CLE Frequently Asked Questions

MCLE Requirements

What are my options for the 2018-2020 Reporting Period to avoid a late fee if I’m in the A – M reporting group?

You have three options to avoid a late fee for the 2018-2020 Reporting Period:

  • Complete Credits by June 30, 2020 and Report Complied by July 31, 2020
     If you do not report your compliance by July 31, 2020, there is a $250.00 late fee.
    How do I report my compliance for the 2018-2020 Reporting Period no later than July 31, 2020?
  •  Need A Free Extension to Earn Credits? Report NOT YET COMPLIED by July 31, 2020
    Due to the pandemic, you have another option this year. If you have not completed your 30-hour requirement by June 30, 2020, you will report "NOT YET COMPLIED" to the Board by July 31, 2020. With your report of NOT YET COMPLIED by July 31, 2020, you will have until September 30, 2020, to complete your required MCLE credits. September 30, 2020 is also your deadline to report complied to the Board online with no late fee. How do I report “Not Yet Complied” to secure a no-cost, three-month extension to complete my credits for the 2018-2020 Reporting Period?
  • Plan to Change your Active License Status to Inactive or Retired Status, Thereby Securing an MCLE Exemption? June 30, 2020 Is Your Deadline to Make that Change 
    You are not currently exempt based on inactive or retired status. If your status is inactive or retired with the ARDC on June 30, 2020, you will have a full exemption. Find out how to change your license status with the ARDC. If you qualify for an exemption based on inactive or retired status, the MCLE Board will record that exemption for you shortly after June 30, 2020. Changing your status after June 30, 2020, will not secure an exemption for the 2018-2020 Reporting Period, so please act now.

What are the requirements and reporting deadlines?

First Letter of Last Name Reporting Period
A through M Two-Year Period Beginning July 1 of Even Numbered Years
30 Hours required, including 6 hours PMCLE credit
N through Z Two-Year Period Beginning July 1 of Odd Numbered Years
30 hours required, including 6 hours PMCLE credit

Up to 10 MCLE credits earned prior to the beginning of your reporting period can be carried into your two-year reporting period, including professional responsibility credits. Newly Admitted Attorneys may carry over 15 hours and should refer to the MCLE Board website ( for details regarding carrying over MCLE credit. For more detailed information, please visit the Supreme Court of Illinois Minimum Continuing Legal Education (MCLE) Board website.

What are the requirements and reporting deadlines for newly-admitted attorneys?

Newly admitted attorneys have special requirements for their first year of admittance. The choices include taking a Basic Skills course, participating in an approved mentoring program, or selecting other MCLE courses of interest. You can find out more about these requirements and MCLE compliance and reporting deadlines at our MCLE Requirements for New Lawyers page.

What are the PMCLE requirements?

Professional Responsibility MCLE (PMCLE) must be in the area of professionalism, civility, legal ethics, diversity and inclusion, or mental health and substance abuse. Beginning with the N-Z group reporting period ending June 30, 2019, the 6 hours of PMCLE must include either:

  • At least one hour in Diversity and Inclusion and
  • At least one hour in Mental Health/Substance Abuse;


  • Completion of a yearlong Lawyer-to-Lawyer mentoring program

Where do I get my certificate of attendance?

You may find certificates of attendance for ISBA courses you registered for after July 1, 2018 in the My Certificates tab on the Online CLE Account page.

Can I earn credit for the same program multiple times?

You may not claim credit for attending/completing the same course twice within a 12 month period.

Why do I have to do this?

In 2005 the Supreme Court of Illinois adopted MCLE requirements with Supreme Court Rules 790-798. The Court created the MCLE Board of the Supreme Court of Illinois to administer the MCLE program and the Commission on Professionalism to address issues of professionalism.

As a private, nonprofit voluntary bar association, the ISBA has no role in the administration or enforcement of the Illinois Supreme Court Rule requiring MCLE.

If you have any questions regarding the MCLE rules, please contact the Illinois MCLE Board or check out the MCLE Board's Q&A webpage.

Free On-Demand CLE

Is Free On-Demand CLE really free?

Yes! These hours will be covered by your annual dues and there are no hidden fees.

How much Free On-Demand CLE do I get?

Eligible members can take up to 15 hours of On-Demand MCLE, including 6 hours PMCLE, each bar year. The ISBA bar year runs from July 1 to June 30.

Who is eligible for Free On-Demand CLE?

ISBA members eligible to receive this benefit include dues levels 2-20 (regular dues-paying members), new admittees, law students, lifetime, privileged, honorary, military, dues-waived, and dues-reduction categories. This benefit will not be available to retired or inactive member categories, as well as those holding a "Non-Illinois Resident" ISBA membership (which correlates with membership type, rather than physical location). Non-Illinois residents may join ISBA with a regular dues level membership to participate in the Free Online CLE program.

I'm a newly-admitted attorney. Am I included?

Yes, newly admitted attorneys can complete their Supreme Court mandated (S. Ct. Rule 793) 15-hour accredited MCLE requirement for newly admitted attorneys via ISBA's Online CLE Store. Simply complete the 6-hour accredited Basic Skills online program in addition to 9 hours of other programs of your choosing. Learn more about ISBA's complimentary new admittee membership and ISBA's CLE for new lawyers.

I'm not an ISBA member. How can I participate?

Free CLE is a member benefit available to ISBA members only. If you are interested in becoming an ISBA member, complete the application found on our Join page. Membership costs between $75-$360 (depending on how many years you've been in practice) and includes the 15 hours of Free On-Demand CLE per bar year, free online legal research (Fastcase), daily case digests, and many other benefits. To see a complete list of benefits, visit our Member Benefits page.

Registration and General Information

How do I register?

Register online for all ISBA Law Ed programs. You can find live webcasts, live webinars, and live on site programs on our Upcoming CLE page. Visit our On-Demand page for hundreds of hours of programs that you can watch or listen to at any time. You will need to be logged in to register.

How do I cancel my registration or get a refund?

To cancel your registration for live events, go to the live event page, log in, and click on "Cancel Registration"  or send your cancellation notification to
Live Webcasts/Webinars - A full refund is available up to the start of the program.
Live On-site Programs: A refund is available up to 24 hours prior to a live on-site program, less a $25 administrative fee, if you provide notice of your cancellation as indicated above. (*Destination and Master Series programs may have different cancellation and refund terms. Please contact the ISBA CLE Department for details.)

What does the ISBA do to accommodate special needs?

The ISBA Chicago Regional Office is wheelchair-accessible, and we encourage the visually-impaired to bring  an additional individual at no additional charge to take notes or assist. (Please be sure to register the assistant, as space is sometimes limited.) Private lactation rooms are available at the ISBA Chicago Regional Office for nursing mothers. Other sites are selected for maximum accessibility. Attorneys with special needs, such as those who are physically-challenged or nursing mothers, can contact the CLE Registration Coordinator a week prior to the program to determine how ISBA can facilitate their attendance at off-site venues.

Does the ISBA offer any discounts?

Advance Registration

Many live on-site programs cost less if you register at least three working days prior to the program presentation.

Legal Service Attorneys

Legal Service Attorney members may attend designated live on-site programs for only $25 (there is an additional charge if lunch is served), if they work full-time or part-time (with no other income through the practice of law) for a not-for-profit, non-governmental organization whose mission is to provide quality civil legal assistance to low-income persons. Documentation required 10 days prior. No other discounts apply. To download the required form and read the LSA CLE Policy, please visit our Legal Services Attorneys page.

Members of Presenting or Co-sponsoring Sections

If you are a member of the section presenting or co-sponsoring the program, you receive a $10 discount off the fee for most live on-site programs.

New Attorneys

ISBA Member Attorneys in their first five years of bar admittance pay only $25 for most live, on-site programs. There is an additional charge if lunch is served. No other discounts apply.

ISBA Law Student Members

Law student members may attend live Law Ed CLE programs at no charge, space permitting; attendance at Masters Series programs is at full price. Law Students are eligible for a free electronic ISBA membership. Join now.


These programs feature highly-regarded expert presenters and focus on information and techniques for the more experienced attorneys - or for attorneys seeking to take their abilities to the next level. Regular discounts, including for section membership, may not apply.