CEDS Candidate Recertification Handbook

CEDS Recertification

The CEDS Recertification Candidate Handbook provides guidance and requirements that seek to assure that Certified E-Discovery Specialists (CEDS) maintain and enhance their e-discovery knowledge and skills for as long as they hold the CEDS designation. Professionals who hold the CEDS credential are required to earn qualifying continuing education credits through experience, training and education.

Download the recertification application here.

Continuing Education Credit Requirements

Forty (40) continuing education credits are required to be completed every two (2) years in order to maintain the CEDS credential.

If you need help meeting the required CEDS credits please call our Certification Department with questions on ways to earn CEDS credits at 305-377-2050.

Candidates will not be granted continuing education credits for activities completed prior to obtaining their CEDS credential or completed more than two (2) years prior to the recertification period. All applicable continuing education credits must be earned prior to the December 31st deadline of the year for which the candidate is applying for CEDS recertification.

CEDS Recertification Deadlines

Recertification candidates are required to submit a completed CEDS Recertification Application, and an evaluation fee, postmarked no later than December 31 of the second year after receiving the CEDS credential or from the most recent CEDS recertification. Applications postmarked after December 31 of the year for CEDS recertification will incur a late fee and will only be accepted until March 31 of the year following the two-year CEDS recertification period. These are examples of recertification schedules:

Date of Certification or Most Recent Recertification Deadline


Applicant passes CEDS exam prior to December 31, 2011 December 31, 2013
Applicant passes CEDS exam Jan. 1, 2012 – Dec. 31, 2012 December 31, 2014
Applicant recertifies by December 31, 2013 December 31, 2015
Applicant recertifies by December 31, 2014 December 31, 2016

CEDS Continuing Education Credits Supporting Documentation

Candidates do not need to include supporting documentation with the recertification application, but are advised to retain original copies of their supporting documents in case ACEDS finds it necessary to request an audit of their records.

Recertification Application Fees and Timeline (for the year your recertification is due)

Time Period





Early Application Before June 30  $ 150  $ 100  $ 250
Regular Application July 1 to December 31  $ 200  $ 150  $ 300
Late Application January 1 to March 31  $ 250  $ 200  $ 350

Time Period Timeframes Members Government Non-members Early Application Before June 30 $ 150 $100 $250 Regular Application July 1 to December 31 $ 200 $150 $300 Late Application January 1 to March 31 $ 250 $200 $350

  1. ACEDS will not accept recertification applications postmarked after the late application deadline of March 31. They may contact the Certification Department with questions at 305-377-2050.
  2. Checks, credit cards and wire transfers are acceptable forms of payment.

Interim Review of Continuing Education Credits

ACEDS will review during the recertification period, at no cost to the CEDS member, continuing education documentation of CEDS members to determine if the submitted credits qualify and the number of approved credits assigned to the activity. All supporting documents submitted for this review must be accompanied by a CEDS Continuing Education Review form.

Denial of Recertification and Removal of the CEDS Credential

Failure to submit the CEDS recertification application by the late application deadline of March 31 following the year of recertification will result in denial of recertification and removal of the CEDS credential. Candidates may contact the Certification Department with questions at 305-377-2050.


To submit an application, you should review the application and policy, and then complete the required information and sign the application and verification forms. Please allow four (4) weeks from the time ACEDS receives your application for review and notification. Applications submitted near a deadline (e.g., October 1, December 15, or March 31) may take longer to review because of the higher volume of recertification applications received.

Late Application Policy

CEDS-certified persons are expected to submit their applications on or before the regular recertification deadline. Applications postmarked the same day as the deadline are considered on-time submissions. The early application deadline for recertification is June 30 of the year of the applicant’s recertification. The regular application deadline is December 30 of the year of the applicant’s recertification. The late application deadline is March 31 of the year following the applicant’s recertification deadline. After the late application deadline of March 31, the applicant must take the CEDS examination to obtain the CEDS designation. The only exceptions for documented extenuating circumstances are described below in the section, “Extensions.”


Occasionally, extenuating circumstances, such as prolonged unemployment or serious illness of the applicant or a close family member, may prevent CEDS-certified professionals from meeting the required 40 credits of continuing experience, education and training over a two-year period. One-year extensions of the recertification deadline can be requested under such circumstances. The extension may be granted only once during a CEDS-certified professional’s recertification period and must be approved by December 31 of the applicant’s recertification year. The fee to request an extension is $100. Applicants may also choose to recertify by examination on or before their recertification deadline at a reduced fee, as stated in the CEDS Candidate Handbook. These are examples of persons who may be eligible for an extension

  1. Applicants who have been out of work for at least one year of the two-year recertification period because of a layoff or child birth or child care responsibilities.
  2. Applicants who have spent a significant amount of time caring for a seriously ill family member or who have suffered serious illness themselves.
  3. Applicants who are deployed to active duty in the armed forces for at least a six-month assignment.

If approved, the recertification expiration date will be extended for one year, thus allowing time to accumulate the necessary continuing education credits. At the end of one year, applicants will be required to submit a completed recertification application form demonstrating that they meet the continuing education requirements. The full recertification application fee is also due at that time. Upon successful recertification, the new two-year recertification period will begin at the end of the extension period. To request the extension, the following materials must be submitted by December 31 of the applicant’s year for recertification:

  1. A written request for extension explaining the extenuating circumstances.
  2. Documentation of the extenuating circumstances, which may include a letter from a physician, notice of termination or receipt of unemployment benefits.
  3. The extension request fee of $100.
  4. A completed recertification application demonstrating the efforts to meet recertification requirements.

Ineligibility for extensions

Applicants who have not accrued the required 40 recertification credits by the expiration date or who cannot demonstrate extenuating circumstances or have not submitted a recertification application before their expiration date are not eligible for an extension.

CEDS Certification Dormant State

CEDS certified professionals who are not able to recertify by the late application deadline of March 31 of the year following the applicant’s recertification period may request that their CEDS certification be placed in a “Dormant State”. A CEDS certification in a Dormant State is inactive until the member can provide ACEDS with the required Recertification Application and supporting documentation of the 40 continuing education credits earned within the two-year period immediately prior to the year of the application to reinstate the CEDS certification. The fee to request a Dormant State of the CEDS designation is $50. The late application fee at the time of request to reinstate will apply.

Lapsed CEDS Certifications

CEDS-certified professionals who do not submit an application by December 31 of the recertification year will be considered lapsed and no longer certified. ACEDS will notify CEDS certified members if their certification expires and will also provide certification status to employers who request it. Expired CEDS certified professionals must cease using the CEDS designation immediately upon notification. To become certified and to display the CEDS designation, the expired CEDS-certified professional must retake the CEDS examination.

Recertification by Examination

CEDS-certified professionals who are required to recertify by taking the CEDS examination must submit a written request with payment by the regular application deadline of December 31 of the year required to recertify. The cost to retake the certification examination is $150 for members, $100 for government members and $250 for non-members. Applicants who submit applications with the inappropriate payment amount will be invoiced the difference and remain unprocessed until the full amount is paid. Fees, which are nonrefundable, may only be paid by credit card, or check payable to ACEDS. The applicants name and company must appear on all payments made by check.

The CEDS Examination Application is found in the CEDS Candidate Handbook, which may be downloaded at ACEDS.org. An applicant must register for the CEDS examination in the year following the recertification deadline. Applicants who do not pass the CEDS examination by December 31 of the year following the recertification deadline will be considered lapsed and no longer certified

Applicants who do not submit a written request to retake the CEDS examination by the regular deadline date of December 31 of the recertification year will be required to proceed through the regular CEDS examination process and pay the regular fees at the time of submission of the CEDS Examination Application.

Reminders and Application Submission

CEDS professionals should know their recertification cycle and submit a completed application before the recertification deadline. As a professional courtesy, ACEDS will send at least two e-mails or mailings reminding all CEDS professionals before the end of their recertification cycles, one approximately six months before the expiration date and one approximately three months before the recertification deadline. ACEDS will send the reminders to the e-mail address and home or office address on file, so it is important that ACEDS be notified of changes in contact information. Recertification cycles and submission requirements will not be changed because a CEDS professional did not receive reminders that were sent to the addresses on file.

Download the recertification application here.