TOPEKA — The Kansas Supreme Court has adopted a new rule that requires municipal court judges who are not licensed attorneys to complete additional continuing education each year.

The rule, effective Jan. 1, 2018, requires the judges to earn 13 hours of continuing judicial education credit each calendar year. At least two of those hours must involve judicial ethics. All courses must pertain to the functions of municipal courts.

Currently, a municipal court judge who does not have a law license, and who is not a district magistrate judge, is required to complete 10 hours of continuing judicial education each year to remain qualified. Education requirements for municipal court judges who are licensed attorneys and those who are also magistrates are governed by different Supreme Court rules.

About 55 of the state's 230 municipal court judges will be affected by the new rule, which is Supreme Court Rule 502. There are 390 municipal courts in the state.

Public comment on the proposed changes was accepted from early July through early August.

The order can be found at www.kscourts.org/Kansas-Courts/Supreme-Court/Orders/2017/2017SC81.pdf.

The new rule can be found at www.kscourts.org/rules/New_Rules_and_Amendments/ContLegalEducation/Rule_502.pdf.