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MCLE Self-Assessment Test

42.2 percent pass the February bar exam

Just over 42 percent of the would-be lawyers who took the February bar exam passed, the Committee of Bar Examiners announced last month. If the 1,849 successful test-takers satisfy other requirements for admission, they will join the bar, pushing the number of California lawyers past the 238,000 mark.

Of the 4,382 applicants who took the exam, 33 percent were first-time takers. They held a passing rate of 53 percent, compared to a 37 percent success rate for repeaters.

The committee also announced that 201 (45.9 percent) of the 438 lawyers who took the attorneys’ exam passed. Of those, 25 were disciplined lawyers who took the examination as a condition of reinstatement; just six passed.

The attorneys’ exam is open to lawyers who have been admitted to the active practice of law in good standing for at least four years in another U.S. jurisdiction.

Successful applicants who have satisfied other requirements for admission – those who have not been reported by local district attorneys for being in arrears with family or child support payments, who have received a positive moral character determination and who have passed the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination – may either take the Attorney’s Oath individually or participate in admissions ceremonies held throughout the state during June 2012.