Requirements for Membership

You must be a member of the Association to receive certification. To become a member you must:

  1. Be employed in a Public Administrator’s, Public Guardian’s, or Public Conservator’s office in one of the 58 counties and
  2. Have written approval of the Principal member of the Association or his or her designee

Requirements for Certification

Requirements that California Public Administrators, Guardians and Conservators be certified by the Association fall under the following statutes:

Public Guardians…
Effective January 1, 2008
Probate Code Section 2923

Public Conservators…
Effective January 1, 2010
Probate Code Section 1456.2

Public Administrators…
Effective January 1, 2010
Probate Code Section 7605


Criteria for certification, eligibility and standards for training are defined in the Association’s Standards & Certification Policy document.

Eligibility For Certification By The Association 

  1. Member in good standing of the Association (payment of County fee as well as current in individual membership dues for all years covered under certification)
  2. Forty (40) credit hours of continuing education every 4 years. The training must be given by a provider, which has been approved by the Association.
  3. Training attendance verification documentation and credit fees must be provided to the Association within 90 days of the date of the training

Historical Exemption: If a member had less than 30 credit hours of training and a “Certificate of Completion” had not been obtained by June 30, 2007 or 2008 (based on the implementation of California legislation requiring certification by the Association), the member had to complete 40 credit hours of training for certification. Any credit hours accumulated within the previous four year period was applied to the 40 credit hours requirement.

Please Note: Certification is based on a fiscal calendar year from July 1 – June 30. For example, if a member completes 40 hours of certification training by November 1, 2016, their certification date will be June 30, 2017.

Tracking Certification Records

Association members are responsible for keeping up to date with their certification requirements and certification status (have enough credits and course types to be considered certified) while the Association is responsible for housing those records on an easily accessible platform. The Association will provide verification documentation related to certification in the following situations:

  1. Association Trainings: Any training provided by the Association’s Executive Office will generate a certificate for a member
  2. Trainings Not Provided by the Association’s Executive Office: The Association will provide, upon written request, an official transcript of all classes taken by a member once a year
  3. Certification Completion: The Association will provide a Certificate of Completion once a member has obtained 40 credit hours of training within the four (4)-year period as long as they meet all eligibility requirements listed under Certification Criteria above

When Are Members Considered Certified?

Certification covers a 4-year period and members are considered certified for the next 4-years once they have completed all certification criteria in their last 4-year cycle. This is broken down as follows for new and existing members:

  • New Members: For new members, this means that they are certified after their first 4-year certification window having completed all criteria for certification (40 credit hours earned and all 4 years of member dues and county fees paid). That certification status is active for the next 4 years while they are seeking recertification in their next 4-year window.
  • Existing Members: For members previously certified, they are considered certified during their current 4-year cycle while they are seeking recertification.

Penalties for Non-compliance

If a member does not meet the 40 hour requirement in 4 years, they will be noted in the system as non-certified and to be in compliance must by the end of the second four-year period meet 40 hours in the 4 years as well as any additional hours not completed in the prior 4-year certification window.

Additionally, individual memberships that have not been paid for more than 120 days after July 1 will be placed in inactive status and members will be unable to access the Association’s membership portal, sign up for classes or receive credits until payment in full is made.

Example: If a member completes 35 certification hours in a 4-year window, the subsequent 4-year certification window would be the standard 40 hours required as well as the additional 5 hours not completed in the prior certification window. This penalty is cumulative each 4-year cycle.

Standards & Certification Policy