INSTRUCTIONS FOR PETITIONERS FOR INACTIVE STATUS
Revised January 2016
The petition must be reviewed by the Administrative Committee and approved by the State Bar
Council. The committee and the council meet quarterly in January, April, July, and October of each
year. The dates of the meetings are posted on the NC State Bar’s website: www.ncbar.gov.
Instructions for Completing and Filing Petition
1. Print or type the petition. Complete, date, and sign the petition to acknowledge that you have
read and understand the questions or statements on the petition.
2. The mandatory membership and CLE fees, for the year in which you file the petition, must be
current. If you have not paid the current year’s membership fees, contact the Membership
Department at (919) 828-4620, for the balance owed to the State Bar. For questions concerning
your CLE fees, contact the CLE department at (919) 733-0123.
3. The petition must be postmarked on or before December 31
to avoid incurring the
mandatory membership fees for the following year.
4. Mail the petition and any supporting documentation to:
NC State Bar
PO Box 26088
Raleigh, NC 27611
Petitions received 30 days prior to the meeting of the State Bar Council will receive a
confirmation notice (via mail or e-mail). Petitions submitted later than 30 days prior to the
meeting may be delayed in processing until the next quarterly State Bar meeting. Keep a copy
of your petition for your records. Please contact the Membership Department at (919)
828-4620 if you do not receive a confirmation notice.
5. If your request for inactive status is granted by the State Bar Council, an inactive order will be
mailed to the address you provide on the petition within a couple of weeks after the meeting.
Effect of Inactive Status:
If your membership status is inactive, you cannot practice North Carolina law, including giving
advice regarding North Carolina law, or serving as a judge in any tribunal that requires an active
North Carolina law license. You are also prohibited from serving in an “of counsel” capacity and
from holding yourself out as a “lawyer”, “attorney”, “attorney at law” or any other designation that
implies that you are an active attorney who can provide legal services in North Carolina.
However, if you want to assist with the representation of Legal Aid clients (or other indigent
persons served by a nonprofit corporation), you may petition for emeritus pro bono status:
: To retain your certification, you must remain substantially involved in your
specialty practice area. Substantial involvement is defined differently for each specialty but,
generally, it requires that the specialist actively practice the specialty for not less than 25% of a full
time practice every calendar year. Before petitioning for inactive status, check the recertification
standards for your specialty on the specialization website: www.nclawspecialist.gov
Pursuant to 27 N.C.A.C. Chapter 1D, Rule .0902, depending on the length of your inactive
status, you may be subject to additional CLE requirements and, in some instances, passage of
the Bar exam prior to reinstatement.