Proposed Rule Amendments

The Process and Your Comments

Proposed amendments to the Rules of the North Carolina State Bar are published for comment during the quarter after the council of the North Carolina State Bar approves their publication. The proposed amendments are published in the North Carolina State Bar's Journal and on this website. After publication for comment, the proposed rule amendments are considered for adoption by the council at its next quarterly meeting. If adopted, the rule amendments are submitted to the North Carolina Supreme Court for approval. Amendments become effective upon approval by the court. Unless otherwise noted, proposed additions to rules appear in in bold and underlined print, deletions are interlined. Proposed amendments to the Rules of Professional Conduct appear at the end of the page.

The State Bar welcomes your comments regarding proposed amendments to the rules. Please send a written response to L. Thomas Lunsford II, The North Carolina State Bar, PO Box 25908, Raleigh, NC 27611, or comments@ncbar.gov, by March 31, 2014.

Below are the rule amendments from the most recent meeting of the State Bar Council in January 2014.

 

Proposed Amendments to the Rules of Professional Conduct
The State Bar Study Committee on Ethics 20/20 has completed its review of the Ethics 20/20 amendments to the ABA Model Rules. The committee recommends amendments to 13 of the NC Rules of Professional Conduct. Click here to read the executive summary and the proposed amendments.


Proposed Amendment to the Rules Governing the Administration of the CLE Program

27 N.C.A.C. 1D, Section .1500, Rules Governing the Administration of the Continuing Legal Education Program


The proposed amendment will require a lawyer to be a nonresident for at least six consecutive months in a given year to qualify for the nonresident exemption from mandatory CLE.


.1517 Exemptions


(a) Notification of Board.


...


(d) Nonresidents. Any active member residing outside of North Carolina who does not practice in North Carolina for at least six (6) consecutive months and does not represent North Carolina clients on matters governed by North Carolina law shall be exempt from the requirements of these rules.


(e) Law Teachers.


...


Proposed Amendments to Certification Standards for the Immigration Law Specialty

27 NCAC 1D, Section .2600, Certification Standards for the Immigration Law Specialty


The proposed amendments clarify that CLE courses on topics related to immigration law may be used to satisfy the CLE requirements for certification and recertification, and require four peer references to be from lawyers or judges who have substantial experience in immigration law.


.2605 Standards for Certification as a Specialist in Immigration Law


Each applicant for certification as a specialist in immigration law shall meet the minimum standards set forth in Rule .1720 of this subchapter. In addition, each applicant shall meet the following standards for certification in immigration law:


(a) Licensure and Practice ...


(b) ...


(c) Continuing Legal Education - An applicant must earn no less than 48 hours of accredited continuing legal education (CLE) credits in topics relating to immigration law during the four years preceding application. At least 20 of the 48 CLE credit hours must be earned during the first and second year preceding application and at least 20 of the CLE hours must be earned during the third and fourth years preceding application. Of the 48 hours, at least 42 must be in immigration law; the balance may be in the related areas of federal administrative procedure, trial advocacy, evidence, taxation, family law, employment law, and criminal law and procedure.


(d) Peer Review - An applicant must make a satisfactory showing of qualification through peer review. An applicant must provide the names of ten lawyers or judges who are familiar with the competence and qualification of the applicant in the specialty field….All references must be licensed and in good standing to practice in North Carolina. At least two four of the completed peer reference forms received by the board must be from lawyers or judges who have substantial practice or judicial experience in immigration law….


(e) ...


.2606 Standards for Continued Certification as a Specialist


The period of certification is five years... [E]ach applicant for continued certification as a specialist shall comply with the specific requirements set forth below in addition to any general standards required by the board of all applicants for continued certification.


(a) Substantial Involvement ...


(b) Continuing Legal Education - The specialist must have earned no less than 60 hours of accredited continuing legal education credits in topics relating to immigration law as accredited by the board. At least 30 of the 60 CLE credit hours must be earned during the first three years after certification or recertification, as applicable. Of the 60 hours, at least 52 must be in immigration law; the balance may be in the related areas of federal administrative procedure, trial advocacy, evidence, taxation, family law, employment law, and criminal law and procedure.


(c) Peer Review ...

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