Admission by Motion Information and Application

Information on this page:



Rules and Regulations

Character and Fitness


Admission Requirements

Washington Law Component

Qualifications for Admission by Motion

Lawyers admitted to the practice of law in other states or territories of the United States or the District of Columbia are not required to sit for the bar examination if they present satisfactory proof of admission and current good standing, together with proof of active legal experience for at least three of the past five years immediately preceding the filing of the application.

Application for admission by motion under APR 3(c) may be filed online at anytime. Note that APR 5(b) requires that Admission by Motion applicants must complete the preadmission requirements within one year from the date of filing the application. After one year, applicants must submit a new application and fee. Applicants may withdraw the application at any time subject to a $300 non-refundable administrative fee. Fees paid to the National Conference of Bar Examiners are also non-refundable.

Rules and Regulations


Filing an Application for Admission by Motion

The application for Admission by Motion must be completed online through the WSBA Online Admissions System. In addition to filing the application online, applicants must upload the following documents when complete to the online application prior to submitting the application:

  • One signed and notarized Authorization and Release Form. Do not alter this form.
  • One signed Good Moral Character certificate; and 
  • One Certificate of Good Standing from each jurisdiction in which you are or have ever been admitted to practice. 

All documents filed with the WSBA must include an Applicant ID number. It is preferable that documents and files attached to the application be in PDF format. Please format files so that they are as small as possible.

Admission by Motion applicants may submit a completed application at anytime. Approval takes approximately four to six months from the time an application is submitted. Once the application is approved, applicants will receive an email notification. Additional information is provided in our application instructions for admission.

Application Fees

  • U.S. attorneys: $620 + NCBE investigation fee 
  • All attorney applicants must submit a separate investigation fee directly to the National Conference of Bar Examiners. Complete the NCBE payment form and mail payment with the form directly to the NCBE together with two original signed and notarized Authorization and Release Forms. 

Character and Fitness

All applicants are subject to a character and fitness review prior to being admitted to practice law in Washington State. The practice of law is a privilege, not a right. Admission may be withheld pending a hearing before the Character and Fitness Board and final determination regarding whether the applicants have met their burden of proving that they are of good moral character and fit to practice law. Factors considered by Admissions staff and Bar Counsel when determining whether an applicant should be referred to the Character and Fitness Board are set forth in APR 24.2(a).

Admission Requirements

After an application is submitted approved for admission, there are additional requirements that must be met prior to admission. These requirements will be displayed on your online application page.

Washington Law Component

Admission by Motion applicants are required to take and pass the Washington Law Component test (WLC), which includes 15 outlines on various subjects of law. Applicants will be able to access the test from their online admissions account after submitting an application and paying the application fee. There are 60 multiple-choice questions to be answered in no more than four hours. Applicants will have access to the WLC research materials while taking the test. Answering 80% of the questions correctly is required to pass.

Any discrepancy or conflict between the information provided here and the rules and regulations set by the Washington State Supreme Court, or the bylaws and policies of the Washington State Bar Association, is unintentional and will be resolved in favor of strict compliance with the rules, regulations, bylaws and policies.

Application Instructions

Find out everything you need to know about submitting an application.

Start an Application

Create an account and apply online. This is not the in-house counsel application.

Washington Law Component

Admission Policies

New Admittee Process Instructions

Rules and Regulations

Links to the APR, RPC, Bylaws, etc.