About ACDLA

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The Purpose of ACDLA

The Association is formed exclusively for charitable, scientific and educational purposes, including without limitation, the following purposes:

  • To protect and ensure by the rule of law, those individual rights guaranteed by the Alabama and Federal Constitutions in criminal cases; to resist the efforts which are constantly being made to curtail such rights; to encourage cooperation between lawyers engaged in furtherance of such objectives through educational programs and other assistance, to promote justice and the common good;
  • To promote study and research in the field of criminal defense law and the related arts;
  • To disseminate by lecture, seminars, and publications, the advancement of knowledge of the law as it relates and is ancillary to the field of criminal defense practice;
  • To promote and lobby in favor of the proper administration of criminal justice;
  • To foster, maintain and encourage the integrity, independence, and expertise of defense lawyers in criminal cases; and,
  • To foster periodic meetings of defense lawyers and to provide a forum for material exchange of information regarding the administration of criminal justice and thereby concern itself with the protection of individual rights and the improvement of criminal law, its practices and procedures.

Membership Benefits

  • ACDLA’s own publications, including issues of The Guardian, which highlights recent Alabama and Federal decisions, current activities of the ACDLA, and other practice aids.
  • Reduced registration on outstanding educational programs featuring recognized experts on practical aspects of defense of criminal cases.
  • Membership on a password-protected listserv where members can post questions 24x7 to peer criminal defense attorneys.
  • Access to a password protected Members-only Legal Documents Library on the ACDLA web page. This library is a searchable database of briefs, motions, and other documents submitted by members for use by other members.
  • An organization through which criminal defense lawyers can formulate and express their position on legislation, court reform, important cases affecting rights of defendants through Amicus curi³ activity, and other matters affecting the administration of criminal justice in Alabama.

Eligibility & Dues

A member in good standing of the Alabama State Bar who is interested or who is engaged in the defense of criminal cases is eligible for membership upon approval of his or her application and receipt of the annual membership dues. Members of the judiciary and those regularly employed in a prosecutorial office are not eligible.

Membership Categories and Annual Dues

Lifetime Membership: One-time dues: $7,500. Payment method: Lump sum payment of $7,000 or $1,000 per year for six years with $1,500 first installment. Benefits: No dues again, FREE seminars, listing in the Guardian, Lifetime Membership certificate, Guardian subscription, full access to the ACDLA website, and Listserv membership.

President's Club: Dues: $600 per year. Benefits: Summer Seminar FREE, listing in the Guardian, President's Club certificate, Guardian subscription, full access to ACDLA website, Listserv membership.

Regular: Dues: (11+years) $200 (3-10 years) $150 per year for members of Bar for 3 years or more. Benefits: Early-bird discounts for seminars and other events, FREE admittance to annual "Four Corners" workshops, membership certificate, Guardian subscription, full access to ACDLA website, Listserv membership.

New Lawyers: Dues: $75. New lawyers are a member of the Bar for less than three years.  Benefits: Early-bird discounts for seminars and other events, FREE admittance to annual "Four Corners" workships, Guardian subscription, full access to ACDLA website, the ACDLA Listserv, and more.

Associate Members:  Associate Members: Dues $150.  Persons whose duties and responsibilities are part of, or contribute to, the defense of criminal cases and the goals of the Association. Such members might include, but not be limited to experts, paralegals, vendors and investigators. This member receives publications and discounts to all CLEs but does not participate on the listserv and is not entitled to vote.

Mission Statement

The Alabama Criminal Defense Lawyers Association ( ACDLA) serves as the unified voice of the state’s criminal defense community. Its primary mission is to promote excellence in the practice of criminal law. This mission benefits both criminal defense attorneys and criminal defendants as a whole.