Another way for an attorney licensed in one state to “transfer” their license to another state. States have different regulations regarding whether they will acknowledge and accept a license to practice law obtained in another state. That acknowledgement is called “reciprocity.” One state recognizes the license of another state and allows that attorney to practice law in the second state.

As with original licensing regulations, each state determines for itself whether to recognize an attorney’s license from another state. Some states do not allow reciprocity at all, including California, Florida, and Nevada. Other states allow reciprocity only from states that allow reciprocity of its own license. Both Missouri and Kansas recognize this mutuality of admission without examination.[i]

In order to be eligible for reciprocity, sometimes called admission on motion without examination, most states require a set number of years that the attorney must have been engaged in the active practice of law. Five years is a typical minimum required number of years. Some states also require the attorney to have graduated from an ABA-approved law school.

[i] Mo. Sup. Ct. R. 8.10; Kan. Sup. Ct. R. 708.