PLS Recertification

Download the recertification guidelinesDownload the recertification affidavit/application

What is recertification?
Recertification literally is the act of having one’s certification renewed.  NALS considers recertification to be continuing one’s education in the legal field by obtaining continuing legal education credit hours.

There are three categories of recertification for PLSs.  The first category is mandatory recertification, which is required for PLS certification to remain current according to educational standards for those earning certification as of March 1994 or thereafter.  The second category is voluntary recertification, which is recommended and encouraged for those achieving PLS certification prior to March 1994.  PLSs who voluntarily recertify must meet the same requirements and established criteria as for mandatory recertification.  The third category is Certified PLS Emeritus, which applies to PLSs who are retired or disabled.

Am I required to recertify?
Recertification is required for those PLSs falling under mandatory recertification (those passing the exam after 1993). Recertification is encouraged for those PLSs falling under voluntary recertification.

Why should I become recertified?
Because of the ever-changing profession to which we belong, recertification is desirable in order to maintain the integrity of the PLS certification.  Laws, rules, and regulations are continuously changing, and recertification ensures that PLSs remain up-to-date with current legal practices.

What do I need to become recertified?
You need to have a total of 75 hours of CLE credits in order to recertify.  You can follow these three easy steps to recertify:

  1. Earn Recertification Points: You can participate in educational activities to earn points toward recertification.  See Recertification Modules for details about which educational activities earn points.  Appropriate educational topics include:  law office procedures, technology, ethics and judgment, grammar, and law-related topics.  Be sure to obtain certificates of completion or other documentation confirming participation in educational activities.  You’ll need to attach additional information to documentation as needed.
  2. Get Organized: Maintain a file with all of your CLE certificates or other documentation.  A chart giving the date of the event, the program sponsor, the hours attended, the points earned, and the session topic may be utilized to keep track of credits.  (See recertification form for an example.)  Since the Resource Center does not send reminders, be sure to calendar the date when your five-year validity period is due to expire.
  3. Documentation to Send to NALS: At any time prior to the expiration of your current validity period, submit the following to the Resource Center:
    1. PLS Recertification Affidavit/Application (available in PDF format)
    2. PLS Recertification Form (available in PDF format)
    3. Copies of original certificates or documentation pertaining to education credits
    4. A check for $75 made payable to NALS

What do I get when I recertify?
Upon receipt by the Resource Center of your completed PLS Recertification Form, Affidavit/Application, $75 fee, and appropriate copies of your education certificates or documentation, you will receive a recertification certificate.

Who else is notified of my recertification?
Notification regarding individual recertification will be provided only to NALS publication editors for purposes of association-wide publicity.

What happens if I don’t recertify?
The PLS certification will expire at the end of the five-year validity period.  If asked, the NALS Certification Manager will state that the certification validity has expired.

Who can I contact if I still have questions?
The Certification and Education Manager at the NALS Resource Center by telephone at (918) 582-5188, e-mail at cert-edu@nals.org, or fax at (918) 582-5907.

The Resource Center will accept applications prior to the expiration of the fifth year following certification.  Acceptance of early recertification submissions will not affect the recertification period.  Points may not be accrued during the current validity period for the next period.  Credits earned during that period may not be included in the next recertification application.
Be sure to keep your originals as the Resource Center discards submitted documentation upon approval of the recertification application.