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MCLE Self-Assessment Test

Annual bar fee statements available

The State Bar has launched a new online billing and payment application for 2017 fees. Paper billing statements will not be sent to attorneys. Instead, statements are available online through My State Bar Profile starting Dec. 7. Fee payments are due March 1, 2017.

Single payments fee statement
Individual attorneys will continue to be able to make payments online through My State Bar Profile. Attorneys should make sure that the email they have provided for communications from the State Bar is up to date.
Group payments
Law firms and agencies will be able to use the State Bar’s new Agency Billing system where they can calculate billing costs and make payments for a group of attorneys.   
Once an attorney’s fees are paid, a paper bar card will be conveniently available for download through My State Bar Profile. Plastic bar cards will still be made available, but only upon request and can also be ordered through My State Bar Profile.
The online billing system makes it easier than ever for individual attorneys and agencies to help make the justice system available to everyone. When paying your bill, please consider making a contribution in support of legal services for low income Californians. Your support is a lifeline that can help prevent homelessness, keep kids in school, protect elders from fraud and abuse and connect veterans to services, among other critical legal assistance.  
Last month the California Supreme Court authorized the State Bar to collect fees from active attorneys for 2017.

Meanwhile, as the bar moves toward electronic billing, all attorneys licensed in California should make sure their email address for official bar communications is up to date by logging onto My State Bar Profile.

The State Bar asked the court for interim authority to assess fees to fund the bar's disciplinary system after the Legislature adjourned without passing an annual fee bill. 

“We are grateful for the Supreme Court’s thoughtful and prompt consideration of our fee request in its interim assessment order and will continue moving forward in our public protection work,” Executive Director Elizabeth Parker said. “We are also deeply grateful to our dedicated employees who continue working diligently on behalf of all Californians, and are committed to making funding decisions that support both them and the State Bar’s mission.”

The bill for active attorneys is $412. That includes a base assessment of $297, which is 5.7 percent less than the amount approved by the Legislature in 2016. In addition, existing legislation allows the bar to bill active attorneys $25 for disciplinary activities, $40 for the Client Security Fund, $10 for the Lawyer Assistance Program and $40 for legal aid nonprofits.

Inactive members will be billed $155, an amount that includes $75 for the general fund, $40 for legal aid, $10 for the Client Security Fund, $25 for disciplinary activities and $5 for LAP.

Since the court’s fee assessment did not include funding for lobbying or elimination of bias activities, the State Bar Board of Trustees authorized the bar to collect voluntary donations of $10 for each purpose from all attorneys. Inactive lawyers may deduct up to $5 for legislative activity.

All lawyers will also have the opportunity via the fee statement to donate to the Justice Gap Fund, the California Bar Foundation, the Conference of California Bar Associations and the California Supreme Court Historical Society. In addition, attorneys may deduct up to $40 that would otherwise go to legal aid.

The due date for payment of fees will be March 1, one month later than usual. The due date for compliance with Minimum Continuing Education (MCLE) requirements is currently Feb. 1 but may be moved to March 1, pending Board of Trustees approval later this month.

Attorneys whose last names begin with N-Z are up next for compliance.

Editor's note: This story was updated to reflect that the fee statements became available to all attorneys Dec.7 and that all attorneys, not just active attorneys, will be asked whether they want to donate $10 each to elimination of bias and legislative activities.