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Most states have already disclosed their July bar exam results (sorry, California, you've got to wait a little longer), and the results are pretty grim. July 2014 had the lowest passage rates in recent memory, and the MBE looks to be the culprit.

Why? Well, it could be NCBE's fault for failing to normalize the scores. It could be due to an increase in the number of repeat test-takers, who generally score worse with each re-taking. Or, it could be the thing that is obvious but no one wants to say: The test-takers this time just weren't very smart.

It's bar results season! On Tuesday, New York dropped results a day earlier last year, and weeks earlier than expected, reports Above the Law. Californians are going to be waiting in agony for at least a few more weeks. If you're from one of the flyover states, the length of your torture may vary, but the significance of the moment won't: This is the biggest test of your life.

And while many are understandably excited, others are recovering from a hangover with nothing but sorrow and months of bar prep ahead of them. Once the caffeine and aspirin kicks in, you're going to want to get to work, whether you passed or failed.

Here's the game plan for both:

The bar exam sucks. But you know what sucks almost as much? Filling out the application for the bar exam.

Because states want to make sure they aren't admitting a three-time felon or any other deviants, they make you provide an insane amount of personal information that you probably don't have access to, like the name of your supervisor at your two-month-long pizza delivery gig back in high school (a guy who certainly doesn't work there anymore).

It's a nightmare. And it's expensive as hell, even more so if you take the time to fill out your application carefully and the deadline passes. We've been through it, some of us multiple times, so we thought that a big list of (hopefully) everything you'll need for the application (besides cash) would come in handy. (H/T to the Virginia Board of Bar Examiners for providing many of these.) Of course, each state has its own requirements, but this checklist should cover almost everything:

This came out of nowhere: The New York State Bar is considering adopting the Uniform Bar Exam (with a small twist). If it does, New York will be the largest state, by far, to do so, and it'll mean big things for the future of the UBE. It'll also mean big things for law grads and lawyers who want more job portability, as the UBE would cover 15 states if adopted in New York.

Meantime, Iowa, which was considering the UBE and a diploma privilege for in-state graduates, declined to adopt either. It'll be an old-fashioned, state-specific bar exam, at least for now.

Here's a tip for first-timers who are planning on working full-time while studying for the bar: Don't do it. Failing doesn't guarantee that you'll have a crappy career, but it certainly doesn't help your short-term and long-term earning potential. Do anything and everything in your power to, at minimum, work just part-time, with a week off before the actual test.

But, if you wish to proceed, or if you're a retaker, a second state/Uniform Bar Exam taker, or a candlestick maker, we've got a few ideas on how to balance your full-time with your bar study time. Here are three tips that can pay off:

Baloney isn't just at the deli counter. Following last week's overhyped ExamSoft "barmageddon" story, Above the Law posted that law firms were actively "trawling" for class representatives in preparation for the inevitable lawsuits. You know how cartoon characters get dollar signs in their eyes? I imagine it's a lot like that.

Jay Edelson, of Edelson PC in Chicago, broke through the tape to become the first lawyer to file a class action against ExamSoft.

In most states, each day's bar exam responses have to be uploaded each night by a predetermined deadline. Miss that deadline, and you're completely and utterly [expletived]. Now, imagine how much you'd freak out if you tried to upload your exam, but you received an error message and your exam disappeared off of your computer.

And the ExamSoft tech support line was busy.

And the company was tweeting instructions on how to manually upload responses, a procedure that didn't actually work, according to Above the Law's tipsters.

Yeah. You really don't need this crap, especially on day one of the biggest test of your entire life.

Going solo out of school? Spend more time developing practice skills and leave the marketing work for the experts.

It's Friday @FindLawLP and we got perhaps the most random question we could've imagined, regarding the use of private detectives in legal practice. In other oddities, with less than a week until the bar exam, we've had a flood of panic-stricken test takers flooding to our site.

Bar exam and private dicks. That's what's on tap for #DearFindLaw, our weekly advice column for young attorneys, procrastinating bar examinees, and apparently, private detectives. And if you have a question for next week's column, you can find me on Twitter @PeacockEsq.

The bar exam was the most stressful time of my entire life. I wouldn't wish that on anyone, except ... I went through the suck, most lawyers go through the suck, and YOU TOO SHOULD GO THROUGH THE SUCK! It's a rite of passage, a filter to remove the barely literate and the incomprehensibly lazy, especially in states with ridiculously high passage rates, like Iowa, Wisconsin, and South Dakota.

Proponents of the move argue that it will help grads avoid four months of stress (boo hoo) and accrued student loan interest, but here's a better idea, one that Iowa is also considering, but nobody is talking about: adopt the Uniform Bar Exam, especially since, as Iowans may already know, they are basically using it anyway.

One of my friends, years into his legal career, is still doing doc review in New York. Another one is working for a small firm in Southern California and hates his debt-ridden life. You see, in the major legal markets, there are still very few jobs, even for those of us with a couple of years' worth of experience. And for recent grads? Forget it -- there's nothing entry-level in the major markets.

Maybe it's time to rethink geography. When I graduated, I figured homeless on a beach beat sleeping on frozen streets, but maybe, just maybe, aiming for a crowded marketplace isn't the best move. In fact, why not aim for, say, fourteen marketplaces? This is the appeal of the Uniform Bar Exam: one test, one score, with portability to fourteen states.