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Why You're Glad You Took the U.S. Bar Exam

By Neetal Parekh | Last updated on
Changing leaves, holiday music, and nippy weather aren't the only notable features of Fall.  It 'tis also the season for Bar exam results.  And if you took the July 2009 edition of the exam in Florida, Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, South Carolina, Tennessee, or Texas to name a few...for better or for worse, you are in the know.  And for those still 'lying in wait' for the outcome of the post-law school trial, hang tight, in just a few short days or weeks you'll know whether the Bar exam chapter of your law diaries ends with "happily ever after" or "to be continued..."

Becoming certified to practice law in the U.S. usually involves three years of rigorous study.  Followed by a month of studying, sleepless nights, hyper-caffeination, and maybe even a little premature hair loss. And it all leads up to to a multi-hour or multi-day exam which tolls more of the same.  And the initial reward for finishing?  A three-month long wait. 

You might think we have it tough in the U.S., but before you pack up your bags (and law books) and ship off to greener law pastures abroad, there might be a thing or two to be thankful for...

Why You're Glad You Took a Bar Exam in the U.S. :

  • You didn't have to be among the 85% of Brazilians who regularly fail their country's exam
  • You don't have to know the difference between a barrister or solicitor.  And for the indecisive, you don't have to choose one path either, like you would have to in England.
  • You can sidestep answering questions like this one from the Scottish Bar Exam:

  • You don't have to be in 'exam mode' for 10 weeks, like you would be in Ireland. 
  • You don't have to wait until next year to try again, like you would have to in the Philippines.  (And you won't be 'taxed' to prove your knowledge of Tax Law as you would be there, either.)
Good luck to Bar examinees, pass or otherwise, there's something (in four letters and more) to be said about that strangely unique and surprisingly unifying journey of taking a Bar Exam in the U.S. 

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