Taking the attorney's oath is not just a ritual. It is required for admission to practice law in California.
You may take the oath at an in-person or virtual group swearing-in ceremony organized by your law school, local bar association, or through another group. The State Bar’s Office of Admissions no longer hosts admission ceremonies.
If you are unable to attend an in-person ceremony, you may need to arrange to take the oath one-on-one with an authorized official (see instructions below).
Please note, you cannot be sworn in before your certification for admission has been accepted by the Supreme Court of California and without having received the required form. Please refer to the instructions and FAQs on the Virtual Oath Packet webpage.
If you are unable to attend a group swearing-in ceremony, you may request an authorized official to swear you in. Below are the officials in California authorized to administer the oath. During the COVID-19 pandemic, if you are requesting that an official administer the oath virtually, you must confirm with the officials that they are authorized to do so.
Important note: California notaries public cannot administer the attorney's oath virtually, they can only administer the oath in person.
If you currently live outside of California, it is not necessary for you to return to take the attorney’s oath. An affidavit taken in a foreign country to be used in California may be taken before an ambassador, minister, consul, vice-consul, or consular agent of the United States or before any judge of a court of record having a seal in such foreign country. (Code Civ. Proc. § 2014.)
When an affidavit is taken before a judge or a court in another state or in a foreign country, the genuineness of the signature of the judge, the existence of the court, and the fact that such judge is a member thereof must be certified by the clerk of the court, under the seal thereof. (Code Civ. Proc. § 2015.) Affidavits and oaths made by military personnel are governed by California Civ. Code section 1183.5.
Text of the attorney’s oath is available below for the convenience of any person authorized to administer the oath. This is for reference purposes only. Successful applicants who have satisfied all admissions requirements are required to follow the procedures outlined in the Virtual Oath Packet to be officially sworn in and then subsequently enrolled by the State Bar.
OATH (to be taken before a Notary or other authorized administering officer): I, (licensee name) solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of California, and that I will faithfully discharge the duties of an attorney and counselor at law to the best of my knowledge and ability. As an officer of the court, I will strive to conduct myself at all times with dignity, courtesy and integrity.
Questions? Submit an inquiry in your Applicant Portal.