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Legal Specialists

Legal Specialization

Register for the Legal Specialist Examination on Oct. 27, 2015

Register for the legal specialist examination by Sept. 1, 2015 for best pricing.  Late registration closes Oct. 1, 2015. 

Go to Certification above to find full details of the examination.

Apply for Testing Accommodations

Becoming a Board Certified Specialist

  • Why certify? Learn more about why to certify by watching this short video.
  • Read about one attorney's path to becoming a board certified legal specialist.
  • Starting the Application Process?

    Begin by marking your calendar for the legal specialist examination on October 27, 2015, and work on the other requirements in the meantime.  The rules and the post-examination application will help you to begin documenting the education and experience needed to complete your candidate packet.  Look to the left to find your area of specialty.

    The examination will take place at the Pasadena Convention Center and the Oakland Convention Center. The application, as well as applications for testing accommodations will be posted in February 2015. Information about preparation courses that is passed on to the Department will be shared on the individual legal specialty pages when the application is posted, or as that information is received.

    Passed the 2013 examination?

    Congratulations! You are ready to file the post-examination application. Plan to file your application or request for extension by April 25, 2015. , which is eighteen months after the examination date.  The maximum extension that can be considered with good cause shown is through January 31, 2017.

    Already a certified specialist?

    It's time to enjoy the many benefits of being a certified specialist:  

    For educational providers

    Apply to offer Legal Specialization credits and MCLE.

    Search for a list of approved educational providers in your area of certified specialty.

    News you can use 

    Contact Us

    Contact us at or 415-538-2120.

    Contact Us

    Department of Legal Specialization
    Office of Admissions

    State Bar of California
    180 Howard St.
    San Francisco, CA 94105
    Fax: 415-538-2180

    For consumers

    Find certified legal specialists in your county or try the Advanced Search tool to locate attorneys who speak specific languages or practice in certain cities.

    Board-certified legal specialists have:

    • demonstrated their competence
    • received specialized education
    • shown commitment in one of 11 areas of law practice administered through the State Bar of California or 11 additional areas through our certifying partners

    Learn more in this short video.