Law Students > Online Law Schools

How does This Work?

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Ok please no one take offense I am purely curious.  I didn't know that you could get your law degree online... and further that it won't be honored by the American Bar Association.  That being said, how the heck do you practice law if the ABA which is the governing institution for allowing an individual to legally practice law... does not honor your school?

We discussed this topic a bit in the following thread:,3288.15.html

Basically, in some states you don't have to go to an ABA school.  At the top of the list is California, which (I think) is the main state that will allow you to take the bar after taking the baby bar and graduating from a non-ABA approved school.

States where you can take the bar without having graduated from a non-ABA school according to the thread above include: Mass, NH, VT, W-VA, Alabama, Tenn and Georgia.  I think for some of these states you had to graduate from specific non-ABA schools that are approved by the state bar.

All in all your choices are very limited, but they are there.

Wild Jack Maverick:
California has most or all of the United States DL law schools. The requirement to practice law in California (and some other states) is that the law schools must be approved or accredited by the  State Bar, not the ABA. However, the students are required to register with the state bar and make various appearances in California.

After practicing law for maybe 5 or 7 years, a lawyer might "grandfather" into another state.

There are various options for attaining a license to practice:
A few states allow apprenticeships instead of law school--after a few years of apprenticeship at a law firm, the applicant must pass the bar. I have also read somewhere that some states require either ABA accreditation or the approval of the state supreme court.

There are also a few who study law through international DL law schools, then make up the difference at an ABA school, those of which usually require an additional 2 years for the JD. (Doesn't seem as if it would make sense to study law 6 years for a 3 year degree.)

Non ABA schools are a waste of time and money.  True you can practice in California but you have to pass 2 bars (baby bar and normal) and the pass rates are terrible.  Even if you do pass good luck getting a job as its considered a fake law degree to most people.  If you were hiring would you hire someone from a school recognized by the ABA or take someone who couldnt get into the worst of the worst.

The most you could hope for is a paralegal job.


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