You’ve invested much of your life into becoming a lawyer, working hard through law school to pass the California bar. The last thing you want is to jeopardize your ability to practice law.

It’s not uncommon to fret for your practice after the conviction of a crime. California law requires you, the court, and district attorney to each notify the State Bar of California when an attorney they arrest and charge an attorney or after their conviction.

What happens next depends on the unique circumstances of your case.

The State Bar will place you on an interim suspension if you’re convicted of a felony until your hearing. However, if you’re convicted of a misdemeanor crime involving fraud or the intent to harm a person or property, the State Bar Court may also place you on the same suspension.

A hearing for other misdemeanors will determine if or what punishment you will face. Possible punishments for attorneys range from forms of probation, suspension, and disbarment in extreme cases.

Understanding what’s at-risk

A criminal conviction is serious whether it’s a felony and misdemeanor. The consequences in the legal system alone are serious. As an attorney, you can face additional punishment from the State Bar of California. Practicing law is a responsibility and these consequences come with a territory.

What’s at stake is not only your freedom, but your livelihood and ability to choose employment as an attorney. These consequences are why it’s beneficial to have an experienced advocate on your side who knows what’s on the line for you.