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Bar News - October 15, 2014

Court Issues Reminder to Comply With Filing Trust Accounting Certifications

Lawyers in active practice in New Hampshire, as in many other states, are required to file an annual trust accounting certificate. The certificate requires that lawyers verify their compliance with trust accounting rules. The trust accounting certificate requirement was adopted by the Supreme Court to make certain that lawyers are aware of the rules governing the safeguarding of client funds, as well as to verify that the rules are being complied with.

The Supreme Court believes that the trust accounting certification process is essential to protecting the public’s trust in the integrity of lawyers and the legal profession. It believes that it is the obligation of the court and of all lawyers to establish that the current system of self-regulation is effective in protecting clients and the public.

The certification process is not difficult. The certificate is self-explanatory, and it does not require the assistance of an accountant to complete it.

– Eileen Fox, NH Supreme Court Clerk

Don’t Overlook the Requirement

Don’t hold client funds? Stopped practice during the year? You still need to file a form.

The NH Bar Association reminds members that NH Supreme Court Rule 50-A requires that any attorney licensed to practice in the State of New Hampshire, having “ACTIVE” status any time between June 1, 2013 and May 31, 2014, must file the Trust Accounting Compliance certificate (TAC form) by Aug. 1. 2014.

Fines of $100 per month, up to a total of $300, will be levied by the NH Supreme Court, after which a member will be suspended by the Court.

The only exceptions to the mandatory filing of the TAC form are for full-time active judges, court clerks, or full-time martial masters who held their positions for the entire reporting year.

Attorneys that have not held client funds must still sign the TAC form stating that they were not in private practice during the reporting period and never held client funds.

Trust compliance forms are available online. Include a check for $100 for each month since Aug. 1 that you have not filed. Late fees in the amount of $100 per month late since Aug. 1 should be included with payment. Mail the form and payment to NH Supreme Court, 1 Charles Doe Drive, Concord, NH 03301.

Supreme Court Rule 42(9) requires all NH admitted attorneys to notify the Bar Association of any address change, home or office.

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