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Please review the general requirements for certification and continued certification, as well as the standards for Bankruptcy Law.



Licensed and in good standing to practice law in North Carolina as of the date of application.


During the five years preceding application:

Average of at least 500 hours a year.

Minimum of 400 hours for any one year.

Practice equivalents may be accepted for the following:

  1. service as a judge of any bankruptcy court, service as a clerk of any bankruptcy court, or service as a standing trustee;
  2. corporate or government service, including military service, after admission to the bar of any state, the District of Columbia, or any U.S. territorial possession, but only if the bankruptcy work done was legal advice or representation of the corporation, governmental unit, or individuals connected therewith;
  3. service as a deputy or assistant clerk of any bankruptcy court, as a research assistant to a bankruptcy judge, or as a law professor teaching bankruptcy and/or debtor-creditor related courses may be substituted for one year of experience to meet the five-year requirement.


During the three years preceding application:

At least 36 hours of accredited CLE in bankruptcy law.

No less than 6 credits in any one year.


Must provide the names of ten lawyers or judges who are familiar with the competence and qualification of the applicant in bankruptcy law.

All references must be licensed and in good standing to practice law.

A reference may not be related by blood or marriage to the applicant nor may the reference be a colleague at the applicant’s place of employment at the time of the application.

A reference may not be a judge of any bankruptcy court.


Exam written and graded by the American Board of Certification (ABC).

Six hours long (two three-hour sessions).

Allows NC specialists to obtain "dual" certifications by passing only the ABC exam.

If seeking certification in both business and consumer, an additional three-hour exam portion will be scheduled.

Exam administered at the NC State Bar building.