California Military Attorneys

California Rules (Military)Rule 9.41 of the California Rules of Court allows judge advocates licensed outside of California to make limited appearances in California.

Judge advocates must be members of good standing and eligible to practice before the Bar of any United States court or the highest court in any state, territory, or insular possession in the United States.

In the discretion of a California court, judge advocates may be permitted to appear in that court to represent a person in the military service in a particular cause pending before that court under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, 50 US Code Appendix ยง 501, et seq.

The following requirements apply:

  • The attorney will be made available by the cognizant Judge Advocate General or a duly designated representative. Under no circumstances is the determination of availability of a judge advocate to be made by any California court or reviewed by any California court.
  • The court must find that retaining civilian counsel would cause substantial hardship for the person in military service or that person’s family. The court may take judicial notice of the prevailing pay scales for persons in the military service when determining the likelihood of substantial hardship.
  • The court appoints a judge advocate as attorney to represent the person in military service under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act.

Judge advocates are subject to the jurisdiction of the California courts for disciplinary purposes to the same extent as members of the California Bar. Judge advocates must become familiar with and comply with the standards of professional conduct

Application and Certification
The clerk of court considering appointment of a judge advocate is required to provide written notice to all parties who have appeared in the matter. A copy of the notice will be filed with the court. Opposing parties have 10 days to file a written objection unless the court prescribes a shorter period. If the court holds a hearing, notice of the hearing must