NM New Mexico MCLE     An Agency of the Supreme Court
Minimum Continuing Legal Education
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Frequently Asked Questions

MCLE Requirements

  • What is the required number of MCLE hours?
    Each active member of the State Bar must complete twelve (12) hours of continuing legal education during each calendar year; ten (10) hours of general, and two (2) hours of ethics/professionalism. A minimum of eight (8) hours of credit must be obtained from formal "live" courses of instruction and a maximum of four (4) hours of credit maybe obtained by self-study. One credit hour is defined by sixty (60) minutes of instruction.

  • Are there any special requirements for newly admitted members?
    No. New members are required to complete MCLE hours the first full calendar year after they are admitted. All new attorneys receive MCLE information after their swearing-in.

  • What is the reporting year?
    The reporting year ends December 31 of each year. All courses taken by December 31 appear on the Annual Report and qualify for that year's requirements.

  • How can I earn credit for the two (2) hour ethics/professionalism requirement?
    The two (2) hour requirement can be met either by attending formal "live" CLE activities including a portion designated for ethics or professionalism, or by participating in some form of approved self-study devoted to ethics or professionalism. A variety of video and online programs are available that address these topics.

  • Can I carry forward credit hours?
    Yes. A maximum of twelve (12) hours earned in one reporting year may carryover to the next year. This maximum comprises ten (10) general, and two (2) ethics/professionalism credits. This provision does not apply to self-study credits.

  • What are aged/excess credits?
    Aged/Excess credits do not contribute to any compliance year. They can constitute additional credits earned above the twelve (12) that may carry forward or excess self-study, which does not carry forward.

  • Is an Annual Report required?
    Yes. No later than February 28th of each year, an Annual Report is mailed to each licensed active member. The Annual Report includes credits earned during the compliance year and any carryover credits from the previous compliance year. The report indicates whether the active member has completed credit requirements or whether the active member has a deficiency in credits.

  • Must an attorney report each time 'he or she' attends a CLE activity?
    No. All programs produced by accredited organizations and approved programs held within the state are reported for the attorney. The provider must report attorney attendance within 30 days of the date of the course, and submit the appropriate filing fees. The attorney must report all other courses no later than December 31 to ensure the courses will appear on the Annual Report. The 30 day reporting rule also applies to attorney credit submissions.

  • How does an attorney report or apply for credit for a course?
    If a course is not held in New Mexico but is approved by another mandatory state or given by an accredited provider, the attorney need only to report his or her attendance and pay the filing fees. The attorney can report by submitting a certificate of attendance and a MCLE 03, which includes the following:

    • Sponsor name
    • Course title
    • Course date
    • Course location
    • Number of credits (including specific ethics credit)
    • Course content
    • Time schedule
    • Course materials or brochure

    If a course is not given by an accredited provider and has not been approved for credit by New Mexico or another mandatory state, the attorney must apply for credit approval by submitting the appropriate filing fees and form MCLE 03, which includes the following:

    • Sponsor name
    • Course title
    • Course date
    • Course location
    • Number of credits (including specific ethics credit)
    • Course content
    • Time schedule
    • Course materials or brochure

    Note: To request approval for self-study, an attorney can submit the appropriate filing fees and form MCLE 04, which includes the following:

    • Sponsor name
    • Course title
    • Course date
    • Number of credits (including specific ethics credit)

    Attorneys are required to pay filing fees for all individual course approvals, including self-study credits. The MCLE Office requires attorneys to submit filing fees with approval requests, or all submitted paperwork is returned to the attorney. Checks should be made to "MCLE". The 30 day reporting rule also applies to attorney credit submissions.

  • Do out-of-state attorneys have to attend courses offered in New Mexico to receive credit?
    No. Courses approved in states where CLE is mandatory are usually approved in New Mexico. Courses taken in non-mandatory CLE states will qualify for credit provided the programs meet the standards as set out in the rules.

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