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For Attorneys

The For Attorneys page provides information pertinent to attorneys and their business with the court.


Attorney Volunteer Opportunities

CARE Program | Bankruptcy Self-Help Clinic | Mediation Panel
Local Rules Advisory Committee | Local Rules feedback

Credit Abuse Resistance Education (CARE) Program

The CARE Program at the U.S. Bankruptcy Court - Southern District of California relies on attorneys and others to present programs educating local high school and college students about the pitfalls of credit abuse and student loans. Contact Michele McConnell for more information.


Bankruptcy Self-Help Clinic for Pro Se Filers

The Legal Aid Society of San Diego, Inc. hosts a no-cost Bankruptcy Self-Help Center for Pro Se Filers at the U.S. Bankruptcy Court every Wednesday from 2:00 to 4:00 pm.

Volunteer attorneys are needed for the Legal Aid Society of San Diego Bankruptcy Self-Help Center. Volunteer attorneys either should have prior experience in the representation of consumer debtors in bankruptcy cases, or be willing to undergo a few hours of training. If required, training will be conducted by local bankruptcy attorneys. Volunteer paralegals with bankruptcy experience also may be needed, especially if they are bilingual in Spanish and English. To volunteer, please download and complete the registration form; check the box for the Bankruptcy Self-Help Center. E-mail the form to Sara Raffer Lee (, Senior Attorney / Pro Bono Program Manager.

Visit our Bankruptcy Self-Help Clinic for Pro Se Filers page or the Legal Aid Society for more information.


Mediation Panel

The court maintains a list of qualified persons who agree to serve as mediators in contested matters and adversary proceedings pending before the court.  A list of eligible mediators is available here.

To volunteer for this program, a person should submit an application to the Clerk. The application must set forth the qualifications described in subsection (a) or (b) and must conform in format to Form CSD 4001 - Application to Join Voluntary Mediation Panel.

Attorney Qualifications

To qualify for service on the Voluntary Mediation Panel, an attorney must certify to the court that the attorney meets the following minimum qualifications:

  • the attorney is an active member of the State Bar of California and is duly licensed to practice before the courts of the State of California and the Federal courts for the Southern District of California;
  • the attorney has been admitted to practice in a federal court for at least four years; and
  • the attorney has served as the attorney of record for at least three bankruptcy cases from commencement through conclusion (i.e., confirmation of a plan or discharge) or has served as the attorney of record for a party in interest for at least three or more adversary proceedings or contested matters from commencement through completion (i.e., judgment, order, or stipulated settlement); or has had other substantially equivalent bankruptcy experience.

Non-Attorney Qualifications

To qualify for service on the Voluntary Mediation Panel, a non-attorney must certify to the court that the following qualifications are met:

  • the person is a member of the panel of trustees or examiners maintained by the Office of the United States Trustee; or
  • has served in at least three bankruptcy matters as either a bankruptcy examiner or Certified Public Accountant (licensed in the State of California) for a trustee debtor in possession; or has substantially equivalent bankruptcy experience.

Detailed information about the mediation process can be found in the court's Administrative Procedures.


Local Rules Advisory Committee

The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of California relies on a standing Local Rules Advisory Committee to provide input, oversight, and improvement in relation to administrative matters and our Local Rules and forms. Judge Christopher Latham oversees the committee's work, along with Michael Williams, Clerk of Court. The committee currently meets quarterly, and solicitation of new members occurs in late Fall of each year, depending on the expiration of the committee members' terms. Members are appointed by the court for three-year terms.


Local Rules feedback

To propose a revision to a Local Bankruptcy Rule (LBR), the Administrative Procedures, or a Local Court Form, send an E-mail to with the following information:

  • Requesters name, title, E-mail address, phone number, office, or department
  • Proposed new or revised LBR / Form or Administrative Procedure.  If an existing item, identify the LBR number or Administrative Procedure section or form number.
  • Reason for the request or change
  • Proposed revision