July 2017 washington dc bar exam results

Why Is the DC Bar Exam Getting More Popular?

The DC bar exam is becoming increasingly popular. This is despite the fact that passages rates for DC are not above normal. This is also despite the fact that many of the students taking the DC bar exam do not necessarily want to practice law in DC.

What is driving both new and seasoned attorneys to the DC bar exam? Why is it becoming increasingly popular each year?

Check the post below to see why!

Why Is the DC Bar Exam Getting More Popular?

Here are some of the many reasons that the DC bar exam is getting more and more popular:

1. DC has fewer restriction for who can sit for the bar exam.

DC is one of the few jurisdictions that allows those who attended law school online or through correspondence to sit for the bar exam.  An applicant can sit for the DC bar exam as long they completed twenty-six (26) semester hours of study in the subjects tested on the DC bar exam at an ABA-approved law school.

Thus, many of these students head to DC to take the bar exam. They simply do not have many other options.

2. DC has a Motion without Examination option.

Another reason DC is becoming more appealing to applicants is due to DC’s Motion without Examination option.  Those licensed in other jurisdictions utilize this option because they can apply for admittance without retaking the bar exam.  An applicant is eligible for via motion so long as they:

  1. Scored 133 or high on the MBE, and  75 or higher on the MPRE.
  2. Provide a certificate of Good Standing from each jurisdiction they were admitted to.
  3. Completed a Law School Certification Form demonstrating that the applicant received a J.D. or LL.B. degree from a law school-approved by the ABA. If the applicant graduated from a law school not approved by the ABA, the applicant must completed at least twenty-six (26) hours of study at an ABA-approved law school.
  4. Submit a completed NCBE character and fitness application.

3. Previous UBE takers can apply for submission providing they scored 266 or higher.

Lastly, if an applicant scored 266 or higher on the UBE, they can apply for admission to the DC bar.  As of March 2016, DC allows for admission based on a transferred UBE score. However,  the minimum score for this method is 266. The test also must have been taken within the last five (5) years.  In this situation, the applicant still has to provide a Law School Certification Form described above. An applicant also needs qualifying MPRE score of 75 or higher. They also need to provide a completed NCBE character and fitness application.

4. Applicants who are NOT licensed in a jurisdiction, but receive a 133 on the MBE can only take the written portion of the DC bar exam.

We see a lot of students who are from states with high requirements to pass the bar exam (i.e. Virginia, which requires a 140 or other difficult states) simply transfer their MBE score to DC so they only have to take the written portion. This is making the DC bar exam VERY popular as most students hate to take the MBE more than any other portion of the bar exam.

An applicant who received an MBE scaled score of 133 or higher on a prior MBE (taken within 25 months of the present exam) may waive in the MBE score and take only the essay exam. An essay score of 133 will then be required to pass the DC Bar Exam.

An applicant who received a scaled essay score of 133 or higher on a prior DC Bar Exam (again, taken within 25 months of the present exam) may waive in the essay score and take only the MBE. A scaled score of 133 will be required to pass the DC exam. Remember you can take the DC five times before having to get permission to take it again.

*Please verify that all of this information is accurate with the DC bar exam prior to relying on it, as their page will be the most updated!