All the States that are Changing their MCLE Rules due to the Coronavirus Pandemic
In response to COVID-19, conferences all over the world have been canceled. In response, many states have temporarily suspended the requirements that their attorneys attend in-person, and even live webcast, CLE. These measures will help prevent the spread of the virus and alleviate some pressures on attorneys arising from major uncertainties in the legal issues affecting their clients - not to mention increased childcare demands. Lawyers in states that have made these changes can currently fulfill their entire CLE requirement online. Below is a running list of states that have made this change, which will be updated as we get more information.
This post was last updated on March 26, 2020 at 11:17 am EST.
- Alabama: No changes
- Alaska: No changes
- Arizona: No changes
- Arkansas: No changes
- California: No changes
- Colorado: No changes
- Connecticut: No changes
- Delaware: The Supreme Court of the State of Delaware issued an order temporarily waiving the Live credit requirement for attorneys who have not yet completed their 2019 requirement. If you qualify for this, you must (1) verify your transcript and plan to make up your deficiency by April 30, 2020, (2) complete the plan by May 31, 2020, and (3) report completion by June 15, 2020.
- Florida: The Florida Bar issued an order extending CLE reporting deadlines for February, March, April and May 2020 to August 31, 2020. All other annual compliance deadlines remain the same.
- Georgia: The Supreme Court of Georgia issued an order temporarily waiving the 6 hour in-person CLE requirement until the late CLE deadline on March 31, 2020. Georgia attorneys can now complete their full 12 hour requirement through self-study, in-house or online seminars. In addition, Georgia attorneys who are still completing their 2019 requirement have an additional grace period to complete, ending on April 30, 2020, however, if attorneys want to take advantage of the format waiver, online seminars should be taken on or before March 31.
- Hawaii: No changes
- Idaho: No changes
- Illinois: No changes
- Indiana: No changes
- Iowa: The Iowa Supreme Court has issued an order temporarily waiving the credit limitation for unmoderated courses. Iowa attorneys may complete any portion of their requirement as On-Demand courses until further notice from the Iowa Supreme Court.
- Kansas: No changes
- Kentucky: No changes
- Louisiana: No changes
- Maine: The Maine Supreme Judicial Court has issued an order temporarily waiving the in-person CLE requirement. Maine attorneys may complete their entire CLE requirement via On-Demand courses until further notice. In addition, the Board of Overseers of the Bar for the State of Maine has extended the reporting deadline to May 1, 2020 and will not impose any late fees for the 2018-2019 reporting period.
- Minnesota: The Supreme Court of Minnesota has issued an order temporarily waiving the credit limitation for On-Demand courses. Minnesota attorneys in Category 3 who are due to report their requirement on August 31, 2020 (for the 2017-2020 reporting year), may complete all of their requirement as On-Demand courses.
- Mississippi: No changes
- Missouri: The Supreme Court of Missouri has issued an order extending the 2020 CLE deadline to September 30, 2020 (previously June 30). The reporting deadline is extended to October 31, 2020 but MO will not assess any late fees for courses completed and reported on or before December 31, 2020.
- Montana: The Supreme Court of Montana Commission of Continuing Legal Education will not assess any late fees as long as the required credits are completed and reported by May 15, 2020 (the usual deadline for completion is March 31). Montana attorneys can complete all of their credits online via a combination of live webcasts and on-demand programs.
- Nebraska: The Nebraska Supreme Court has issued an order temporarily removing the limit to distance learning courses. Attorneys can complete up to ten credits of distance learning for all CLE requirements due on or before January 20, 2021. This includes the 2020 requirement.
- Nevada: No changes
- New Hampshire: No changes
- New Jersey: The Supreme Court of New Jersey issued an order temporarily relaxing the 12-hour live classroom credit requirement. Until further notice from the courts, New Jersey attorneys may fulfill their entire CLE requirement through approved courses offered in alternative verifiable learning formats.
- New Mexico: No changes
- New York: The New York CLE Board has issued an order temporarily allowing Newly Admitted Attorneys to complete their live Skills requirement via live webcast, teleconference, and videoconference. This change is effective through June 30, 2020.
- North Carolina: No changes [Note: Although North Carolina previously had a live CLE requirement, as of January 1, 2020, that requirement was rescinded. North Carolina attorneys can complete their entire CLE requirement via On-Demand programming.]
- North Dakota: The North Dakota CLE Commission has suspended the credit limitation on Self-Study courses for North Dakota attorneys in Reporting Group 3 (attorneys who report in 2020). These attorneys may complete any portion of their requirement as On-Demand courses.
- Ohio: The Ohio Commission on Continuing Legal Education has waived the self-study cap for the 2018-2019 Late Compliance period and extended the deadline to June 29, 2020. Ohio attorneys who still need to finish their CLE requirements from the 2018-2019 compliance period can do so by watching On-Demand programming.
- Oklahoma: No changes
- Oregon: No changes
- Pennsylvania: The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania has issued an order extending the CLE deadline for Compliance Group 1 to August 31, 2020 (previously April 30). All other annual compliance deadlines remain the same.
- Rhode Island: No changes
- South Carolina: The Supreme Court of South Carolina has issued an order stating that all attorneys may complete their 14 hour requirement through online or telephonic programs for the 2019-2020 reporting year, which ends on April 15, 2020.
- Tennessee: The Tennessee Supreme Court has issued an order temporarily waiving the 8-hour distance learning CLE limitation for the 2019 requirement. Attorneys can now complete any portion of their 2019 CLE requirement via On-Demand programming until March 31.
- Texas: The State Bar of Texas has granted the following automatic extensions for their CLE requirement: (1) A 60 day extension for attorneys with March, April, or May 2020 compliance deadlines; (2) A 60 day extension for missed January or February 2020 compliance deadlines, to prevent the assessment of further fees; (3) A one month extension for attorneys subject to suspension for failure to comply with MCLE requirements in November or December 2019.
- Utah: The Supreme Court Board of Continuing Education issued an order suspending all requirements for the in-person CLE requirement until June 30, 2020. Utah attorneys with a June 30, 2020 deadline can now complete their required hours through webinars and other self-study courses.
- Vermont: The Vermont Supreme Court has issued an order temporarily waiving the 10-hour limitation on self-study CLE for the 2018-2020 reporting period. Vermont attorneys with an upcoming deadline on June 30, 2020, can complete their entire requirement through approved self-study courses.
- Virgin Islands: No changes
- Virginia: No changes
- Washington: No changes
- West Virginia: The West Virginia Mandatory CLE Commission issued an order suspending the live CLE requirement through June 30, 2020. West Virginia attorneys can now complete their full 24 hour requirement through video, audio, telephone seminars, computer-based training courses, or in-house instruction.
- Wisconsin: The Supreme Court of Wisconsin issued an order temporarily increasing the number of On-Demand CLE credits lawyers can take to satisfy their requirement through December 31, 2020. Attorneys with a December 31, 2020 deadline and those working to make up a deficit from their December 31, 2019 deadline may now take 30 hours of On-Demand programming, however, the legal ethics requirement needs be taken via live online programming or in-person courses.
- Wyoming: No changes
Written by Sarah Mills
Sarah graduated from Simon's Rock College in 2005 with a BA in Linguistics, then worked in events production for several years before she graduated from New York Law School in 2012. Before joining Lawline, she worked in litigation management as a legal auditor. She loves working as a program attorney as it combines her legal knowledge and production background. She has two kids, two cats, and loves public transit and rainy days.
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