Inactive or Not Eligible Status

Who is subject to the MCLE Requirement?
Status Eligible to Practice MCLE Required? Transfer From Active is Transfer Back to Active
Active Yes Yes ----- -----
Not Eligible No Yes Involuntary "Reinstated" only after all reasons have ended
Inactive No No Voluntary "Reactivition" is voluntary

The only time a member is not subject to the MCLE education and reporting requirement is during the period of time that he/she is officially listed as "Inactive" on State Bar records. There is no "retired" status. Members who are not practicing law, and are otherwise eligible, may transfer to Inactive.  (Go to Attorney Search to check member status.)

A member who is Inactive for part, but not all, of a compliance period is required to complete a pro-rated education requirement, based on the number of months during the compliance period that he/she is not Inactive. (Go to Requirements to calculate pro-rated credit requirements.)

Credit may be claimed for education activities taken any time during the compliance period for which the education is required, even if a member is Inactive when completing the activity. (Note, however, that credit cannot be carried forward from one compliance period to another. Education may be completed after the end of a compliance period and carried back to a previous period, but education credit may never be carried forward from one compliance period to another.)

Tranferring between between Active and Inactive

Transfer from Active to Inactive

  • Inactive eligibility requirements are described on the Transfer to Inactive Status form found under Attorney Forms.
  • The duty to report compliance is tolled during the period of time that you are Inactive.
  • While Inactive, you are still a member of the State Bar and entitled to all of the benefits of membership, except you are not eligible to practice law in California or vote in the Board of Trustees' election.
  • Beginning the calendar year after a member's 70th birthday, the Inactive membership fee is waived.

Not Eligible

Members listed as Not Eligible cannot transfer to Inactive until all of the reasons for the Not Eligible listing have ended.

To reinstate after an attorney has been placed on administrative Inactive status (Not Eligible) for failure to comply with the MCLE requirement, the following must be submitted:

  • a complete MCLE Compliance Card (if still owed)
  • the $75 non-compliance fee (if still owed)
  • a $200 non-compliance reinstatement fee
  • documentation of compliance, including (as appropriate)
    • certificates of attendance
    • self-study log
    • proof of Exempt status, if the attorney is exempt

Reinstatement will be effective as of the date that all of the items above are received by the State Bar. If an attorney was placed on Not Eligible status for more than one reason (e.g., also suspended for nonpayment of Active membership fees), the attorney will not be eligible to practice law until the issues surrounding the Not Eligible status have been resolved.

Transfer from Inactive to Active

  • Complete and send in the Request to Transfer to Active Status form found under Attorney Forms and pay the difference between the Active and Inactive fee for the current year.
  • Transfer is effective the date the signed form and fee are received in Membership Records.
  • Rejoin your compliance group with the compliance period already in progress.
  • You may be required to show compliance with a past-due MCLE requirement within 60 days.
  • For the compliance period currently in progress, the MCLE requirement is prorated, based on the number of months during the compliance period that you are Active and not exempt.