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Overview Of Bar Application And Exam Procedures

Introduction to the New York Bar Exam for Foreign-Trained LLMs

In order to be licensed to practice law in any U.S. jurisdiction, applicants must apply for admission to the bar of that states highest court. Federal court admission comes later and may be granted based on an attorneys active state license. Admission requirements vary from state to state, but all states require that applicants pass a bar examination and virtually all require that the applicant pass the Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam , and undergo a Character and Fitness evaluation.

The New York State Board Of Law Examiners


Applicants who missed the October 6, 2021 deadline to submit their application for admission to the Appellate Division may petition the Court of Appeals for a waiver under Court of Appeals Rule 520.14 .


The New York State Board of Law Examiners has entered into reciprocity agreements to permit candidates to transfer scores earned on the remote bar admission examination that was administered on October 5-6, 2020. The Board has entered into reciprocity agreements with the following jurisdictions:

Connecticut, District of Columbia, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon, Tennessee, U.S. Virgin Islands and Vermont. A score off 266 or greater is required in order to transfer the score to New York.

The following candidates will be eligible to transfer to New York a score earned on the remote exam in a reciprocal jurisdiction:

1) Any candidate who graduated from an ABA-approved law school with a J.D. degree and who has not previously sat for a bar exam in any U.S. jurisdiction

2) Any foreign educated candidate who graduated from an ABA-approved law school with an LL.M. degree and who has not previously sat for a bar exam in any U.S. jurisdiction


Bar Exam Application Requirements

Question number one: What are the bar exam application requirements?

To answer this question, refer to relevant examination authority, such as the New York Board of Law examiners .

Beware that requirements differ for foreign bar exam applicants. LLM graduates, in particular, may first need to pass a foreign evaluation of academic credentials.

This requirement, for instance, applies to the New York bar exam for foreigners. Such an evaluation is one of the toughest bar exam application requirements. So, fulfill this NY bar requirement first if you have no US JD degree and consider sitting for bar exam in the US.

Make no mistake: Its the same bar examination but with harder requirements.

The foreign qualification evaluation requires you to submit supporting documentation. To save your time, from the outset, check the eligibility requirements, especially for the New York bar admission. Then, determine if you qualify to apply for bar exam.

The foreign evaluation takes a lot of time in fact, several months following submission of all documents. So, complete this step as soon as possible. For example, I requested evaluation of my foreign academic credentials well over a year and a half before my New York State bar exam registration. As a result, the NY Board approved my qualification in over half a year.

For further details, go to and, on the left-side menu, click Foreign Legal Education.

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All Jd Candidates Applying For The New York State Bar Must Complete The Following Steps:

The New York Law Course is an online, on demand course on important and unique principles of New York law in the following subjects: Administrative Law, Business Relationships, Civil Practice and Procedure, Conflict of Laws, Contracts, Criminal Law and Procedure, Evidence, Matrimonial and Family Law, Professional Responsibility, Real Property, Torts and Tort Damages, and Trusts, Wills and Estates. Completion of the NYLC is required in order to obtain a license to practice law in the State of New York.

The NYLC consists of approximately 17 hours of video lectures with embedded questions that must be answered correctly before you may continue viewing the lecture. You must view each lecture in its entirety.

You may complete the NYLC up to one year before or any time after the date on which you first sit for the UBE, subject to the application filing deadline of Section 520.12 of the Rules of the Court of Appeals.

You must complete the course in its entirety before you may register for the New York Law Examination .

The NYLE is a 50 item, two hour, open book, multiple choice test administered online. It tests important New York rules on the topics of Administrative Law, Business Relationships, Civil Practice and Procedure, Conflict of Laws, Contracts, Criminal Law and Procedure, Evidence, Matrimonial and Family Law, Professional Responsibility, Real Property, Torts and Tort Damages, and Trusts, Wills and Estates.

Apply to take the UBE

  • Law-Related Employment Affidavit
  • Jurisdictions Administering The Mbe

    New York State Board of Law Examiners

    Select a jurisdiction for a summary of bar admission information specific to that jurisdiction and contact information for its bar admission agency.

    Virgin Islands Yes

    The Multistate Bar Examination is a six-hour, 200-question multiple-choice examination developed by NCBE and administered by user jurisdictions as part of the bar examination on the last Wednesday in February and the last Wednesday in July of each year.

    The MBE is only one of a number of measures that a board of bar examiners may use in determining competence to practice. Each jurisdiction determines its own policy with regard to the relative weight given to the MBE and other scores. The MBE is a component of the Uniform Bar Examination . Jurisdictions that administer the UBE weight the MBE component 50%.

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    Information On The Admission To The New York Bar

    Applications for the July bar examination must be filed with the NYS BOLE at NYS BOLE website, between April 1 and April 30. Applications for the February examination must be filed between November 1 and November 30. New York administers the UNIFORM BAR EXAMINATION. For more information, visit the New York Board of Law Examiners website.

    Instructions For Completing On

    Social Security Number Enter your Social Security Number using numbers only. Disclosure of your Social Security Number is required unless you do not have an SSN, in which case you should check the No box at the top of the online application. SSN is required in order to administer the collection of revenue. Your SSN will be encrypted and securely transferred to the Board during the transmission of your online application. Your SSN will not be made public. The Board uses the SSN to verify the identity of an individual to match up the data and documentation received from your law school with your bar exam application and to match up MBE and MPRE scores received from NCBE with your bar exam file. Your SSN may be furnished to the following agencies and individuals during the processing of your bar application and certification for admission: your law school the National Conference of Bar Examiners New York State bar admitting authorities including the Appellate Division, Character and Fitness Committees, and the Attorney Registration Unit and bar admitting agencies in other jurisdictions.

    Date of Birth/Age– Insert your place of birth, date of birth, and age.

    Correspondence Address– If you receive mail at a Post Office Box or other address, you should provide that address in this section.

    NOTE: If the deadline falls on a weekend or holiday, the proofs must be received by the business day preceding the deadline.

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    Bar Exam Registration Deadline

    Once you choose the bar exam dates, up is question number three: When is the bar exam application deadline?

    Every April and November, bar exam candidates decide whether they should register for a bar exam.

    For your reference, herere the next New York bar exam application filing dates:

    Easy to remember, huh?

    Having chosen your bar exam filing dates, registering for bar exam is pretty straightforward.

    If you missed a bar exam deadline already, no problem: look forward to the next one

    What Subjects Are Tested On The New York Bar Exam

    Does the New York Bar Exam Test New York Law?

    Agency, Commercial Paper, Conflict of Laws, Corporations, Domestic Relations, Equity, Federal Jurisdiction, Future Interests, Insurance , Mortgages, NY Practice, NY Professional Responsibility, Partnership, Personal Property, Secured Transactions, Trusts, Wills, Workers Compensation, NY distinctions for all MBE subjects, Contracts, Criminal Law and Procedure, Constitutional Law, Evidence, Real Property, and Torts.

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    Form Law School Certificate

    You will need to submit the Form Law School Certificate. We will verify the information needed on the form and will forward to the Appellate Division department that is checked off on the form. Each department has dates they will accept the form visit their Appellate Division department website for further information.

    Bar Prep Completion Time

    If youre almost ready to take a bar exam, you run into question number five: Will you have enough time to complete your bar exam preparation?

    This greatly depends on your motivation, practice, and persistence. To avoid a bar exam prep burnout, prime your brain for the battle, organize your bar exam studies, and discipline yourself to the max.

    Having chosen the best bar exam prep course, you need to finish not only such bar review materials as lectures, outlines, and flash cards, but also the bar exam practice questions. In my case, for example, I took the risk of using a less-known bar review course, but it worked because of its real bar exam multiple-choice questions. As a smart bar prep, its now one of the best bar prep courses.

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    Taking The New York Bar As A Foreign Lawyer

    To practice law in the United States, any and all lawyers foreign or domestic must be admitted tothe bar association of the state in which they wish to practice. As a result of this fragmented system, each USstate establishes its own rules for bar admission.

    Because of this patchwork system, some states have made the process easier than others and taking the New York baras a foreign lawyer is easier that most. While some 23 state bar associations require all bar applicants, regardlessof their origin, to earn a law degree from a school accredited by the American Bar Association, New York one ofthe nations most attractive legal markets is not one of them. In fact, as compared to some of the nations otherlarge markets, taking the New York Bar as a foreign lawyer can be a straightforward process.

    Straightforward does not, however, mean easy. The New York State Board of Law Examiners* takes its statesrole as the United States most prominent legal market seriously and has established very definite requirements thatall would-be applicants must meet. According to Section 520.6 of the Rules of the Court of Appeals for the Admissionof Attorneys and Counselors at Law, foreign lawyers must satisfy four requirements:

  • Applicants must have a “qualifying degree” that satisfies the educational requirements to practice law in aforeign country. This degree must be a degree in law.
  • Learn more about studying law in the USA by reading our growing article collection.

    Additional Requirements For Admission By Exam Or On Motion

    What the New York Bar Admission Process is Really Like

    Character & Fitness Review

    Candidates, who are successful on the bar exam and the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination or on motion from a reciprocal US jurisdiction, are then certified by the Board to the Appellate Division to conduct the Character and Fitness Review. New York State’s Supreme Court, Appellate Division, is divided into four Judicial Departments and each Department handles its own admission determinations. The Appellate Divisions are responsible for investigating the moral character and general fitness of every applicant seeking admission to practice law in New York.

    The Application for Admission to Practice as an Attorney in New York is uniform in all fourAppellate Division Departments and is to be used by both applicants who have passed the bar examination and applicants applying for admission on motion.

    In addition to the various components in the application for admission, an in-person character and fitness interview will be required of each candidate, and each successful applicant will also be required to appear at a swearing in ceremony to take the oath of office.

    Notifications on when to file an application for admission with the Appellate Division will be provided by the BOLE to each candidate upon certification of approval for admission. Additional information can be found here: New York State Board of Law Examiners – Admission Information

    Biennial Registration

    Mandatory Continuing Legal Education

    Pro Bono

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    Bar Examinations For States Other Than New York

    Students applying to take a bar examination in a jurisdiction other than New York can obtain information on the National Conference of Bar Examiners website.It is the responsibility of the applicant to submit the necessary certification forms to the Office of Registration & Student Records Management.

    The mission of the Office of Registration & Student Records Management is to provide a welcoming, supportive, and professional environment.

    We aim to provide the highest quality of service in an efficient and timely manner.

    Hour Pro Bono Requirement

    All candidates seeking admission after January 1, 2015, with the exception of admission on motion candidates, will need to file documentation showing that they have completed 50 hours of qualifying pro bono work.

    • Applicants will need to complete the 50 hours of pro bono work before they are admitted to the bar, but can sit for the bar exam prior to completing the pro bono requirement.
    • If you are currently a law student at an American Bar Association-approved law school, eligible pro bono work performed at any time after you commenced your legal education will qualify to meet the Requirement, as long as the work does not violate any of your law school’s regulations or policies about student employment or volunteer activities.
    • Applicants need to complete a Form Affidavit of Compliance for each pro bono activity. This form can be completed as you complete each activity.

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    Ny Bar Exam Certification

    After your application has been processed, the BOLE will email to you a Law School Certificate of Attendance form that will be pre-filled with the responses you provided when you completed your online application. You are required to email the Certificate of Attendance form to the Office Registration in order for the information to be certified by the school. You will also be emailed a Specimen of Applicants Handwriting form. The BOLE requires that you bring the Specimen of Applicants Handwriting form to the Office of Registration to complete your handwriting specimen in the presence of a staff member. The Certificate of Attendance and Handwriting Specimen must be submitted to the Office of Registration no later than May 31st. Submission of these forms will be considered authorization for the school to certify you for the NY bar exam.

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    Jd Nys Bar Applicants

  • The New York State Bar Examination
  • J.D. NYS Bar Applicants
  • Visit NY State Board of Law Examiners for detailed information on the New York State bar examination application and requirements. We encourage you to obtain and carefully review the application materials as early as possible and make careful note of the NYS BOLE filing deadlines as there are no provisions for late filing.

    Information On Admission To The New Jersey Bar

    To be admitted to the New Jersey Bar one must:

  • qualify for and pass the New Jersey bar examination or apply using a qualifying Uniform Bar Examination score, or qualify and apply for admission by motion
  • receive a Certification of Character
  • pass the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination with a 75 or higher or pass an approved law school course on ethics with a “C-” or better
  • and take the Oath of Admission and sign the attorney’s roll.
  • To sit for the New Jersey bar examination, candidates must:

  • be at least 18 years of age, have earned a Juris Doctor from an ABA accredited law school, and be in good standing in all jurisdictions to which they have been admitted . Please refer to the New Jersey Board of Bar Examiners websire for more information.
  • Starting the process in New Jersey. Applicants must create an account on-line. The link to register/log in is located on the top right hand side of the home page of the web site. Once you have registered, you will receive an activation email from Make sure you check your spam folder and/or permit emails from After you have activated your account and if the application period has been opened, you can begin an application.

    This is an on-line process. Applicants must register on-line. The following must be submitted:

  • Payment credit card, money order or certified check
  • One Page signed and notarized application
  • One page signed and notarized authorization and release form
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    Bar Exam Application Procedure

    Having planned for your bar exam prep completion, you come across question number six: How to register for bar exam?

    First, google for relevant bar examination board of your selected state, such as the New York State Board of Law Examiners. Some bar exam parts apply to virtually any US bar exam.

    Second, choose a bar exam filing period: either April for a July exam or November for a February exam.

    Third, read all application instructions carefully. The NY board website, for example, contains comprehensive information on how to apply for bar exam. You can get all application forms online. Just go to and, on the left-side menu, click Forms.

    Fourth, consider how to complete and submit your online application to sit for the bar exam.

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