What Happens After You Pass the Bar? A Guide to Successful Legal Careers
You’ve made it! You worked hard, studied, and built your test-taking skills. Now you can call yourself a lawyer. But what comes next? Arriving at the final stretch of your law school journey means that you’ll soon be facing some important decisions about your future. An obvious one is whether to take the bar exam and thus qualify to practice as a lawyer. For many students, the answer is “of course!” However, for others who have other plans or ambitions beyond becoming an attorney, that answer isn’t quite so obvious. If you’re reading this as an aspiring lawyer about to graduate from law school and not just as any random reader, we assume that you have already made the decision to take the bar exam once you finish law school. If not, perhaps this article will help you make up your mind about whether or
What Does Passing the Bar Mean?
The bar exam is a standardized test that’s used to determine whether someone is qualified to practice law in a particular jurisdiction. It includes two parts, the Multistate Bar Examination (MBE) and the essay questions specific to the jurisdiction in which the person wishes to be admitted to the bar. Once a person passes the bar exam, he or she is a “bar-certified” lawyer and may practice law in that jurisdiction. There are several key points to remember about the bar exam: The bar exam is a test of your aptitude for the practice of law. The questions are not about the knowledge you gained in your law school classes, but about how well you are able to apply the knowledge you acquired through your education. The exam is designed to test your ability to think on your feet, reason quickly, and solve problems in a wide range of circumstances. The bar exam isn’t just a series of multiple choice questions. It also includes a written component that asks you to analyze factual situations and apply them to a specific legal issue. And then there’s the essay component, which asks you to write a coherent essay on a complex legal topic. It’s a test unlike any you’ve taken before, and it requires a different kind of studying and preparation.
Should You Take the Bar Exam?
Taking the bar exam is not a decision to be taken lightly. It is a significant commitment, both financially and in terms of time, and it can be a difficult process for many. That said, there are several reasons you may want to take the bar exam. – You Have No Other Plans- This is perhaps the most obvious reason for taking the bar exam. If you have no other plans for life beyond becoming an attorney, it may make sense to take the bar exam. – You Want to Practice Law- If you want to practice law, taking the bar exam is the only way to do it. It’s important to remember that while you can be admitted to the bar without taking the bar exam, you cannot practice law without it. – You Have Admitted That You Are Not Good At Anything Else- If you have tried other things but have failed at them all, taking the bar exam may be your last hope of doing something in life. – You Have A Specific Plan You Want to Pursue- If you have a specific plan in mind that requires a specialized type of license (real estate, patent and trademark law, etc.), you will need to take the bar exam. – You Have Achieved a Level of Greatness That Cannot Be Ignored- If you have become a famous actor, author, musician, or politician, chances are you’ll be asked to take the bar exam.
Who Should Pass the Bar Exam?
Anyone who wants to practice law should take the bar exam. That’s the short answer. But that isn’t helpful! If you aren’t sure whether you should take the bar exam, here are a few reasons that may help you decide: – You Have Achieved a Level of Greatness That Cannot Be Ignored- If you have become a famous actor, author, musician, or politician, chances are you’ll be asked to take the bar exam. Think about it: you don’t become famous without being super smart. And if you want to continue doing what you love, the only way to do that is to be licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction in which you operate. – You Have Admitted That You Are Not Good At Anything Else- If you have tried other things but have failed at them all, taking the bar exam may be your last hope of doing something in life. You have failed at everything, but you want to keep living the over-privileged life you’re used to. Bar exam: you’re the only thing standing between you and a menial job that pays bills.
Bottom line: Should you take the bar exam?
The short answer is yes. The long answer is also yes. It is an important decision, and it is one that you should approach thoughtfully. Most importantly, you should be sure that this is an exam you want to take. You should be equally sure that you are ready to become a lawyer. Not all law school graduates become practicing attorneys, so don’t feel pressured to take the bar exam if it isn’t the right path for you. Bar exam or not, you still have a bright future ahead.