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Andrew

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Taking Two Bar Exams
« on: November 16, 2004, 05:24:31 PM »
This thread is for discussing my article: Taking Two Bar Exams.  Please read the article before posting here.  If you have a question or comment that's not directly related to the article, please start a new thread.

Here's the link to the article.

Wild Jack Maverick

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Re: Taking Two Bar Exams
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2004, 04:14:03 PM »
Whatever happened to 'specialization?'

The six areas tested by the MBE are required courses of practically every law school. No sweat.

 The state IEE (essay) requires knowledge of nine other areas which are not required courses. Learning the material for fifteen subjects and the MPRE and MPT will almost certainly require the entire 3 years of law school. It seems as if the exams designate the 'electives' which you must choose if you want to pass and become licensed. I guess specialization is for post-grads.

I can't imagine studying for more than one state bar exam at the same time!

"I enjoy being in school. I've learned so much already, with taking economics and law, and I have marketing and statistics coming up next."

Andrew

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Re: Taking Two Bar Exams
« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2004, 05:13:20 PM »
I can understand how fear of the bar exam could dictate which classes one takes in law school.  I've heard advice on both ends of the spectrum there.  I divided my time between bar-helpful classes and "interesting" classes, and I'm pretty happy with that choice.

I think you could probably pass the bar without taking any bar helpful electives (a big part of the MA and NY bar exams are first year required classes), but of course it never hurts to start preparing early.  Some classes are more valuable than others when it comes to bar preparation of course.  I took UCC and only later learned that it has a very low probability of being on the NY bar, and is never on the MA bar.  Meanwhile, I didn't get around to taking Criminal Procedure, which is a very important topic for any bar.

If I were a 1L planning my law school electives, I would look up the subjects and probabilities for the exam(s) before choosing.  I think there's enough time to take the most imporant bar-related classes and still specialize.

Wild Jack Maverick

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Re: Taking Two Bar Exams
« Reply #3 on: November 20, 2004, 11:40:49 AM »
Well, that is some good news, but I am really cautious. I know some practicing attorneys who obviously passed the bar, and I know some other people who have taken the bar multiple times without success. I am guessing that the courses really matter.

I can possibly 'get by' without some of the credit courses because also I do independent study and am involved with some of the same suggested areas which are required for the state bar, such as taxation. And since my undergrad majors are CJ and Paralegal, I am sure to already know much of the material. I've already studied Crim.Pro and Crim. Law, and will probably have Crim Law again in law school. When I looked at the MBE book earlier this year, that was my strongest subject. Another big plus is that many areas 'co-exist'--some of what you learn in one course is included in other courses, such as business law and contract law, or procedure and litigation and legal research.

And there are some subjects which I was considering as possible law school courses, anyway, such as Business Associations and Administrative Law, so I am not totally disappointed.
But the other side of that is there are some subjects on the state bar which I am not fond of; for instance, I would rather not have another course of Family Law.

But I think you are right: I already know what to expect on the MBE-- I need to find more specific information about the state bar essay test.
"I enjoy being in school. I've learned so much already, with taking economics and law, and I have marketing and statistics coming up next."

Andrew

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Re: Taking Two Bar Exams
« Reply #4 on: November 22, 2004, 11:50:37 AM »
Just check the probabilities.  I don't know off-hand of a resource for this, but BarBri gave me the stats for NY (anyone know some links?).  There are some things that weren't even tested on the exams I took that I thought were important in law school because my school emphasized them.  For example, Administrative Law is not on either the New York or Massachusetts exams, but my school had some famous admin profs and they made it sounds like a "must take" (a valuable class, but most classes are).

I guess what I'm saying is that I would recommending getting more info an a particular bar and prioritizing.  In my case - UCC wasn't any help on the bar, but Trusts, Wills, & Estates and Corporations were good to have taken.

Wild Jack Maverick

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Re: Taking Two Bar Exams
« Reply #5 on: November 22, 2004, 05:48:21 PM »
I think it is well worth my time to research this. The more I look, the more I find. As of now I have three online sources which agree that Admin. Law is one of the subjects on the state bar (IN). Only one of the three sources says that Contracts is another one of the subjects, but Contracts is also on the MBE, and is usually one of the required courses.

The sources also word the subjects differently, such as one says business organizations, the others say partnerships and corporations. One of them says agencies, and the other two do not mention it.


I must admire you. I have read that the NY bar is much more difficult.

I have already used a few hours looking at the curriculums of the IN area's law schools, but I will probably look at them again now in a different way.
I guess I should find some who have recently passed the IN bar and ask them.
"I enjoy being in school. I've learned so much already, with taking economics and law, and I have marketing and statistics coming up next."

NYCLawyer

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Re: Taking Two Bar Exams
« Reply #6 on: January 15, 2005, 12:42:51 AM »
You might want to read the threads over at JdJive.com

The bar exam is hard to pass not because of bad class choices in law school, but because of poor test taking skills and time management during the actual exam.


Esq

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Re: Taking Two Bar Exams
« Reply #7 on: January 15, 2005, 09:40:45 AM »
If you want to find out what essay subjects are covered on a state bar exam, you can go to the Barbri website (www.barbri.com) and select the state that interests you.  For Indiana, the following topics are covered on the essays

Indiana Essay Subjects
Administrative Law, Agency, Commercial Law, Indiana Constitutional Law, Corporations, Family Law, Partnerships, Personal Property, Pleading and Practice, Taxation, Trusts & Estates, Wills

I would take several of these courses while in law school. It is probably not necessary to take all of them, but Barbri goes very fast. Barbri is really a "review." I never really bought into the "Barbri will teach you everything you need to know for the bar" line.  Barbri gives you three sets of outlines for each course. There is a big outline that is very detailed.  These outlines usually are 60 to 100 pages long.  They also give you a Conviser outline that is condensed down to around 20 pages.  They also give you the "fill in the blank" outlines for the lectures. Some people who haven't had the course in law school study from the big outline because it has examples and fact patterns in it. These examples help you to learn the material because you are probably encountering it for the first time. If you had the course in law school, you can generally study from the Conviser, or even the fill in the blank outline. These go much faster. The time you save allows you to spend more time on the MBE.

marymac

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Re: Taking Two Bar Exams
« Reply #8 on: July 25, 2006, 01:23:59 PM »
Hey! Does anyone know where I can find out if it's possible to take the Bar in both GA and NC? I've been looking online at the NC State Bar website, the GA State Bar website, the ABA website, various other websites... and I can't find any kind of straight answer. The reciprocity information just says that it "varies" I'm totally confused. Is there a nice, uncomplicated website that I can look at to figure this out?

dmitrik4

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Re: Taking Two Bar Exams
« Reply #9 on: July 28, 2006, 04:11:27 PM »
taking two bar exams is not that bad, and it's not uncommon; i just did it (PA & NJ), along with most people i know.  traveling to north jersey from philly on wednesday wasn't fun (thanks, NJ!), but then entire experience from may-july isn't exactly a vacation.

it helped that the NJ bar is not too difficult.  the girl next to me in the NJ exam had just taken the Delaware exam (a three-day exam from Mon-Wed), so it could have been worse.

the PA bar subjects are:

MBE Subjects

Constitutional Law
Contracts/Sales
Criminal Law/Procedure
Evidence
Real Property
Torts

Pennsylvania Essay Subjects

Civil Procedure (State & Federal)
Conflict of Laws
PA Constitutional Law (Rights of the Criminally Accused)
Corporations
Decedents' Estates
Family Law
Federal Personal Income Tax
PA Evidence
PA Rules of Professional Conduct
Sales
Employment Discrimination (Title VII, ADA and ADEA)
Partnerships
Limited Liability Companies and Professional Corporations
Wills
Trusts
PA DUI Law
plus all MBE subjects

plus the PA Performance Test (which this year was a client letter on an ADEA claim).

so that's a lot of subjects, but not impossible.  i took NJ b/c you can't waive in later and i didn't want to be taking it in 10+ years like some of the firm attorneys and partners i saw there.

it really depends on whether a second bar admission is going to be useful to you.  i honestly do not believe that taking a second bar exam adds a whole lot to your preparation commitment.  i wouldn't say to do it for kicks, but if it will help your career, don't be afraid to take it on.

the biggest thing is to study and work steadily from the beginning; don't blow off late may and june.  the people who do that are either brilliant or are freaking out in mid-july, and you do NOT want to be freaking out.  the bar tests minimal competence; if you put in honest work in preparing and stay calm during the exam, you should be fine.  go to class, then spend solid, quality time studying.  maintain and schedule some personal relaxation time as well, or you will burn out.

and consider the video lectures; they're not any different than the live lectures, and you don't have to worry about offending a lecturer during a particularly boring session.