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Created in 1938, The Virginia State Bar (VSB) is an administrative agency of the Supreme Court of Virginiamarker whose purpose is to regulate, improve and advance the legal profession in Virginiamarker. The Bar was established by an act of the Virginia General Assemblymarker and is delegated the power to issue regulatory opinions that are incorporated into the Code of Virginia. Membership in good standing in the VSB is mandatory for attorneys wishing to practice law in the Commonwealth of Virginia.


The predecessor to the VSB was the Virginia State Bar Association, a voluntary statewide organization founded in 1888 in order to promote the ethical practice of law in Virginia. The Virginia State Bar Association subsequently worked with the legislature in order to establish a mandatory state affiliated agency, and these efforts led to the creation of the VSB in 1938. Upon the establishment of the VSB, the Virginia State Bar Association became simply the Virginia Bar Association, and continued its mission as a voluntary association.

2000 Policy Change

In 2000 the Virginia State Bar changed its policy from the "Code of Professional Responsibility" to the "Professional Guidelines and Rules of Professional Conduct" . In so doing, the Bar discarded the previously existing ethical canons.


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