For an attorney to be board certified, there are several things that come into play. The first one is, and for many people, the hardest, is passing an exam over and above the bar exam. So to be a lawyer, you have to pass the bar exam. To be a board certified lawyer, you have to pass the bar exam plus a harder certification exam. In addition, lawyers have to pass a peer review in which other lawyers and judges certify that those board certified lawyers are specialized enough in their knowledge that they can hold them out as board certified specialists. Finally, in addition, the lawyer has to have a certain amount of trial experience. The bare minimum is 15 but most board certified lawyers have far more than that.