Magistrate Requirements


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

Magistrates are required to complete an annual registration pursuant to Rule 19 of the Rules of Superintendence and Rule 10 of the Rules for the Government of the Bar.

If your appointment occurred after 12/31/17, the administrative judge of your appointing court must notify the Office of Attorney Services of your appointment pursuant to Rules 4.01 and Rule 19 of the Rules of Superintendence for the Courts of Ohio, before you can annually register.

For more information, see:

Magistrate Registration

Administrative Judges Notification of Magistrate Appointments and Terminations

Please contact the Office of Attorney Services by either calling 614.387.9320 or by sending an email to if you have any questions.

For more information about Magistrate Registration contact:

Gina Palmer, Director
Supreme Court of Ohio
Office of Attorney Services
c/o Magistrate Annual Registration
65 South Front St., 5th Floor
Columbus, Ohio 43215-3431
Phone: 614-387-9320

CLE Requirement

Effective Jan. 1, 2019, the Continuing Legal Education (CLE) requirements increased for magistrates to the same requirement as judges. All magistrates, including full-time and part-time magistrates, are required to earn 40 hours of continuing legal education, including 10 hours of instruction through courses offered by the Ohio Supreme Court Judicial College, every two years.  Further, as part of the 10-hour Judicial College education requirement, three hours of instruction must be designated as “judicial conduct,” which may include courses on topics such as judicial ethics, judicial professionalism, and access to justice. Gov. Bar R. X, Sec. 10(C).

Attorneys appointed as a magistrate on or after Jan. 1, 2019, or sitting magistrates who change jurisdictions will also be required to complete the orientation and mentor program.

Any questions regarding the requirements should be directed to the Office of Attorney Services at 614.387.9320.

Magistrate Orientation

New Magistrates are required to complete the Magistrate Orientation Program, which is conducted by the Supreme Court of Ohio Judicial College and carries Judicial College CLE credit.  The orientation program must be completed within 12 months of your date of appointment as a magistrate.  Sitting magistrates who change court jurisdictions are required to attend a portion of the orientation program (see below). For more information, see also Gov.Jud. R. IV(4)(F).

Please check the Judicial College course calendar for the dates of this program.

Registration for the Magistrate Orientation Program is invitation-only. You cannot register yourself. After you complete your initial annual registration and your administrative judge confirms, the Judicial College will email you with more information. For details on the registration process, see Annual Registration, above.

Questions should be directed to the Judicial College at 614.387.9445 or

Jurisdiction changers: Sitting magistrates who change court jurisdictions must complete a portion of the orientation program. The following chart provides examples

Former Court Appointment

New Court Appointment New Magistrate Orientation Required?
Municipal Court of Common Pleas Yes (common pleas portion only)
Juvenile Juvenile/Probate Yes (probate portion only)
Domestic Relations in County A Domestic Relations in County B No

The training is offered twice per year and the 2023 dates are:

March 20-22, 2024 
October 2-4, 2023 


Pursuant to Rule X for the Government of the Bar, all new magistrates must also participate in a one-year mentoring program as part of The Magistrate Orientation Program. The Judicial College Mentor Program seeks to elevate the competence, collegiality, and success of Ohio’s judiciary. What is required of a mentor? The mentor’s responsibility is to provide information, assistance, and encouragement to the new magistrate during the first year on the bench. The program requires a minimum of four quarterly contacts over the course of a twelve-month period. What are the benefits to the mentor? Mentors often find that serving as a mentor gives them: · Renewed sense of purpose · Opportunity to give back to the judicial community and leave a legacy · Opportunity to reflect on one’s own practices.

For more information, contact Sam Campbell, Education Program Manager for the Ohio Judicial College at 614-387-9462 or email him at

Financial Disclosure

Each judge, retired judge eligible for assignment to active duty, magistrate, and judicial candidate is required to file an annual financial disclosure statement with the Ohio Board of Professional Conduct. See R.C. 102.02 and Jud. Cond. R. 3.15. Your statement includes activity in calendar year 2019.  For most Judicial Branch filers, the statement must be filed on or before May 15, 2020.  If you are a candidate for  judicial office in 2020, your filing deadline may be earlier than May 15.  Please see the FDS Instructions for your filing deadline.

There is no filing fee for a judge, retired judge, magistrate, or judicial candidate who files a financial disclosure statement with the Board of Professional Conduct.  The costs of administering the financial disclosure filing requirements are paid from attorney registration fees assessed and collected by the Supreme Court.

Each judicial branch filer must electronically file his or her financial disclosure statement.  Electronic filing has several advantages including the assurance that you have completed all necessary portions of the statement prior to filing, the receipt of an immediate acknowledgement that your form has been filed, and the ability to print or save a time-stamped copy of your completed statement.  In subsequent years, your financial disclosure statement will be pre-populated with information contained in the previous year’s statement so that you will need only to update your statement before filing.   The online portal can be accessed here:

The online portal may be accessed at


Code of Judicial Conduct

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