How to Join

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  • The D.C. Court of Appeals Committee on Admissions is responsible for determining whether an applicant will be licensed to practice law in the District of Columbia.

  • The D.C. Bar is a separate entity from the D.C. Court of Appeals Committee on Admissions and is not involved in the administration of the bar exam or determining who will be admitted to the practice of law in D.C.

  • The Committee on Admissions oversees the application process through the swearing-in process. After individuals are admitted and sworn in, they will begin to receive service from the D.C. Bar.

  • To become a member of the D.C. Bar, whether by exam, motion, or special legal consultant, visit the Committee on Admissions at

  • To check the status of your application, please use the create message button on the user home page to directly contact your staff reviewer.

  • For complete details, please visit the Committee on Admissions at

Application Procedure for First Time Exam Takers

The exam application has two parts: setting up an account through the Committee on Admissions (“COA”) website and completing the character and fitness questionnaire. (Please note that fees are associated with each part of the process).

For complete details, please visit the Committee on Admissions at

  1. First-time applicants may open an account by following the link on the COA website. In creating your account, please use the full name you wish to appear on your bar license.  Select the appropriate application category and follow all instructions carefully to avoid delays in the processing of your application.
  2. Applicants who have previously applied may access their account either through their saved link or through the COA website at
  3. You must have an NCBE number to apply for admission. If you have not already done so, create an account for an NCBE number on the website of the National Conference of Bar Examiners website.
  4. Applicants who have previously completed a character and fitness application within the last 4 years will be automatically redirected to an abbreviated application based on their responses to registration screening questions. Applicants who are retaking the exam in D.C., or who have taken the exam in another jurisdiction since a prior application, must list the month, date, and location of the exam.
  5. Applicants who submitted a character and fitness application to the District of Columbia more than 4 years prior to the submission of a new application must complete a new character and fitness application.
  6. Once you have uploaded the required documents, you must submit the application fee and make your payment online. Please see “Fees & Deadlines” on the COA website for the most current information on application fees.
  7. Applicants will be required to register a computer with the software vendor for exam delivery. The laptop fee will be posted with the exam instructions. Information regarding registering your computer for the exam registration will be emailed to applicants 6 to 8 weeks before the exam. The registration period will be open for 7 to 10 days. Applicants who do not register their computers will not be able to take the bar exam. Applicants are responsible for checking their email, email spam boxes, and the COA website for information.

For complete details, please visit the Committee on Admissions at

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