Admissions Question: May 10
May 10, 2015
Q: I know that in order to practice law I will have to take the bar exam. What happens if I go to school in Oregon, but want to practice in another state?
A: You can go to school anywhere in the U.S. and still be eligible to take any state’s bar exam as long as you have attended an ABA-accredited law school. There are at least a couple of states where you can still take the bar exam even if you didn’t attend an ABA-accredited law school, but the vast majority of states have this as a requirement (including Oregon).
This means that you have the liberty to attend law school in a state other than the one in which you would like to practice. At Lewis & Clark Law School, a lot of students choose to take the bar exam in other states. Even some bar exam prep companies hold their classes for the Oregon, California, and Washington state exams at Lewis & Clark to make it more convenient for graduating students.
If you know you want to practice in another state, we recommend that you speak with the Registrar’s Office at your law school. Most will have a list of common subjects covered on each state’s bar exam. This way, you’ll know what courses you might want to take while in law school which could help you on the exam. Because bar exams cover common, substantive areas of the law, every law school should be offering courses that would be on any state bar exam. For example, almost all first year classes (Contracts, Civil Procedure, Torts, etc.) are areas that will possibly be tested on the bar exam. Not all courses you take in law school will be subjects tested on the bar exam though, and most students study for the bar by also signing up for bar prep courses. These are offered a few weeks before the bar exam itself. You may also want to check the website of the state bar association where you plan to practice to see if they have any additional information about their particular exam.