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Treatments for Post Bar Exam Syndrome

There's a common syndrome that sets in after you take the bar exam and before you get results.

It starts with a question that you can't answer, and that's the problem. Did you pass?

Here's the good news: you can actually do something about the Post Bar Exam Syndrome. Let's forget about the bad news; that's something you don't have to worry about for now.

Judge Greenlights ADA Case Against Florida Bar Examiners

Julius Hobbs, a law student, dealt with explosives and other perils when he was an Army captain in Iraq and Afghanistan.

It caused him psychological problems with anxiety and depression. It also contributed to a drinking problem, he told Florida bar examiners when he applied for admission to practice law.

They said he had to undergo a psychiatric evaluation and other psychological testing, so he sued them under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Now the bar examiners have a problem because you cannot be more American than an Army veteran.

Septuagenarian Law Grad an Oldie but Goodie

At the ready age of 71, John VanBuskirk graduated from law school.

Although he was the oldest student in his class, he was ready to take on the world. When he took the bar exam, however, a rumor started that he had passed.

"That's too bad," a classmate said. "I really liked the guy."

By "passed," he thought VanBuskirk had died. Of course, that's not the story.

With bar prep starting around the country, test takers are no doubt being bombarded with advice every which way they turn. Even first-time test takers share advice with each other like they know what they're talking about.

However, when it comes right down to it, there is some sage-like advice that nearly everyone can agree shouldn't be ignored, and some of it is collected below.

What Is the Cal Bar's 'Productive Mindset Intervention Program'?

Dear L. Michelle,

This is for you and 3,418 people who took the California Bar Exam in February 2018 but failed. Please pass it along.

In response to your hilarious missive about the the test, I cannot say that I agree with your directive to the State Bar to "Go F*ck Yourself." I laughed per paragraph, but I feel your pain.

I can say something about the bar's new program to help test-takers, however, which you referenced in your letter. Here's the thing -- it's a work in progress. 

Bar prep is not easy. It feels about the same as studying for every single final exam you had in law school, except with the added caveat that you're about to take them all at the same time.

Simply put, there's no time to waste. Unfortunately, the schedules that most bar prep courses create are unforgiving when it comes to the pace of the course. A sick day or two can really set you back, and if you can't catch up, you could find yourself struggling for the rest of the course. But, it doesn't have to go down like that. If you've missed a couple days, or have just fallen behind, below you can read three tips on how to catch up.

Graduation ceremonies are happening across the country. But graduating law students don't get to revel in the same way as other graduates, at least not until after the bar exam, which is usually over two months after commencement.

Sure, earning a JD is a big deal, but getting licensed as an attorney is, arguably, more important. And while most law grads will take a week or two off before getting started on bar prep, that decision may be one to carefully consider. Getting a little bit of rest and relaxation before going full bore bar prep can be really beneficial, but if you aren't prepared for your bar prep course on day 1, you could be courting catastrophe. So before you set sail on your graduation vacation, heed the following:

Out-of-State Law Students Improve on Dreaded California Bar Exam

Perhaps it was the less-fatigue factor that helped test-takers improve on the California bar exam.

The exam -- once the toughest bar exam in the country with three days of sometimes impossible questions -- slimmed down to a two-day format last July. With that change, the overall pass rate climbed up 6 percent over the previous year.

It was a reprieve for students and California law schools, which were so desperate to improve pass rates they asked the state supreme court to lower the cut score. The latest results show, however, it's good to be an out-of-state law student.

For most law students, it is no surprise that the moral character and fitness examiners might take a look at their social media. And depending on what's found, it could actually matter significantly.

One prominent example involved a prospective Maryland lawyer who, in addition to having a criminal record, also had made numerous posts on social media that would make one wonder if he wasn't just some rude online teenage troll. However, one prospective lawyer's failure might just be what saves you from failing your moral character exam, if you heed the lesson here.

Not all lawyers take the same path to getting licensed. Fortunately for those that take the road less travelled, a decision from Supreme Court for the state of Washington might help to provide some clarity as to when the road less travelled becomes the road from which there's no coming back. In short, the court ruled that a former inmate, who is now a law grad and Skadden Fellow recipient, can actually sit for her state's bar exam.

Previously, the moral character and fitness review board had denied the accomplished grad the chance to sit for the bar exam. However, after appealing the decision, where over 100 individuals and organizations joined as amicus in support, the state's highest court reversed the review board's decision.