Montana Pro Bono Requirements
In December 2014, Montana’s Supreme Court ordered the following:
“[T]his Court’s Statewide Pro Bono Coordinator and the State Bar of Montana shall develop a process to give all applicants for the bar examination the opportunity to submit voluntarily a statement of any pro bono law-related activities they have performed as of the date of their application. Neither the information provided in the statement nor an applicant’s choice not to submit a statement will be allowed to affect the applicant’s candidacy for admission to the Montana bar in any way.”
Three purposes for the voluntary statement are articulated:
1. To inform bar applicants of the high value Montana places on the obligation imposed by Rule 6.1 of the Rules of Professional Conduct and to notify them that admitted attorneys are encouraged to submit similar reports annually;
2. To gather non-identifying information and data about pro bono opportunities available to law students and about volunteer services already being provided by bar applicants in order for the Court and the State Bar to evaluate pro bono activities generally and to develop resources for pro bono attorneys; and
3. To provide bar applicants with an opportunity to indicate their interest in receiving information about training and their willingness to be contacted about pro bono opportunities upon admission to the bar.
The reporting process was ordered to be implemented beginning with the February 2016 Montana Bar Examination.