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Messages - jonlevy

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301
Licensed attorneys take an abbreviated version of the Cal bar and routinely do worse than first time takers. My theory is that increased alcohol and drug consumption is a factor in the lower than expected pass rate:

The pass rate for the 396 lawyers who took the attorneys’ exam was 34.6 percent, a decline from last year’s 41.6 percent pass rate. Of those who took the attorneys’ exam, 26 were disciplined lawyers who took the test as a condition of reinstatement. Four passed. The attorneys’ examination is open to lawyers who have been admitted to the active practice of law in good standing for at least four years in another United States jurisdiction.

http://www.calbarjournal.com/December2011/TopHeadlines/TH6.aspx

302
The non ABA grads are in an inferior position per se because they cannot forum shop for an easier bar to take. 

303
California is not that hard?  Look at the data.  I'm not saying other places like DC and Nevada don't have difficult bar exams as well, but California's must be much harder than average.  (Even the format is very different)
http://blurblawg.typepad.com/.a/6a00e54f871a9c88330168e56bcf99970c-pi

maybe the Cal bar is an anomoly.  The standard answer is either the format is difficult or non ABA takers drag down the average pass rate by 10-20%.  However, until other states allow non ABA degree holders to take their exams, we won't know the answer.  Personally, I think it is neither, California wants about a 50% pass rate and adjusts its grading accordingly.  If the pass rate was 80%, California would be flooded with new lawyers. Protectionism pure and simple which is why California also keeps out of state attorneys from motioning into to both the state bar and US District Courts there.


304
DC has an equal or higher fail rate than California and those are almost all ABA takers.  The bar exams are actually not that different statewide, I believe the high fail rate has to do in part with differing grading rubrics. Illinois on the other hand has a high pass rate, is the bar exam easier?  I doubt it but the grading sure is.

Almost everyone takes a state specific bar review course so there should be no surprises on the exams.

. Keeping in mind that CA has the toughest bar exam in the nation...

Why?  Because so many people fail?  You don't think the fact that so many people fail has something to do with the fact that virtually every other state requires ABA accreditation?

http://www.protectconsumerjustice.org/california-bar-exam-pass-rates-by-law-school.html

Seems like the bar passage rates for most of the schools in CA is 80% or higher. 

This red herring that California has the hardest bar exam simply because so many people fail it doesn't really bear scrutiny.

The reality is that California lets a whole lot of people sit for the bar exam who are grossly unqualified in most other states.

A few of them pass, and that's great.  But let's not delude ourselves into thinking that so many fail because the bar exam is so much harder.  It's far more likely that so many fail because they shouldn't be sitting for the bar exam in the first place and in most other states, they wouldn't be allowed to.

305
Those are interesting stats on the FYLSE, good old fashioned correspondence beats out online and fixed facility in the pass rates.  My theory is that no amount of tech or classroom can compensate for lack of rote memorization for these students.

306
I doubt there is any ill intent, but you probably should not  put individuals names i.e. the prosecutor on this board without their consent they might not appreciate being dragged into this debate unknowingly and having their name pop up in a google search.

A Prosecutor is a public official and the links are to news stories.  Their stories are germaine in that one would not necessarily want to sweat out 4 years of  law school and then try to get a job in those high risk podunk counties even if one could. They play for keeps in those places, this is nothing new. Anyone who has worked in a small rural California county could tell worse stories.

307
I think Concord's marketing practices may be the issue.  Unlike the other distance learning law schools, Concord has a big PR budget.  They have to trumpet something.  I always found amusing their press releases about how their grads were the first "online" students admitted to the US Supreme Court Bar when any attorney with 5 years practice who has a clean record and can get two USSC bar members to nominate him or her is guaranteed admission. And you are correct there is a world of difference between CBA school and an unaccredited distance learning school.

Despite all the blather, Concord is registered with the Cal bar just like Taft or any other distance learning school.

http://info.concordlawschool.edu/pages/accreditation.aspx

Now if Concord had California Bar accredidation that would be something.

308
Washington Post  is the parent company of Concord and Kaplan and does a very good job at PR that much is clear.  However, it is unrealistic to think that online grads are going to be able to compete in the job market.  They are limited to a California license which would disqualify them from most if not all big law jobs.  Most federal and state government job descriptions require an ABA degree.  As for Butte County, LOL, if you are willing to go to Oroville or Del Norte or Modoc counties anything is possible.  Del Norte let me do Pelican Bay PD cases within a few months of passing the bar with a Taft degree but that was the good old days.  However, the current DA of Del Norte is a former meth addict, has been suspended from the bar in the past and is facing disbarment proceedings, so anything is possible there.  The previous DA is also facing drug charges

http://www.courthousenews.com/2012/07/18/48476.htm

http://www.times-standard.com/localnews/ci_20888756/trial-dates-set-state-bar-case-against-del

The point is that an online law degree can work but it is not a good way to get a job hire in law.  Concord is one of the best online schools but even all the honors in the world there will produce an attorney who is at a handicap in the job market.

Are online grads better, I like to think so, but in reality they are just different and employers don't like non conformists.  A Uriah Heep with an ABA degree from a  tirr one or two school will get the job not the online grad.


309
But having said all that with an online degree you can also be admitted to numerous federal courts (but only a minority of US District courts due to local bar membership requirements) and England, Ireland, and with the right connections some of the British overseas territories.  vast majority of online grads, my estimate is 90% hold only the california license but may reside elsewhere.  I've been out of California for 15 years but still keep my license current there.

310
And the DC bar motion in is only by a quirk of law when the mandatory bar was set up in 1970, if it was up to the local DC bar I am sure they too would exclude online grads.

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