For a variety of reasons, legal clients frequently prefer to use their out-of-state counsel for matters litigated before the Ohio Supreme Court or other Ohio tribunals. For these attorneys seeking to appear in Ohio courts and affiliated local counsel, the end of the calendar year – and the beginning of the next one – can come with harsh reminders about the timely need to renew pro hac vice registrations.
On Feb. 28, 2022 the Ohio Supreme Court issued an announcement revoking the pro hac vice admission of three attorneys on a filing of automatic
exclusion by the Office of Attorney Services. Each attorney had not complied with the registration requirements in Gov.Bar R. XII.
Ohio’s rule differs from many other states that admit an attorney for the duration of their case, or for two or more years. Ohio’s Gov.Bar R. XII(5) states that if the attorney continues to appear under pro hac vice after the first day of a new calendar year, they must submit a renewal fee with the Office of Attorney Services. Failure to submit the renewal fee within 30 days will result in automatic exclusion, which is what happened with the recent Supreme Court order.
One of the counsel who had their registration revoked has oral argument scheduled at the end of March 2022. Reinstatement is no automatic affair.
Across different states
The states in which our law firm, Porter Wright has offices have slightly different requirements for pro hac vice admission. For example, Illinois requires an annual registration fee with the Attorney Registration & Disciplinary Commission (ARDC). Illinois also requires a verified statement and one-time fee for each proceeding in which the lawyer appears. Florida changed its rules on Feb. 7, 2022, requiring a filing per case along with an annual fee, joining Pennsylvania and Washington, D.C. (which limits pro hac vice admission to five cases per year).
Keeping up with these differences can be time consuming for the multijurisdictional lawyer. Porter Wright frequently acts as local counsel for out-of-state attorneys and their clients, and stands ready to assist with the rules governing Ohio’s pro hac vice practice.