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Frequently Asked Questions - Annual Assessment - New Jersey Attorneys (Rule 1:28-2)

  1. Am I exempt from payment because I practice out-of-state?
  2. Am I exempt from payment by virtue of being exempt from pro bono counsel assignment?
  3. Am I exempt from payment by virtue of being prohibited from private practice?
  4. Does the "military" exemption include other government service, e.g., foreign service?
  5. What happens if I neither pay the required fee nor receive either of the exemptions from payment (retired or military)?
  6. Must I continue to respond to the annual billing even though I've been granted one of theexemptions from payment (retired or military)?
  7. How do I activate my license if I no longer qualify for the exemption from payment previously granted?
  8. How do I officially change my name?
  9. How do I update my mailing address?
  10. How do I resign from the Bar?

Am I exempt from payment because I practice out-of-state?

No. You cannot claim an exemption from payment solely by virtue of being out-of-state.

Am I exempt from payment by virtue of being exempt from pro bono counsel assignment?

No. Exemptions from payment are unrelated to exemptions from pro bono counsel assignment.

Am I exempt from payment by virtue of being prohibited from private practice?

No. Exemptions from payment are narrowly defined; all conditions must be met. Lawyers who cannot claim the retired exemption from payment include, but are not limited to, judges, prosecutors, public defenders, and other government lawyers.

Does the "military" exemption include other government service, e.g., foreign service?

No. The exemption is expressly limited to "full-time active duty with the Armed Forces, AmeriCorps, or Peace Corps."

What happens if I neither pay the required fee nor receive either of the exemptions from payment (retired or military)?

Your name will be entered on a Supreme Court Order declaring you ineligible to practice law in New Jersey. Although this is not a disciplinary action akin to suspension or disbarment, ineligible attorneys are considered not in good standing in New Jersey and may neither practice nor be admitted pro hac vice. By Court Rules 1:28-2 and 1:20-1(d), you would be required to pay a $50 fee to be removed from one year's ineligible list or a $100 fee for removal from two or more years' ineligible lists, in addition to the regular and late fees required for each year.

Must I continue to respond to the annual billing even though I've been granted one of the exemptions from payment (retired or military)?

Yes. All attorneys are required to file an annual registration, even those who have been granted an exemption from payment.  This keeps the Court informed about your current status and provides attorneys an opportunity to 1) make changes and/or remit payment if they no longer qualify for the exemption, 2) respond to other portions of the registration, and 3) update their mailing or email addresses.   Please access the Online Registration and Payment Center to respond.

You have an ongoing duty to immediately inform the Fund if you no longer qualify for the exemption previously granted (such as no longer in military or if you come out of retired status), and to keep your address current with the Fund.  You can access the Online Registration and Payment Center to activate your license or to update your mailing or email address.

How do I activate my license if I no longer qualify for the exemption from payment previously granted?

Go to the Online Registration and Payment Center to update your registration information and pay the current year's fee.  

How do I officially change my name?

Attorneys who change their names after admission to practice must file a name change affidavit with the Supreme Court through its Board of Bar Examiners.

How do I update my mailing address?

In accordance with Rule 1:28-2, you must keep your mailing address current with the Fund during the year. Please note that your mailing address is not confidential. Please access the Online Registration and Payment Center to update your address.

How do I resign from the Bar?

Please see the Office of Attorney Ethics FAQ.

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