State bar membership and the law department’s role

Is it the responsibility of the law department to monitor its in-house counsels’ state bar eligibility? This includes being properly admitted as well as maintaining continuing legal education (CLE) credits as may be required. Auditors of a city’s law department placed this obligation on the department, but I disagree.

I view it as the responsibility of each lawyer to keep current his or her admission to the bar. The law department properly pays dues and the costs of CLE (especially if lawyers who take CLE share the wealth), but otherwise the administrative burden is unjustified.

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