in the United States and their contact information.
How to Search for an Attorney by Practice Area
All of these directories allow you to search for the attorney by name. Many of the directories have advanced search features that allow you to search for all attorneys in a particular geographical area or narrow your search based on whether the attorney speaks a specific foreign language or attended a particular law school.
The best directories allow you to conduct a search based on your legal need by searching for focus, section, specialty or keyword. A few of these directories allow you to narrow your search to find a board-certified specialist in a particular specialty area of the law.
We created a list of these online attorney directories maintained by the state bar in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. This compilation of state lawyer licensing databases is updated on a regular basis. Please contact us for corrections or suggestions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Alabama - Alabama State Bar Online Lawyer Directory
Alaska - Alaska Bar Association - Lawyer Directory
Arizona - State Bar of Arizona - Find a Lawyer
Arkansas - Office of Professional Conduct, Supreme Court of Arkansas - Attorney Search
California - State Bar of California - Attorney Search
Connecticut - Statewide Grievance Committee - Attorney Firm Look-up
Colorado - Colorado Supreme Court, Office of Attorney Regulation - Information Search
Delaware* - Delaware State Bar - Attorney Search
District of Columbia (Washington D.C.) - District of Columbia Office of Bar Counsel - Find a Member
Florida - The Florida Bar - Find a Lawyer Search
Georgia - State Bar of Georgia - Member Directory
Hawaii - Hawaii State Judiciary Membership Status Verification and Directory
Idaho - Idaho State Bar Attorney Roster
Illinois - Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission - Lawyer Search
Indiana - Indiana Roll of Attorneys - IN.gov
Read more about the Indiana Roll of Attorneys
Iowa - Iowa Supreme Court Attorney Disciplinary Board - Search Lawyers Licensed in Iowa
Kansas - Supreme Court of Kansas - Online Attorney Directory
Kentucky - Kentucky Bar Association - Lawyer Locator or Roll of Attorneys
Louisiana - Louisiana State Bar Association Membership Directory
Maine - Maine Board of Overseers of the Bar - Attorney Directory
Maryland - State Bar of Maryland - Attorney Listings
Massachusetts - Massachusetts Office of the Bar Counsel - Attorney Look-up
Michigan - State Bar of Michigan - Attorney Directory Search
Minnesota - Minnesota Office of Professional Responsibility - Lawyer Public Decision Search
Mississippi - Mississippi State Bar - Lawyer Directory
Missouri - Official Missouri Directory of Lawyers - Missouri Bar
Montana - State Bar of Montana Member Search and Online Roll of Montana Attorneys
List of Montana's Disciplined Attorneys
Nebraska - Nebraska State Bar - Lawyer Search
Nevada - State Bar of Nevada - Find a Lawyer
New Hampshire* - No public directory found. Call (603) 224-5828.
For the Public - NH Attorney Discipline Office
New Hampshire's Password Protected Members-Only Online Directory
New Jersey* - New Jersey Courts - Searchable Attorney Index
New Mexico - State Bar of New Mexico - Attorney Finder
New York - New York Attorney Grievance Committees - USC Attorney Search
North Carolina - North Carolina State Bar - Find a Lawyer
North Dakota - Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of North Dakota - Lawyers Directory
Oklahoma* - No public directory found. Call (405) 416-7000
Oklahoma Bar Association - FindALawyer (Not a complete list of all attorneys).
Ohio - Ohio Supreme Court - Attorney Information Search
Oregon - Oregon State Bar - Member Search
Pennsylvania - Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania - PA Attorney Search
Rhode Island - Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of Rhode Island
South Carolina - South Carolina Bar Association - Member Directory
South Dakota - No public directory found. Call 605-224-7554
South Dakota Bar Association - Find an Attorney Resources
Tennessee - Tennessee Board of Professional Responsibility - Attorney Search
Texas - State Bar of Texas - Search for an Attorney
Utah - Utah State Bar - Find a Utah Lawyer Feature
Vermont - Professional Conduct Board of the Supreme Court of Vermont - List of Licensed Attorneys
Virginia* - Virginia State Bar - Attorney Records Search
Washington - Washington State Bar Association - Attorney Directory
West Virginia - West Virginia Office of Disciplinary Counsel - Member Directory Search
Wisconsin - Wisconsin Office of Lawyer Regulation
Wyoming - Wyoming State Bar - Membership Directory
*Delaware only provides information on lawyers in good standing via e-mail.
*New Hampshire does not provide an online searchable database of licensed attorneys. Instead call the lawyer licensing agency - New Hampshire Supreme Court - 603-271-2646.
*New Jersey does not provide an online searchable database of licensed attorneys. Instead, call the state's lawyer licensing agency - New Jersey Board of Bar Examiners - 609-984-2111.
*The directory in Oklahoma does not include all attorneys in good standing because attorneys in good standing can opt out of being included in the publicly searchable database.
*South Dakota does not provide an online searchable database of licensed attorneys. Instead, call the state's lawyer licensing agency - South Dakota - 800-952-2333.
*The directory in Virginia does not include all attorneys in good standing because attorneys in good standing can opt out of being included in the publicly searchable database.
*For the rest of the states, the links provided on this compilation of State Lawyer Licensing Databases should help you quickly find out whether a particular person is a licensed attorney in good standing to practice law in that state.
List of Current Disciplined and Disbarred Attorneys - Visit the website of the United States Department of Justice and the Executive Office for Immigration Review to find a list of currently disciplined attorneys. Find attorneys that were expelled from practice before January 13, 2012. The website includes information on the attorney's name, city or states, the discipline imposed, the effective date of discipline and whether the attorney was subsequently reinstated. The term expelled has been replaced by the term disbarred, which has the same meaning and effect. See 77 Fed. Reg. 2,011, 2,013 (Jan. 13, 2012). Find more information about the attorney’s disciplinary history by clicking on the date highlighted in gold.
List of previously disciplined attorneys - Determine whether a practitioner has been previously disciplined. The Department of Justice website also provides information about the Executive Office for Immigration Review's Attorney Discipline Program including the Professional Conduct for Immigration Practitioners - Factsheet (PDF), the Amendments to the Rules of Professional Conduct (2008), (PDF) and the Rules for Professional Conduct (2000), (PDF).
How to Find Out if an Attorney is Licensed - Visit LLRX.com to find a compilation of state lawyer licensing databases. Although the article was originally published in December of 2006, it has been updated regularly since that date. The site provides the phone number to the state's licensing authority and links to each state's online database. In addition to using the links to find out if the attorney is licensed in a particular state, you can also use the links to investigate whether the attorney was ever disciplined or disbarred.
Finding the Legal Directory of the State Bar
If you need to find out whether an attorney is licensed to practice in a particular state, then visit the above list of attorney directories maintained by each state's bar association. Often called the "roll of attorneys," these directories provide the most updated contact information and disciplinary record for each attorney.
Because the attorney is required to keep the information updated, these directories maintained by the state bar are often the best source of the most current information about the attorney. The directories maintained by the state bar tend to be more accurate than the commercial online attorney directories like Lawyer Legion, AVVO, and Justia.
Many of these directories help the public look up an attorney focused on a particular practice area of the law. A few of the directories provide information about attorneys who have become a board-certified specialist in one of the state-sponsored programs.
Also, in many states, the State Bar or local bar associations maintain Lawyer Referral Services to assist the public in finding an attorney.
This article was last updated on Friday, September 29, 2017.