Lawyer Assistance Program Oversight

Appointment Information

The Lawyer Assistance Program (LAP) was implemented in January 2002 ( Senate Bill 479).  The program helps protect the public, the courts and the legal profession by offering education and rehabilitative programs to State Bar members suffering from substance abuse and mental illness. 

The State Bar established the LAP Oversight Committee to oversee the operation of the program and to establish practices and procedures to support the administration of the program. 

The committee's 12 members include six appointed by the State Bar, four by the Governor’s Office and one each by the Senate Rules Committee and the Assembly Speaker.

Members serve four-year renewable terms, which run Jan. 1-Dec. 31. Incumbents whose terms are due to expire may apply for reappointment.

By statute, the six State Bar's appointments must include:

    1. Two members who are licensed mental health professionals with knowledge and expertise in the identification and treatment of substance abuse and mental illness;
    2. One member who is a physician with knowledge and expertise in the identification and treatment of alcoholism and substance abuse;
    3. One member of the board of directors of a statewide nonprofit organization established for the purpose of assisting lawyers with alcohol or substance abuse problems, which has been in continuous operation for a minimum of five years; and
    4. Two members who are lawyers, at least one of whom is in recovery and has at least five years of continuous sobriety.

Available Positions:  2

  • One position must be filled by a licensed medical health professional with knowledge and expertise in the identification and treatment of substance abuse and mental illness.
  • The second position must be filled by a member of the board of directors of a statewide nonprofit organization established for the purpose of assisting lawyers with alcohol or substance abuse problems, which has been in continuous operation for a minimum of five years.
  • Terms begin Jan. 1, 2015 and expire Dec. 31, 2018. 
  • Meetings per year:  4 (two in San Francisco and two in Los Angeles; the time commitment between meetings is one to two hours, a combination of conference calls and reading materials to prepare for meeting)
  • Chair:  Philip Belleville, Rolling Hills
  • Staff contact:  Richard Carlton 415-538-2355

Application Deadline:  June 2, 2014.  All applicants, including incumbents applying for reappointment, must file the State Bar 2014-15 Appointment Application form (Word fill-in, Adobe PDF).