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.1601 General Requirements for Program Approval

(a) Approval. CLE programs may be approved upon the written application of a sponsor, including a registered sponsor, or of an active member on an individual program basis. An application for such CLE program approval shall meet the following requirements:

(1) If advance approval is requested by a sponsor, the application and supporting documentation, including one substantially complete set of the written materials to be distributed at the course or program, shall be submitted at least 50 days prior to the date on which the course or program is scheduled. If advance approval is requested by an active member, the application need not include a complete set of written materials.

(2) In all other cases, the application and supporting documentation shall be submitted by the sponsor not later than 50 days after the date the course or program was presented or prior to the end of the calendar year in which the course or program was presented, whichever is earlier. Active members requesting credit must submit the application and supporting documentation within 50 days after the date the course or program was presented or, if the 50 days have elapsed, as soon as practicable after receiving notice from the board that the course accreditation request was not submitted by the sponsor.

(3) The application shall be submitted on a form furnished by the board.

(4) The application shall contain all information requested on the form.

(5) The application shall be accompanied by a course outline or brochure that describes the content, identifies the teachers, lists the time devoted to each topic, and shows each date and location at which the program will be offered.

(6) The application shall include a detailed calculation of the total CLE hours and hours of professional responsibility.

(b) Program Quality and Materials. The application and materials provided shall reflect that the program to be offered meets the requirements of Rule .1519 of this subchapter. Sponsors, including registered sponsors, and active members seeking credit for an approved program shall furnish, upon request of the board, a copy of all materials presented and distributed at a CLE program. Written materials consisting merely of an outline without citation or explanatory notations generally will not be sufficient for approval. Any sponsor, including a registered sponsor, that expects to conduct a CLE program for which suitable written materials will not be made available to all attendees may obtain approval for that program only by application to the board at least 50 days in advance of the presentation showing why written materials are not suitable or readily available for such a program.

(c) Facilities. Sponsors must provide a facility conductive to learning with sufficient space for taking notes.

(d) Computer-Based CLE: Verification of Attendance. The sponsor of an on-line course must have a reliable method for recording and verifying attendance. The sponsor of a CD-ROM course must demonstrate that there is a reliable method for the user or the sponsor to record and verify participation in the course. A participant may periodically log on and off of a computer-based CLE course provided the total time spent participating in the course is equal to or exceeds the credit hours assigned to the program. A copy of the record of attendance must be forwarded to the board within 30 days after a member completes his or her participation in the course.

(e) Records. Sponsors, including registered sponsors, shall within 30 days after the program is concluded

(1) furnish to the board a list of the names of all North Carolina attendees together with their North Carolina State Bar membership numbers; the list shall be in alphabetical order and in a format prescribed by the board;

(2) remit to the board the appropriate sponsor fee; and, if payment is not received by the board within 30 days after the course is concluded, interest at the legal rate shall be incurred; provided, however, the board may waive such interest upon a showing of good cause by a sponsor; and

(3) furnish to the board a complete set of all written materials distributed to attendees at the course or program.

(f) Announcement. Sponsors that have advanced approval for programs may include in their brochures or other program descriptions the information contained in the following illustration:

This [course, seminar,or program] has been approved by the Board of Continuing Legal Education of the North Carolina State Bar for continuing legal education credit in the amount of ____ hours, of which ____ hours will also apply in the area of professional responsibility. 

(g) Notice. Sponsors not having advanced approval shall make no representation concerning the approval of the course for CLE credit by the board. The board will mail a notice of its decision on CLE activity approval requests within (45) days of their receipt when the request for approval is submitted before the program and within (45) days when the request is submitted after the program. Approval thereof will be deemed if the notice is not timely mailed. This automatic approval will not operate if the sponsor contributes to the delay by failing to provide the complete information requested by the board or if the board timely notifies the sponsor that the matter has been tabled and the reason therefor.

History Note: Authority - Order of the North Carolina Supreme Court, October 7, 1987, 318 N.C. 711.

Readopted Effective December 8, 1994

Amendments Approved by the Supreme Court: October 1, 2003; March 3, 2005; March 6, 2008; October 7, 2010; April 5, 2018

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