On October 18, 2023, the North Carolina Supreme Court amended the Board of Law Examiners’ Rules, Section .0500, Requirements for Applicants, Rule .0503, Requirements for Military Spouse Comity Applicants, waiving the bar license application fee for military spouses. This amendment comes after 10 months of advocacy by the MSJDN State Licensing Committee and support from the North Carolina Association of Women Attorneys. North Carolina now allows military spouses who meet comity application requirements to apply for a North Carolina bar license with no fee.
This movement followed the example set by Kentucky in March 2022 as the first state to waive annual bar fees for active duty personnel and military spouses. MSJDN was welcomed with overwhelming optimism by the North Carolina State Bar in December 2022 when proposing the implementation of bar fee waivers for military spouse attorneys. This action demonstrates North Carolina’s commitment to supporting military spouse attorneys as they navigate career and service and will save military spouse attorneys $1500. North Carolina has long been a State Bar that has supported military spouse attorneys, being one of the first states to establish a military spouse reciprocity application.
MSJDN is thrilled that the North Carolina State Bar, Board of Law Examiners of the State of North Carolina, and North Carolina Supreme Court continue to support military families and military spouse attorney careers.
Ongoing Efforts in North Carolina
The MSJDN State Licensing Committee is still engaged in advocacy efforts in North Carolina to have annual bar fees waived.
Call to Action
Barred in North Carolina?
Write the North Carolina State Bar and Board of Law Examiners for the State of North Carolina to express your support of annual bar fees for military spouse attorneys like active duty military members. You can also write your legislators for the North Carolina General Assembly to express the need for continued support of military spouses. Contact the MSJDN State Licensing Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com for a template for submission.
Barred in another state? File a formal petition with your state bar association and/or state legislature to request a waiver of bar application and/or annual bar dues for military spouse attorneys. Reach out to the MSJDN State Licensing Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com for a template for submission.