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Orzeske: How to stay in good standing with your CLE requirements

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Indiana Lawyer Focus

By Julia Orzeske, John D. Ulmer and Shontrai Irving

Indiana’s attorneys are subject to a mandatory continuing legal education requirement. Each attorney, in order to stay active and in good standing on the Indiana Roll of Attorneys, must complete a minimum of six hours of CLE per calendar year and a minimum of 36 hours by Dec. 31 of the third year of repeating three-year education periods. Newly admitted attorneys must complete six hours of an Applied Professionalism Course that counts toward both their annual and three-year requirement. These newly admitted attorneys who successfully complete a three-year education period are then considered veteran attorneys: the applied professionalism requirement is replaced by a three-hour ethics requirement which must be completed at any time in repeating three-year education periods.

Every year, before Sept. 1, attorneys are sent a transcript showing their continuing legal education activities for the current year and three-year education period. Once this is received, the attorneys are responsible for correcting any errors and completing any unfulfilled requirements before Dec. 31 of the current year.

The transcript is sent to the attorneys at the address designated by the attorney on the Roll of Attorneys’ portal. It is wise to check information early in the summer (now) because the annual attorney registration fee process will soon begin. If an attorney’s contact information is not kept current, there is a possibility the registration fee information will be sent to the wrong email address for the attorney and that the CLE transcript will be sent to the wrong home or work address. It is important to note that it is solely the attorney’s responsibility to enter, verify and monitor this contact information, and “a failure to do so is a waiver of notice involving licenses as attorneys and/or disciplinary matters.” Admission and Discipline Rule 2, Sec. (a). Please take the time now to review your contact information on the Roll of Attorneys portal at https://courtapps.in.gov/rollofattorneys.

The Commission for Continuing Legal Education has a searchable database on www.in.gov/judiciary/cle/ to help attorneys choose courses that have already been approved by the commission. If there is a course an attorney is interested in attending that is not listed, the attorney should complete an application for accreditation to the commission to receive an approval decision before spending substantial time and resources on the course. The commission currently has about a 30-day turn around on course applications.

There are also FAQs on the website. The commission deals with questions that arise in its areas of responsibility addressed by Admission and Discipline Rule 28 (Continuing Judicial Education), Admission and Discipline Rule 29 (Continuing Legal Education), Admission and Discipline Rule 30 (Attorney Specialization) and the Alternative Dispute Resolution Rules (Mediation training and registry). Please contact the commission with any questions at 317-232-1943 or cle@courts.in.gov.•

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Julia Orzeske has been executive director of the Commission for Continuing Legal Education since 1994. John D. Ulmer is chair of the commission and of counsel with Yoder Ainlay Ulmer & Buckingham LLP in Goshen. Shontrai Irving is a commission member and an attorney with State Farm. The opinions expressed are those of the authors.

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  1. So that none are misinformed by my posting wihtout a non de plume here, please allow me to state that I am NOT an Indiana licensed attorney, although I am an Indiana resident approved to practice law and represent clients in Indiana's fed court of Nth Dist and before the 7th circuit. I remain licensed in KS, since 1996, no discipline. This must be clarified since the IN court records will reveal that I did sit for and pass the Indiana bar last February. Yet be not confused by the fact that I was so allowed to be tested .... I am not, to be clear in the service of my duty to be absolutely candid about this, I AM NOT a member of the Indiana bar, and might never be so licensed given my unrepented from errors of thought documented in this opinion, at fn2, which likely supports Mr Smith's initial post in this thread: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1592921.html

  2. When I served the State of Kansas as Deputy AG over Consumer Protection & Antitrust for four years, supervising 20 special agents and assistant attorneys general (back before the IBLE denied me the right to practice law in Indiana for not having the right stuff and pretty much crushed my legal career) we had a saying around the office: Resist the lure of the ring!!! It was a take off on Tolkiem, the idea that absolute power (I signed investigative subpoenas as a judge would in many other contexts, no need to show probable cause)could corrupt absolutely. We feared that we would overreach constitutional limits if not reminded, over and over, to be mindful to not do so. Our approach in so challenging one another was Madisonian, as the following quotes from the Father of our Constitution reveal: The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse. We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties. I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power. All men having power ought to be mistrusted. -- James Madison, Federalist Papers and other sources: http://www.constitution.org/jm/jm_quotes.htm RESIST THE LURE OF THE RING ALL YE WITH POLITICAL OR JUDICIAL POWER!

  3. My dear Mr Smith, I respect your opinions and much enjoy your posts here. We do differ on our view of the benefits and viability of the American Experiment in Ordered Liberty. While I do agree that it could be better, and that your points in criticism are well taken, Utopia does indeed mean nowhere. I think Madison, Jefferson, Adams and company got it about as good as it gets in a fallen post-Enlightenment social order. That said, a constitution only protects the citizens if it is followed. We currently have a bevy of public officials and judicial agents who believe that their subjectivism, their personal ideology, their elitist fears and concerns and cause celebs trump the constitutions of our forefathers. This is most troubling. More to follow in the next post on that subject.

  4. Yep I am not Bryan Brown. Bryan you appear to be a bigger believer in the Constitution than I am. Were I still a big believer then I might be using my real name like you. Personally, I am no longer a fan of secularism. I favor the confessional state. In religious mattes, it seems to me that social diversity is chaos and conflict, while uniformity is order and peace.... secularism has been imposed by America on other nations now by force and that has not exactly worked out very well.... I think the American historical experiment with disestablishmentarianism is withering on the vine before our eyes..... Since I do not know if that is OK for an officially licensed lawyer to say, I keep the nom de plume.

  5. I am compelled to announce that I am not posting under any Smith monikers here. That said, the post below does have a certain ring to it that sounds familiar to me: http://www.catholicnewworld.com/cnwonline/2014/0907/cardinal.aspx

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