Attorney Complaints

Montana lawyers are subject to various laws and rules governing their conduct, including the Montana Rules of Professional Conduct. The Montana Supreme Court governs attorney licensing, regulation and discipline. The Court meets these responsibilities, in part, through a regulatory system comprised of the Office of Disciplinary Counsel (ODC) and the Commission on Practice (COP).

The ODC is appointed by and operates under the direct supervision of the Montana Supreme Court. Its roles include intake and process, and investigation and prosecution of complaints against attorneys that are within the Court’s jurisdiction. The ODC’s investigative authority includes matters of:

  • Possible attorney misconduct;
  • Possible attorney disability;
  • Attorney disciplinary and disability proceedings;
  • Escrow account overdraft notifications; and
  • Petitions for reinstatement.

The Montana Supreme Court appoints nine lawyers and five non-lawyers to serve on the COP, which hears and decides complaints against attorneys.  In some cases, the COP makes recommendations to the Court for discipline.

Learn more about the ODC and COP from the Office of Disciplinary Counsel for the State of Montana website.

For concerns about non-attorneys and unauthorized practice of law (UPL), find information from the State Bar of Montana and the Montana Office of Consumer Protection.

Complaint Cover Sheet and Guidelines, from the Office of Disciplinary Counsel

Rules & Statutes 

MCA Title 37, Ch. 61 Attorneys at Law

MONTANA RULES OF PROFESSIONAL CONDUCT (link provided by the State Bar of Montana)

RULES FOR LAWYER DISCIPLINARY ENFORCEMENT (link provided by the State Bar of Montana)

Other Selected Court Rules:

Order (9-22-16); AF 09-0688 (Rule History) - IN RE THE RULES OF PROFESSIONAL CONDUCT

AF 06-0628 (Rule History) - RULES FOR LAWYER DISCIPLINARY ENFORCEMENT

AF 13-0276 (Rule History) - Commission on Character and Fitness;

AF 06-0247 (Rule History) - IN THE MATTER OF THE OFFICE OF DISCIPLINARY COUNSEL

Office of Disciplinary Counsel for the State of Montana website

State Bar of Montana website

A Client’s Bill of Rights, from the State Bar of Montana

Ethics Opinions, from the State Bar of Montana

Unauthorized Practice of Law, from the State Bar of Montana