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Dues structure and rates

The Massachusetts Bar Association membership year is drawing to a close, and membership renewal notices for the 2017-18 year will be distributed soon. Check your mail to see if you are one of the lucky five members to receive a golden ticket and win a FREE 2017-18 MBA membership! Click here to renew today.

Summer Membership Special

Want to join the Massachusetts Bar Association? Get the rest of this summer for free when you sign up now for the 2017-18 MBA membership year. (The 2017-18 MBA membership year runs Sept. 1, 2017 - Aug. 31, 2018.) Join now and start taking advantage of membership benefits right away. Click here to join.

The Summer Membership Special is offered to new members only, and covers membership through Aug. 31, 2018. Dues are non-refundable and will appear in the shopping cart when registering.

2017-18 Rates

  • Law student: FREE
  • Admitted to bar in 2017: FREE
  • Admitted to bar in 2016: $99
  • Admitted to bar 2013 - 2015: $135
  • Admitted to bar 2008 - 2012: $300
  • Admitted to bar 2007 and prior: $410
  • Sustaining member*: Dues plus $150
  • Life member (50 years at bar): FREE
  • Sitting MA & federal judiciary: FREE

*The sustaining member category applies to those members who demonstrate a high level of commitment to both the association and the profession.

Special categories

  • Government attorney: full-time government employee or legislator: $170
  • Lawyers in transition: $165
  • Legal services attorney: $160
  • Paralegal/legal assistant: full-time paralegal or legal assistant: $160
  • Retired attorney: $160
  • Affiliated professional: non-lawyer, e.g. social worker, doctor, etc.: $195
  • Law professor: teaching full-time, not in private practice: $195
  • Out-of-state attorney: attorney's principal office is located outside Massachusetts: $200

Dues waiver
If approved, all members are expected to pay 50 percent of his or her membership dues. Waivers will not be granted for more than three consecutive years.

Tax information
Massachusetts Bar Association dues are not tax deductible as charitable contributions for income tax purposes. However, they may be tax deductable as an ordinary and necessary business expense, subject to restrictions imposed as a result of association lobbying activities. The MBA estimates that the non-deductible portion of dues allocable to lobbying is 9 percent.

Term of membership
Membership in the MBA runs from Sept. 1 through Aug. 31. Please note that we send reminder notices as renewal time approaches. However, your prompt payment of dues will ensure that you continue to receive all of your benefits in a timely manner. Should your membership lapse, you may reactivate it at any time by becoming current on your dues for the year.

If you need to update any of your membership information, please contact our Member Services Center.

Tel: (617) 338-0530
Fax: (617) 542-3057
E-mail: membership

Dues are not pro-rated and non-refundable.

General section and division information

MBA members can belong to an unlimted number of sections. There are 20 sections and one division that typically develop more than 100 education and specialty programs each year. Below is a list of the available sections:

  • Access to Justice
  • Business Law
  • Civil Litigation
  • Civil Rights and Social Justice
  • Complex Commercial Litigation
  • Criminal Justice
  • Dispute Resolution
  • Family Law
  • Health Law
  • Judicial Administration
  • Juvenile & Child Welfare
  • Labor & Employment
  • Law Practice Management
  • Law Students
  • Probate Law
  • Public Law
  • Real Estate Law
  • The Sole Practitioner & Small Firm
  • Taxation Law
  • Workers' Compensation
  • Young Lawyers Division

For more information on individual sections and the Young Lawyers Division, click here.

  • Each section is governed by a chair and a 15-member council, all appointed by the president of the association annually, with terms commencing Sept. 1. Service on a section council is limited to a maximum of three years on the council and two years as a chair.
  • Each section also includes several practice groups, which are a sub-groups that focus on more specific areas of law. The chair of each particular section names chairs of the practice groups.
  • Ad-hoc committees are established by the section chair around a specific issue and are not expected to last beyond the association year. The exclusive purpose is to develop an opinion and eventually draft a piece of legislation regarding one narrow issue.
  • To manage the day-to-day responsibilities of the section council, the chair often establishes section-specific standing committees.

©2017 Massachusetts Bar Association