Magistrate Requirements

Eligibility

Under Civil Rule 53, Juvenile Rule 40, Criminal Rule 19, Traffic Rule 14 and Superintendence Rule 19 (A), a magistrate shall have been engaged in the practice of law for at least four years and be in good standing with the Supreme Court of Ohio at the time of appointment.

Appointment and Authority

Under Civil Rule 53, Juvenile Rule 40, Criminal Rule 19 and Traffic Rule 14, a court of record may appoint one or more magistrates who shall have been engaged in the practice of law for at least four years and be in good standing with the Supreme Court of Ohio at the time of the appointment.  Superintendence Rule 19.1 requires that all municipal courts having more than two judges shall appoint one or more magistrates to hear specified proceedings.  They derive their authority under the same Rules. Magistrates are also granted special authority to hear protection orders under Civil Rule 65.1.

Annual Registration

Gov. Bar R. X, Section 10(C) requires that each magistrate register annually with the Secretary of the Commission on Continuing Legal Education on a form provided by the Commission. Click here to obtain the form. The form must be signed and returned to the address below no later than April 1 of each year. The form must also be completed and returned if you are no longer serving in the capacity of a magistrate with an indication of the end date of your appointment.

Susan B. Christoff, Secretary
Supreme Court of Ohio
Office of Attorney Services
c/o Magistrate Annual Registration
65 South Front St., 5th Floor
Columbus, Ohio 43215-3431
Phone: 614-387-9325

CLE Requirement

Gov. Bar R X, Sec.10(A) & (B) requires magistrates appointed pursuant to Rule 53 of the Ohio Rules of Civil Procedure, Rule 40 of the Ohio Rules of Juvenile Procedure, Rule 14 of the Ohio Traffic Rules, or Rule 19 of the Ohio Rules of Criminal Procedure to complete at least 10 hours of continuing legal education in each reporting period that are offered by the Judicial College of the Ohio Supreme Court.  Effective January 1, 2014, magistrates will be required to earn two and one-half hours of instruction in “professional conduct.”   However, they will no longer be required to earn one hour of ethics, one hour of professionalism, and one-half hour of substance abuse education every two years.  Magistrates will be able to meet their “professional conduct” requirement by choosing from a variety of professional conduct programs that include instruction on ethics, professionalism, substance abuse, mental illness, and access to justice and fairness in the courts.  For a complete list of topics that may be eligible for “professional conduct” education, see Gov. Bar R. X, Sec. 3(B), eff. Jan. 1, 2014

Financial Disclosure

A magistrate serving on a full- or part-time basis any time during the year is required by R.C. 102.02(A)(2)(c) and Rule 3.15 of the Ohio Code of Judicial Conduct to complete and file an annual financial disclosure statement. Effective in 2014, there is the option to complete the form electronically, but this option will become mandatory in 2016.

The online portal may be accessed at https://disclosure.ethics.ohio.gov.

If you do not choose to file electronically this year, a copy of the financial disclosure statement and instructions regarding completion of your form may be found at http://www.supremecourt.ohio.gov/Boards/BOC/FDS

Code of Judicial Conduct

Both Full and Part-Time Magistrates are subject to the Code of Judicial Conduct which may be found at

http://www.supremecourt.ohio.gov/LegalResources/Rules/conduct/judcond0309.pdf