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Frequently Asked Questions






What is Knights of the Bar? - Knights of the Bar is an exclusive membership of elite attorneys selected for their outstanding levels of leadership, excellence and achievement in the practice of law.

How is Knights of the Bar different from other Honorary Attorney Societies?  Most honorary lawyer societies recognize achievement in one particular area of law such as trial practice, estate planning, family law etc.  Knights recognizes attorneys in all areas of practice.  Also, most honorary legal societies focus on technical ability and achievement and do not emphasize bar leadership.  Knights of the Bar assesses excellence and achievement in each practice area, but also places emphasis on leadership in the profession as a key criterion for selection.

What are the Benefits of Joining Knights of the Bar? - Attorneys who are invited to join Knights of the Bar are among the best lawyers in the profession.  Members are entitled to indicate their selection to Knights of the Bar in web profiles and other promotional materials, so clients and other lawyers know they have earned a place among the legal elite.  Knights of the Bar also maintains an online registry of members and advertises online with Google and Yahoo to continually bring traffic of almost 5,000 potential clients per month to the site.

How are Knights selected?  -  Attorneys can join the membership only by invitation upon submission of an application or through recommendation after a careful review of their career accomplishments.  They must meet clearly defined, objective criteria to be invited to the membership.

Is Knights of the Bar Selection Based upon Peer Review by other Attorneys? - Knights of the Bar does not conduct its own peer review survey.  However, Knights of the Bar requires as a threshold for consideration that attorneys be rated AV® by Martindale Hubbell®, the highest peer review rating by one of the world's most respected attorney listing publications.

Shouldn't Peer Review be Enough? - Peer review is a method of identifying outstanding attorneys.  Attorneys are familiar with the skills and abilities of their peers, and have good insight into which are the best lawyers.  However, peer review is a subjective analysis that can sometimes be affected by popularity, the notoriety of one big verdict, or association with a prominent firm.  Knights of the Bar starts with those best regarded by their peers and qualifies them further based upon their level of leadership in the profession, their achievements in the practice, and their ability to bring business into the firm.  The result is a much more exclusive group of only the very best attorneys in the profession.

Do Lawyers have to Qualify Every Year?  Unlike most peer review honors that send out ballots each year to see who is most in favor, Knights of the Bar rewards superlative accomplishment and leadership over an entire career.  All Knights are Life Members, having earned that distinction through consistent outstanding performance and through dedication to leadership in the profession over a span of many years.

Why is Leadership Important?  - Knights of the Bar examines leadership in three areas: Bar Leadership, Publications and Lectures.  There is a very high correlation between these leadership activities and prominence in the profession.  Attorneys who show the initiative to lead their profession in these ways invariably also lead in legal ability and effectiveness.  Being elected to bar leadership is usually an endorsement by its members of the attorney's effectiveness in the organization.  It can be looked upon as another kind of peer review.  Attorneys who are frequently asked to lecture and publish generally have special knowledge that other attorneys want to obtain.  This is a strong indication of technical expertise in the practice of law.  In a larger sense, this dedication to the profession indicates a strong commitment to the practice of law, which is usually associated with a high level of excellence by the practitioner.

Why are Originations Important? - Knights of the Bar requires that certain fee origination thresholds be met to be considered for membership.  While this may seem to be an unusual criterion to the general public, most attorneys are acutely aware why this is important.  Fee originations are highly correlated with an attorney's reputation in the marketplace and his or her ability to consistently deliver high quality legal work.  Law is a service business that is greatly dependent on referrals from other professionals and former clients to build a practice.  Over many years, a large and successful practice is invariably built on a foundation of outstanding legal work.  The greater the confidence clients and other professionals have in an attorney, the greater the number of significant matters he or she will be referred.  If a lawyer is originating $1 Million in fees per year, it is because he or she is attracting complex matters, prominent clients, matters of great consequence, or all of the above.  This kind of responsibility is only entrusted to the most elite attorneys in the profession, who have built reputations for extraordinary expertise in the most complicated and important issues in their area of law.

Yes, but what about TV advertisers? - While it is true that lawyers that use mass market advertising to bring in clients often can have very high originations, they are seldom rated highly by their peers, nor are they active in leading the profession.  Most of these lawyers refer the important or complex cases to other, more prominent attorneys, and do not qualify for Knights of the Bar under the other criteria.

Where does Knights of the Bar find its Attorneys? - We are constantly reviewing the backgrounds of top attorneys based upon public records available through various publications, and by using biographical information supplied on law firm web sites.  If an attorney's listed accomplishments are obviously within our selection criteria, he or she will be sent a spontaneous invitation to join.  Knights of the Bar also receives recommendations from other lawyers and applications from lawyers themselves who submit their biographies for consideration.  These backgrounds are carefully reviewed and if they fall within our guidelines, they are sent an invitation.

I don't see my practice focus listed.  Can categories be added? - Yes. If an attorney is added to the membership who has a special area of practice that is not listed and would like to have the category listed, it can be added.

How is position determined in the Online Registry - Position on any given listing page is based on merit then seniority.  Diplomats will be listed first, Fellows second and Associates third.  Within a given category, members are listed based upon seniority, with the members who listed earlier given priority.  Members that opt out of the online registry will lose position if they decide to return and will move to the bottom of their group.

In how many practice categories can I be listed? - Fellows and Associates  can be listed in up to three categories, Diplomats can be listed in up to five categories.



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