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Lawyers in the Philippines are required to participate in Mandatory Continuing Legal Education (MCLE) programs to ensure their knowledge and skills stay up-to-date. The number of units needed varies depending on the compliance period. Let’s break down the different unit requirements:

The MCLE 36 Units

This is the standard MCLE requirement for all active members of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) who are not exempt under Rule 7 of the MCLE Rules. Lawyers must complete these MCLE 36 units every three years.

Here’s how the 36 units are distributed:

    • Core Subjects (19 Units):
      • Legal Ethics (6 Units)
      • Trial and Pre-Trial Skills (4 Units)
      • Alternative Dispute Resolution (5 Units)
      • Updates on Substantive and Procedural Laws & Jurisprudence (9 Units)
    • Law Practice Skills (6 Units):
      • Legal Writing & Oral Advocacy (4 Units)
      • International Law & Conventions (2 Units) 
    • Electives (11 Units): These remaining units can cover various subjects the MCLE Committee approves.


The MCLE 24 Units Course

Lawyers may encounter MCLE 24 units during their initial compliance period. This applies to lawyers who:

    • Just became IBP members.
    • Were previously inactive and are now rejoining the IBP.

The MCLE 24 units typically follow the same subject area distribution as the MCLE 36 units but in a proportionally reduced format. It’s recommended to confirm the specific distribution with the MCLE Committee.


Can lawyers take more than 36 units?

There aren’t necessarily more unit requirements beyond the 36 units for every three-year compliance period. However, it’s important to note that:

Lawyers can choose to take more than the required units. These extra units can be used towards future compliance periods.

The MCLE Committee may occasionally set additional requirements for specific groups of lawyers.


Staying Informed

For the latest information on MCLE unit requirements and compliance periods, refer to our official blog and official resources of the Supreme Court’s MCLE Committee.