Appellate Law (civil) / appellate law (criminal)
APPLY TO BECOME A CERTIFIED SPECIALIST
Certification is a two part process, and the parts can be completed in any order:
1. Register for the legal specialist examination on October 22, 2013 in Pasadena or South San Francisco. The application deadline is September 10, 2013 or until a particular test center's spaces are full. Late applications may be accepted until October 15, 2013 with the appropriate late fee if space is available. Note that you will choose one examination, either the appellate-civil examination or the appellate-criminal examination. Use the same application to register for either examination, marking your preference on the form.
2. Access a free Appellate Law Legal Specialist Examination Preparation Packet including key facts about examination logistics, the topics that can be tested on the examination, and all released essay questions. No multiple-choice questions are released. If you wish to take a preparation course, scroll below to see if the Department of Legal Specialization is aware of a course being offered in this area of law.
1. Started practicing after January 2012? You'll be eligible to register for the examination in 2015, but you can still work on the other requirements now. Use a Sample Post-Examination Application or the program rules listed below to track your experience, education and references. You can fulfill these requirements before and/or after you take the examination.
The following preparation courses are available:
Sat., June 15, 2013: “Becoming a Certified Appellate Specialist: Everything you Need to Know.” The Appellate Courts Section of the Los Angeles County Bar Association will be offering this very low cost breakfast program in conjunction with the Orange County Bar Association Appellate Law Section and the San Diego and Ventura County Bar Associations in downtown Los Angeles. The program will take place in downtown Los Angeles. An optional no-host lunch and further networking will follow the program. Please click on this text to link to the LACBA program page for further details and on-line registration. According to the providers, attendees will receive a $100 discount off of the Pincus Professional Education Appellate -Civil Exam Preparation course also referenced on this page.
Note: The Department of Legal Specialization is not affiliated with this preparation class or any commercial preparation class and derives no financial benefit from any educational provider. The Department provides this information solely for your convenience.
Rules and Standards
The Standards for Certification in Appellate Law (revised 5/16/08)
The standards must be read in conjunction with the Rules Governing the State Bar of California Program for Certifying Legal Specialists, which govern the program requirements.
Click here to access the application for testing accommodations for qualified individuals during the examination. Note that you must also still register for the examination using the form above and in accordance with the standard deadlines for registration.
CURRENT CERTIFIED SPECIALISTS
RECERTIFICATION: Applications are due every five years after your initial certification date. Please click here to download a Recertification Application.
SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS FOR THOSE WHO PASSED THE 2011 LEGAL SPECIALIST EXAMINATION
Passing the examination is the first step in the certification process. Post-Examination Applications were due on April 25, 2013. If you need an extension for good cause shown, such as completing five years' experience in your area of legal specialty, please draft a letter or an e-mail to the California Board of Legal Specialization at 180 Howard Street, San Francisco, CA 94105 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Questions? Contact the Department of Legal Specialization at email@example.com or at 415-538-2120. If speech- or hearing-impaired, call 711 for telecommunications relay services.