The Taipei Advocates Union was established during the period Taiwan was under Japanese occupation. In 1945, the Republic of China government assumed control of Taiwan, as well as the Taiwan High Court and the Taipei District Court, from the Japanese Governor-General's Office. On the same day, lawyers practicing in Taipei merged the Taipei Advocates Union and the Law Society to form the Taipei Bar Association (TBA). On August 15, 1947, the TBA was officially established under the Lawyers Act.
The history and development of the TBA may be roughly divided into the following periods:
- From 1945-1950, the number of members increased from 19 to 182, and the majority of them were attorneys who came from mainland China.
- From 1951 to 1962, the number of members increased to 488; at the time, most of them were attorneys qualified through examination and certification. However, beginning in the late 1950s, attorneys who received official college law education joined the association after passing the high level civil servant recruitment test and assumed managerial positions in the association.
- Between 1963 and 1971, with greater human resources and finances at its disposal, the association attempted to make improvements in its members' practice. For instance, various POA templates were designed to be purchased for use by members to facilitate signing between the members and clients, as well as to increase the association's income. In 1964, the TBA amended its Articles of Association and created the Lawyers' Disciplinary Committee and the Editing Committee of Lawyers Journal to oversee practicing attorneys' professional conduct and TBA publications. During this period, the membership grew slowly; by 1971 there were 509 members.
- Between 1972 and 1981, in addition to striving for the members' rights, the TBA endeavored to enhance legal professionalism and took part in social activism. In 1979, the TBA's initiative that lawyers be recognized as qualified to provide land registrations service was supported and approved by the Ministry of the Interior. At the end of June in 1979, the first monthly Lawyers Journal was published. In 1981, a project to construct a TBA building was proposed. During the decade, the membership almost doubled, with a total of 896 members.
- Between 1982 and 1990, the TBA membership attained 1,286. The TBA maintained its involvement in social activism. In 1983, the TBA's civil legal aid service began with the prescription of the Guidelines of TBA Legal Aid. In 1987, after martial law was lifted in Taiwan, the TBA championed human rights issues more diligently than before and promoted international legal interchanges.
- Between 1990 and 2000, the 19th board of directors pronounced the "Make Voices Heard Externally and Contribute Efforts Internally" as the key driving principle of the association. In addition to announcing the Ten Constitutional Reform Declaration for Facing the Division of National Territory, the TBA took to social movements by participating in the May 20 Pro-democracy March. In July 1990, Lawyers Journal was renamed Lawyers Magazine and published nationally. In 1994, a resolution was adopted by the general assembly to set up the TBA office, and in January 1996, the current TBA office was purchased with donations from then members. In 1996, the 21st board of directors set up the Lawyers and Humanities Committee, and organized various humanities-related activities for members. The scope of the TBA's activities thus began to expand. In 1999, the Members' Continuing Education Policy was promulgated and a regular continuing education mechanism was instituted. In 2000, policy regarding lawyers' continuing education was officially incorporated in the TBA's Articles of Association. During the period, membership grew nearly twofold, to 2,440.
- Between 2001 and 2010, the TBA proposed amendments to the Lawyers Act to abolish the limitation on bar admissions, to adopt Practice Nationwide with One Bar Admission, and to reform the Taiwan Bar Association. In 2003, the TBA held its first Law and Literature Award Contest. In order to handle the related affairs, the board of directors established the Publication Committee and Law and Literature Committee. In 2004, the Rules Governing Mediation and Resolution of Disputes over Client-Attorney Contract was established to step up self-regulation of practicing attorneys. In 2005, TBA in The 20th Century was published. In 2005, the 24th board of directors unveiled the "Service Is the First Priority; Values & Beliefs Are Legacy Policy" as the TBA's principle for continuing development. In 2007, the Criminal Defense Technique Research and Study training program was launched. In 2008, the Rules Governing Issuance of Certificates for completing Continuing Education and the Special Field Training Courses Promotion Guidelines were put in place to integrate and improve the continuing education system. In 2009, Lawyers Magazine was renamed Dissent, a quarterly that reaches out to the public by explaining recondite legal concepts using plain language and straight forward prose. In 2010, the TBA's Articles of Association was revised to reflect amendments to the Lawyers Act. There are now two types of membership, principal membership and non-principal membership. Furthermore, membership fees were lowered to reduce the financial burden of members. The TBA also pioneered the planning and development of practicing attorneys' liabilities insurance for TBA members to minimize lawyers' risks and protect the rights and interests of clients.