US LAWS, STATUTES and CODES : Chan Robles Virtual Law Library USA Supreme Court Decisions | Resolutions : Chan Robles Virtual Law Library

ChanRobles™ Virtual Law Library™ |™   
Main Index Repository of Laws, Statutes and Codes Latest Philippine Supreme Court Decisions Chan Robles Virtual Law Library Latest Legal Updates Philippine Legal Resources Significant Philippine Legal Resources Worldwide Legal Resources Philippine Supreme Court Decisions United States Legal Resources United States Supreme Court Jurisprudence ChanRobles LawTube - Social Network

ChanRobles Internet Bar Review : DebtKollect Company, Inc. - Debt Collection Firm Intellectual Property Division - Chan Robles Law Firm

Philippine Supreme Court DecisionsChanRobles On-Line Bar Review

google search for chanrobles.comSearch for


Subscribe to Cases that cite 401 U. S. 1 RSS feed for this section

U.S. Supreme Court

Baird v. State Bar of Arizona, 401 U.S. 1 (1971)

Baird v. State Bar of Arizona

No. 15

Argued December 9, 1969

Reargued October 14, 1970

Decided February 23, 1971

401 U.S. 1


Petitioner, who had passed the Arizona written bar examination, listed all the organizations to which she belonged since age 16 on the Bar Committee questionnaire, but refused to answer the question (No. 27) whether she had ever been a member of the Communist Party or any organization "that advocates overthrow of the United States Government by force or violence." The committee declined to process her application further or recommend her admission to the bar. The Arizona Supreme Court denied her petition for an order to show cause why she should not be admitted to practice law.

Held: The judgment of the Arizona Supreme Court is reversed and the case is remanded. Pp. 401 U. S. 5-10.

Reversed and remanded.

MR. JUSTICE BLACK, joined by MR. JUSTICE DOUGLAS MR. JUSTICE BRENNAN, and MR. JUSTICE MARSHALL concluded that views and beliefs are immune from bar committee inquisitions designed to lay a foundation for barring an applicant from the practice of law, which is a matter of right for one qualified by learning and moral character. Pp. 401 U. S. 5-8.

(a) A State's power to inquire about a person's beliefs or associations is limited by the First Amendment, which prohibits a State from excluding a person from a profession solely because of membership in a political organization or because of his beliefs. Pp 401 U. S. 5-6. chanroblesvirtualawlibrary

Page 401 U. S. 2

(b) While Arizona has a legitimate interest in determining whether petitioner's character and professional competence qualify her to practice law, petitioner has supplied the Bar Committee with extensive personal and professional information to assist its determination. Pp. 401 U. S. 6-7.

MR. JUSTICE STEWART concluded that Question 27 is constitutionally infirm under the First and Fourteenth Amendments, as it is not confined to knowing membership in any organization that advocates violent overthrow of the Government, and it is an inquiry into the proscribed area of political beliefs. Pp. 401 U. S. 9-10.

BLACK, J., announced the Court's judgment and delivered an opinion, in which DOUGLAS, BRENNAN, and MARSHALL, JJ., joined. STEWART, J., filed an opinion concurring in the judgment, post, p. 401 U. S. 9. HARLAN, J., filed a dissenting opinion, post, p. 401 U. S. 34. WHITE, J., filed a dissenting opinion, post, p. 401 U. S. 10. BLACKMUN, J., filed a dissenting opinion, in which BURGER, C.J.,and HARLAN and WHITE, JJ., joined, post, p. 401 U. S. 11.

ChanRobles™ LawTube

google search for Search for

Supreme Court Decisions Philippine Supreme Court DecisionsUS Supreme Court Decisions



Browse By ->> Volume


Browse By ->> Year


  Copyright © ChanRobles Publishing Company | Disclaimer | E-mail Restrictions
ChanRobles™ Virtual Law Library |™