The New York State Board of Law Examiners ,Corporate Plaza, Building 3 – 254 Washington Avenue Extension Albany, NY 12203-5195

 
office (518) 453-5990
fax (518) 452-5729
TTY: Call 711 (nyrelay.com)
Phone Hours: Monday - Friday 8:45am – 4:45pm Eastern Time

The New York State Board of Law Examiners

Operating under the auspices of the New York State Court of Appeals, the New York State Board of LawPicture of NYS Court of Appeals Examiners is responsible for administering the bar examination to candidates seeking admission to practice law in the State of New York.

The Board has been in existence for over a hundred years, having been created by the New York State Legislature in 1894.
Its five members are attorneys appointed by the Court of Appeals. The Board maintains a business office in Albany, New York with a full-time staff that oversees the bar examination.

The bar examination is administered twice per year, on the last Tuesday and Wednesday of February and July. In 2019, the Board processed 15,736 applications for the bar examination and examined 14,200 applicants.


NOTICES:

NEW October 26, 2020

FEBRUARY 2021 BAR EXAMINATION

The New York Court of Appeals announced on October 21, 2020 that because the threat posed by the pandemic has not abated sufficiently to conduct in-person testing of large numbers of applicants the Court has determined that New York will administer a remote bar exam in February 2021. Click here to access the announcement issued by the Court of Appeals.

The February 2021 exam will be composed of all components of the Uniform Bar Examination (UBE) and will provide candidates with a portable score that can be transferred to other UBE jurisdictions. While the administration of the October 2020 remote exam was very successful, it included a limited set of questions that together comprised half of the sessions for a full UBE. The Board is mindful of the challenges posed by a large potential pool of test takers for the first full remote UBE, including the impact a large number of test-takers for the February 2021 bar exam would have on the Board's ability to adequately prepare for the July 2021 exam administration.

Accordingly, in order to provide for a safe and secure administration of the February 2021 examination, registration will proceed on a rolling basis.
The first application filing period will take place from November 1 - 15, 2020 (all applications must be completed and fully submitted by 11:59 PM ET):

Eligibility Requirements for the First Application Filing Period:
  1. First-time Juris Doctor candidates who (1) graduated from an ABA-approved law school in the United States in 2020, who will graduate in January or February 2021, or who are eligible as Pro Bono Scholars, and (2) who did not take any bar examination (in person or remotely) in any U.S. state, district or territory during 2020.

  2. Juris Doctor candidates who (1) graduated from an ABA-approved law school in the United States between 2016 and 2020 and (2) who sat for at least one prior bar exam in New York between July 2016 and February 2020.
After the first application filing period closes, there will be a short pause in the process and the application numbers will be assessed. A second application filing period will then open.

For those Juris Doctor candidates who took the October 2020 remote exam in New York and are unsuccessful, see “NOTICE TO CANDIDATES WHO TOOK THE OCTOBER 2020 REMOTE EXAM” below.

NOTICE TO CANDIDATES SEEKING TEST ACCOMMODATIONS ON THE FEBRUARY 2021 EXAM

Individuals with disabilities who are permitted to apply for the February 2021 remote examination and who wish to apply for non-standard test accommodations must submit an Application/Re-Application for Test Accommodations with all supporting documentation on or before Monday, November 30, 2020. Please consult the Test Accommodations page on the Board’s website for more information. https://www.nybarexam.org/ADA/ADA.htm.


NOTICE TO CANDIDATES WHO TOOK THE OCTOBER 2020 REMOTE EXAM

Because an in person administration of the UBE cannot be resumed in February 2021, candidates who are unsuccessful on the October 2020 remote exam will be eligible to apply for the February 2021 exam only if they took the New York remote exam and are Juris Doctor candidates. These unsuccessful Juris Doctor candidates will have an abbreviated filing period to re-apply, which will be outlined at the time the Board releases the results. All Applications/Re-applications for Test Accommodations for the February 2021 exam by such unsuccessful Juris Doctor candidates, with any supporting documentation, will also need to be submitted within this abbreviated filing period.

RECIPROCITY FOR THE TRANSFER OF SCORES EARNED ON THE REMOTE BAR ADMISSION EXAMINATION ON OCTOBER 5-6, 2020:

The New York State Board of Law Examiners has entered into reciprocity agreements to permit candidates to transfer scores earned on the remote bar admission examination that was administered on October 5-6, 2020. The Board has entered into reciprocity agreements with the following jurisdictions: Connecticut, District of Columbia, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon, Tennessee and Vermont. A score off 266 or greater is required in order to transfer the score to New York.

The following candidates will be eligible to transfer a score earned on the remote exam in a reciprocal jurisdiction: 

1) Any candidate who graduated from an ABA-approved law school with a J.D. degree and who has not previously sat for a bar exam in any U.S. jurisdiction;

2) Any foreign educated candidate who graduated from an ABA-approved law school with an LL.M. degree and who has not previously sat for a bar exam in any U.S. jurisdiction;

3) Any candidate who graduated in 2018 with a J.D. degree from an ABA-approved law school and who sat for one prior administration of the UBE but who has not sat for more than one prior bar exam in any U.S. jurisdiction; and

4) Any candidate who graduated in 2019 or later with a J.D. degree from an ABA approved law school and who previously took the UBE and failed no more than two times.

Transferred scores will not be accepted from candidates who do not meet one of the aforementioned criteria

NEW YORK LAW EXAM

The results from the September 24, 2020 NYLE have been posted to candidates’ BOLE Accounts. To access the exam results, log in to your account in the Applicant Services Portal using your email address and password and navigate to the NYLE section within the portal.

The next administration of the NYLE is on December 17, 2020 at 12:00 pm Eastern. The deadline to complete the New York Law Course and register for the March NYLE is November 17, 2020 at 11:59 PM. Applicants who timely register with the Board to take the NYLE must also timely purchase, download and register the software with Examsoft. Examsoft will email applicants a few weeks before the date of the NYLE with all pertinent details and deadlines.  Click here for future dates of the NYLE.

REPORT OF THE IMPACT OF THE UNIFORM BAR EXAMINATION IN NEW YORK

The New York Court of Appeals announced on August 20, 2019 the release of the Study of the Impact of Adoption of the Uniform Bar Examination in New York. Click here to access the Press Release, Executive Summary, the Report and the Appendices.

NOTICE TO CANDIDATES WHO HAVE PREVIOUSLY WITHDRAWN OR FAILED TO APPEAR FOR THE BAR EXAM

Candidates with multiple withdrawals may apply for a future exam, without first petitioning the Board. However, if the candidate withdraws or fails to appear, the Board may then, in its discretion, require the candidate to petition the Board before applying for a subsequent exam. See Board Rule 6000.9(b)(3) and the Bar Exam Information Guide.

DEADLINE TO SUBMIT SUPPORTING FOREIGN DOCUMENTATION FOR REVIEW

  • July Bar Exam – To meet the six-month deadline for review of your documents, you must submit your Foreign Evaluation Form and supporting foreign documentation no later than October 1st of the year preceding the exam you plan to sit.
  • February Exam –To meet the six-month deadline for review of your documents, you must submit your Foreign Evaluation Form and supporting documentation no later than May 1st of the year preceding the exam you plan to sit. LLM applicants who fail to meet these deadlines run the risk that they may not receive a decision from the Board on their eligibility in time to take the exam, causing the application to be denied and the application fee to be forfeited. 

LLM applicants who fail to meet these deadlines run the risk that they may not receive a decision from the Board on their eligibility in time to take the exam, causing the application to be denied and the application fee to be forfeited.


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