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What is a Continuing Legal Education (CLE) Unit?
The Alabama Bar Commission requires that each attorney admitted to the Alabama State Bar (as defined in § 40-12-49, Code of Alabama, 1975) obtain CLE credits yearly. These credits are created in order for attorneys to learn updates of changes in any and all areas of the law.
How many CLE hours must I have each year?
The Commission on Mandatory CLEs requires attorneys to obtain, at a minimum, 12 hours of CLEs. One of those hours must be a unit on Ethics or Professional Development.
What if I cannot attend a conference?
Under the CLE code, attorneys may achieve up to, but no more than, six hours of CLEs through online CLE programs.
When must I complete my CLE hours?
No later than midnight on December 31st.
Can I get CLE credits from non-CLE programs?
Yes. If a presentation, such as a tax seminar, crosses academic lines, the Commission may consider it for approval. However, if an academic seminar is not law-related, such as a presentation on creative writing, it will not be considered for approval. Approval for an academic program hinges on how much it relates to the law.
Are there exemptions from the CLE requirement?
Yes, but they are limited in scope. Attorneys who have reached the age of 65 do not have to pursue CLEs. Furthermore, attorneys who have reached the age of 62 and are receiving Social Security retirement benefits are additionally exempt from CLE requirements.
Newly admitted attorneys to the Bar are exempt from the CLE requirement in the year that they are admitted. However, they must attend a six-hour course in Professionalism during their first year.
There are military and public office exemptions due to the fact that these individuals are not permitted to practice private law because their occupation precludes them from being able to do so. Those attorneys with permanent physical disabilities that would prevent them from attendance at a CLE program may also qualify for exemptions from CLE requirements.
Can CLE credits be earned by instructing a CLE class?
Yes, six credit hours will be given for each hour of the presentation. Repeat presentations still qualify, but the amount of hours awarded will be half of the original presentation.
Do I need to bring my Bar Identification number?
Yes, so that Auburn can document your attendance and submit it to the Commission in order for you to get your earned CLE hours.
What are the costs associated with AU's CLE classes?
A three-hour course will be set at $125.00, and a six-hour course will be set at $250.00
What areas of the State will Auburn University be primarily sponsoring CLE conferences and meetings?
East, southeast, and central Alabama with plans to hold an annual conference in Orange Beach or around the Mobile area.
How often will presentations be held?
As OPCE continues to build the program, there will be more offerings. At first, interested parties can expect that AU will sponsor presentations monthly.
Are CLE presentations going to be available online?
At the moment, no. Only in-person seminars will be held. However, it is anticipated that CLE presentations will be available online within the next year.
Last Updated: September 13, 2012