Applying to law school > Law School Applications

Will a past history of depression cause me trouble for Character and Fitness?

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livinglegend:
Yes I also think a state bar would legally have a tough time preventing you from practicing law based on you receiving professional treatment. It sounds like you had a problem and you treated it, which the state bar should be encouraging.

I truly think the only way something like this could get you in trouble is if you lie about it. Lying to the State Bar can get you in trouble, but being candid and telling them when you were 17 you had depression issues and received treatment should not be something that bars you from the practice of law. I imagine if it comes to that you could have a lawsuit on your hands so just be honest and disclose.

eric922:
Thanks for all the advice guys. I feel a lot better about it now.  I don't know if law school applications ask about mental health history or not, but if they do I'll be sure to disclose it and I'll certainly disclose it during the character and fitness portion when applying for the Bar.

Groundhog:
I don't think most law school applications ask about that. And, at least for CA, the state bar questionnaire asks about fitness to practice law. I'd be extremely surprised if, absent other circumstances, a history of depression alone caused any eyebrow raising at the moral character and fitness committee. A recent DUI, on the other hand...

eric922:

--- Quote from: Groundhog on December 09, 2012, 12:33:16 AM ---I don't think most law school applications ask about that. And, at least for CA, the state bar questionnaire asks about fitness to practice law. I'd be extremely surprised if, absent other circumstances, a history of depression alone caused any eyebrow raising at the moral character and fitness committee. A recent DUI, on the other hand...

--- End quote ---
To be frankly honest I would be shocked as well.  I mean attempted suicide is a big deal, but given the circumstances and the amount of time that will have passed without any mental health problems I can't imagine how any state bar would decide a decade old incident would make me unfit to currently practice law.  To me that would be extremely, well, unjust.

livinglegend:
The California Bar Moral Character application does ask about any mental health treatment or diagnosis, but again I think the only way you can get in trouble is by not being candid. To get closure on this call your state bar and ask them. I remember being scared about a few moral character issues, but I simply called the bar and the person on the other line was very friendly and said I would be fine, but they know more than any anonymous internet poster.

Again good luck as you start law school.

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