UPDATE: The Washington Supreme Court recently sent us a letter stating that it has decided to phase out issuing new LLLT licenses and would allow those in the pipeline to become licensed through July 31, 2021. You can also find Justice Madsen’s letter in dissent here.
At its meeting on June 8, the LLLT Board determined that it will seek review of this decision. The LLLT Board will be requesting the Court reconsider its decision or at a minimum allow more time for the LLLT candidates to complete the licensing requirements.
On July 10 the Washington Supreme Court provided an update regarding its decision to sunset the LLLT program on July 31, 2021. The Court has made two modifications to its June 4, 2020 decision:
- The substantive law-related work experience requirement for licensing has been reduced from 3,000 to 1,500 hours.
- Candidates who have met all other requirements by July 31, 2021 now have until July 31, 2022 to complete their substantive law-related work experience under the supervision of a lawyer.
We will update this website when we have more information. In the meantime, WSBA staff will continue working with students and LLLT candidates to understand their individual timelines and provide information on deadlines and requirements. If you are seeking information on your pathway please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you would like to provide comments to the Supreme Court about this decision, you may email the Supreme Court at email@example.com.
A Unique Option for Affordable Legal Services
Washington is the first state in the country to offer an affordable legal services option to help meet the needs of those unable to afford the services of a lawyer. A limited license legal technician, also known as a legal technician or a LLLT, is licensed by the Washington Supreme Court to advise and assist people going through divorce, child custody, and other family law matters in Washington. Look for other practice areas to be approved in the future.
Legal technicians consult with and advise clients, complete and file necessary court documents, assist pro se clients at certain types of hearings, and advise and participate in mediation, arbitration, and settlement conferences. They also help with court scheduling and support clients in navigating the legal system. LLLTs are well trained, experienced, and competent legal professionals who may be able to provide you with the legal help you need.
Diploma Privilege Granted for Summer Bar Exam
On Friday, June 12, 2020, the Washington Supreme Court issued an order stating “applicants for admission to practice law who are currently registered for either the July or September 2020 bar examination and who have received a Juris Doctorate degree from an ABA accredited law school, and applicants currently registered to take the LLLT examination scheduled for July 2020, are granted the option of receiving a diploma privilege to practice in Washington.”
All qualified applicants who are currently registered for the July 2020 LLLT exam will receive diploma privilege.
Recent Amendments to APR 28 and LLLT Rules of Professional Conduct
On May 1, 2019, the Washington Supreme Court adopted amendments to APR 28, Appendix APR 28 regulations, the LLLT RPC and the lawyer RPC. These amendments, which expand the LLLT scope of practice, are effective when published, which was on June 4, 2019. However, as permitted by Appendix APR 28 Regulation 3C, the LLLT Board is requiring all LLLTs to complete supplemental education prior to engaging in the expanded scope permitted by these amendments. LLLTs must complete the supplemental education by Feb. 1, 2021, in order to maintain their LLLT license.
LLLT Supplemental Education
The required online supplemental education about the LLLT scope enhancements is now available for purchase through the WSBA CLE Store. The education sessions are open to only LLLTs and individuals who have completed or are enrolled in the Family Law courses. The in-person course will be offered once more in 2020. Contact LLLT@wsba.org for more information.
Limited License Legal Technicians who have completed the mandatory supplemental education on the enhanced scope of practice, as required by the LLLT Board:
Alicia Ann Degon (#131LLLT)
Almira Dawn Severin (#121LLLT)
Angela K. Wright (#103LLLT)
Barbara G. Esselstrom (#105LLLT)
Barbara Westfall (#149LLLT)
Camdyn Joiner (#146LLLT)
Candace Sanders (#107LLLT)
Christine Camper (#129LLLT)
Christine M. Carpenter (#113LLLT)
Christine Marie Downing (#139LLLT)
Cindy K. Stewart (#106LLLT)
Deborah Ann Aubrey (#112LLLT)
Derek Ralph (#145LLLT)
Dianne Balch Loepker (#132LLLT)
Fabian Fereshtehfar (#110LLLT)
Janis Kipp (#141LLLT)
Jeanne Marie Barrans (#114LLLT)
Jeffrey Allen Kinstler (#108LLLT)
Jennifer Leigh Petersen (#104LLLT)
Jennifer Ortega (#118LLLT)
Joshua Dawson (#147LLLT)
Kellie W. Dightman (#116LLLT)
Kimberly Anne Lancaster (#109LLLT)
Laura Genoves (#122LLLT)
Lesli Ashley (#148LLLT)
Lorena G. Mendoza (#140LLLT)
Marya Christine Noyes (#123LLLT)
Melodie J. Nicholson (#115LLLT)
Michelle M. Cummings (#101LLLT)
Michelle Anne White (#126LLLT)
Patricia Reutimann, (#125LLLT)
Priscilla A. Selden (#102LLLT)
Renee Elizabeth Janes (#134LLLT)
Rory Hardy (#143LLLT)
Sarah Bové (#124LLLT)
Sherri R. Farr (#133LLLT)
Stacey L. McKee (#137LLLT)
Tamara Michelle Garrison (#120LLLT)
Tonyha Davies (#142LLLT)
Tracy Swanlund (#117LLLT)
Vanessa E. Ridgway (#119LLLT)
Updated August 14, 2020
And a special shout-out and sincere thank you to all who served as instructors for the LLLT supplemental education. We could not have done this without you!
Hon. Doug Federspiel
Professor Gail Hammer
Hon. Jonathon Lack
Professor Terry Price
Hon. Timothy Ashcraft
Rules and Regulations
The LLLT Board
The Limited License Legal Technician Board has ongoing authority granted by the Washington Supreme Court, under APR 28, to adopt policies for the administration of the LLLT license and to recommend and develop new practice areas.
Become an LLLT
Find out how to get a LLLT license, including education, examination and experience requirements.
New Practice Areas Under Consideration
The LLLT Board is studying two new proposed practice areas for LLLTs:
Eviction & Debt Assistance
This proposed practice area is designed to provide legal assistance for low and moderate income people who are facing certain housing and financial matters and other problems which contribute to consumer credit problems, and those seeking economic protection or assistance with legal financial obligations.
This proposed practice area is designed to provide a legal assistance option for pro se parties that appear in administrative hearings before the Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH).
Opportunities for Colleges to Provide the LLLT Core Curriculum
Colleges may apply to the LLLT Board to offer the legal technician core curriculum. If your college is interested in applying, please review the following:
Program applications should be mailed to the WSBA or emailed to LLLT@wsba.org.
In the News — Media coverage of Washington's Legal Technician License
- Oct. 25, 2019: Limited Legal License Programs Are Important to Opening Access, But They Need to Be Unencumbered
- Nov. 27, 2018: Seattle University Law Review Law by Non-Lawyers: The Limit to Limited License Legal Technicians Increasing Access to Justice
- Nov. 19, 2018: Legal Technicians Step In To Fight Justice Gap
- Sept. 6, 2018: Can licensed legal paraprofessionals narrow the access-to-justice gap?
- July 25, 2018: Who Accesses Justice? The rise of limited license legal technicians
- July 25, 2018: Framing the Paraprofessional Debate - Views from both sides of the fault line
- July 24, 2018: Radio Episode #27: Limited License Legal Technician
- July 18, 2018: Can't Afford a Lawyer
- June 29, 2018: How the Access-to-Justice Crisis Affects Small Business Owners
- May 11, 2018: The Path Forward for the Legal Technician Model
Please Note : All applicants are subject to a character and fitness review prior to being admitted to practice law in Washington. 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 Washington Supreme Court Admission and Practice Rules (APR) 20-24.2(a).
Any discrepancy or conflict between the information provided here and the rules and regulations set by the Washington 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.