How am I notified if my hours are deficient?
In January or early February of each year, an Annual Report of CLE hours for the previous calendar year is sent to all active members of the State Bar of Georgia unless an exemption has already been entered. If the attorney has completed all the required CLE hours for the previous year and does not owe any course fees, then the attorney does not need to do anything further. However, if the attorney either needs more hours for the previous year or owes a course fee that is listed on the Annual Report, then he or she has until March 31 to satisfy the deficiency.
What is the Annual Report?
It is a transcript of CLE courses that is sent to all active, non-exempt members in January of each year showing all CLE hours taken for the previous year and indicating all fees owed.
What is the yearly CLE requirement?
12 CLE hours including 1 ethics hour, 1 professionalism hour, 3 trial hours (only required for trial attorneys)
Which members of the State Bar of Georgia are required to complete MCLE?
All active, non-exempt members who are not part of the Transition into Law Practice Program.
Can CLE hours be carried forward?
Can any CLE hours be taken by online or other distance learning format?
By Supreme Court of Georgia Order dated May 14, 2021, lawyers may earn all or any portion of the required 12 hours for 2021 CLE requirement through approved in-house or distance-learning continuing legal education activities. This temporary, partial suspension of Regulations 8 (e) and (15) shall apply to continuing legal education activities completed on or before the grace period of March 31, 2022.
How are CLE exemptions taken by attorneys?
Age 70 exemptions are automatic
Inactive exemptions are automatic for members electing that membership status for a full calendar year.
All other exemptions must be taken by the member annually. Exemption forms can be found here.
How can I best comply with my MCLE requirements?
Take all the required hours before the December 31 deadline.
If your hours are incomplete on December 31, make them up during the grace period, which expires on March 31. This saves the $100 late CLE fee.
If you miss the March 31 deadline, pay the $100 late fee which extends the deadline to September 30. After September 30 an additional $150 in fees are due for a total of $250 for late completion of your CLE requirement.
Monitor your record during the year by logging into your account by clicking here. Some sponsors take several weeks to report your attendance, so check back if a seminar is not listed in your record. If it does not appear, contact the CLE department staff at email@example.com or 404-527-8710.
How can I view my CLE record?
You can check your CLE by logging into your account by clicking here.
What are sponsor fees and attorney fees?
All courses entered into our CLE database are charged a $4 per hour per attorney fee. Sponsors of the seminars are required to pay this fee for courses held in Georgia and for online/distance-learning courses. Attorneys are required to pay this fee if the CLE provider does not pay this fee. An attorney can pay the $4 per hour fee to the State Bar of Georgia when attendance is reported, or can be billed on the CLE transcript. Attorney fees can be paid online throughout the year.
What happens in the event an attorney fails to comply with the Mandatory CLE program?
If an attorney remains in noncompliance, the Supreme Court of Georgia will be notified so that it may enter any order it deems appropriate including suspension from the practice of law until, as a minimum, the deficiency is corrected, all penalty fees are paid, and a reinstatement fee is paid.
Who is exempt from MCLE?
a. Members who are inactive (on their dues status with the Membership Department) for the entire calendar year
b. Out-of-state members who neither practice in Georgia nor represent Georgia clients
c. Out-of-state members who comply with the CLE requirements of their resident state ($60 fee required with this exemption.)
d. Members over age 70
e. Judges who are prohibited from practicing law
f. Designated statewide elected officials
g. Attorneys who establish special circumstances constituting undue hardship
If I am inactive and wish to take CLE hours anyway are there any restrictions?
Up to two years of CLE hours (24 credit hours) taken while inactive can be carried over and applied when you reactivate.
If I live out of state and do not practice in Georgia, am I required to go inactive?
You are not required to change to inactive status. In order to eliminate the CLE requirement if you are not practicing in Georgia and live out of state, you may file an out of state exemption. Please contact CLE at 404-527-8710 for additional information about CLE.
While on inactive status, would I have to take CLE hours? Are there other requirements to maintain inactive status besides paying inactive dues?
You are not required to take CLE hours while you are inactive. There are no other requirements to maintain your inactive status. You may remain inactive for an unlimited amount of time. While you are inactive it is very important to keep your address updated with the Bar and pay your license fee. You may change your address by clicking here.
Would I have to take CLE hours to regain my active status from inactive?
You will owe CLE for the year you activate in as well as any hours that you owed CLE from prior years when you deactivated. These hours would need to be completed by March of the following year.
You will owe CLE for the current year even if you are only active for one day, week, etc. during the year. Be sure to consider this when you are activating at the end of a year.