Rhode Island Bar Exam

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Rhode Island Board of Bar Examiners

Clerk, Supreme Court
Providence County Courthouse
250 Benefit Street
Providence, RI 02903

Telephone: (401) 222-4233

Email: ribarexam@courts.ri.gov

Website: www.courts.ri.gov


BAR EXAM FORMAT

The Rhode Island Bar Exam is a 2 day exam.

Day 1: The local day consists of 1 Multistate Performance Test (MPT) question, 3 Rhode Island essay questions, and 6 Multistate Essay Exam (MEE) questions.

Day 2: Multistate Bar Exam (MBE), a 200-question, mutiple choice exam.


SUBJECTS TESTED


MBE Subjects: 

  • Constitutional Law
  • Contracts/Sales
  • Criminal Law/Procedure
  • Evidence
  • Real Property
  • Torts

Rhode Island Essay Subjects:

  • Agency
  • Commercial Paper
  • Conflict of Laws
  • Corporations
  • Creditors’ Rights
  • Domestic Relations
  • Equity
  • Partnerships
  • RI Practice & Procedure
  • Secured Transactions
  • Trusts
  • Wills
  • Federal Jurisdiction
  • plus all MBE subjects

Multistate Performance Test: 

“Closed universe” practical problem using instructions, factual data, cases, statutes and other reference material supplied by examiners.


BAR EXAM DATES

The Rhode Island Bar Exam is administered on the last Tuesday and Wednesday in February and July.

2014 Winter:  February 25 and 26

2014 Summer: July 29 and 30


FILING FEES AND DEADLINES

February Exam: POSTMARKED by Dec. 1. No extensions.
July Exam: POSTMARKED by May 1. No extensions.

Exam fee: $450 (non-attorneys); $800 (attorneys)


BAR EXAM FILING ADVICE

Take Appropriate Steps To Ensure Timely Delivery: Your application is one of thousands that will be sent to the same office address. Use Certified Mail with Return Receipt Requested or other appropriate verifiable means (e.g., FedEx, UPS) when sending all correspondence to the bar examiners so that you have proof regarding when your application was postmarked, when it arrived and who received it.  Check with the state bar examiner’s office before sending your application regarding what types of delivery they will accept.

Payment:  Application fees are generally non-refundable. Verify acceptable forms of payment with your state (i.e., no personal checks).  If you apply to take the bar exam, pay all fees and subsequently withdraw, you must contact the Bar Examiners. You may have to submit a new application, a new filing fee and new copies of related documents in order to sit for the exam at a future date.

Employment History:  Many states’ bar applications require information regarding your past employment since the age of 18 (i.e., name and address of employer, reason for leaving). Begin compiling a list of employers and their current addresses so that you have this information for your application.

Character References:  Many states’ bar applications require a list of persons who can attest to your good character. Begin compiling a list of non-relatives who have known you for at least two (2) years who can vouch for your integrity.

Driver Abstracts:  Some bar applications require you to produce a Driver’s Abstract from all states in which you were licenced to drive. Contact the Division of Motor Vehicles in each state and request the most complete abstract of your driving record that is available.

Fingerprints:  In some states you must submit your fingerprints on a special card with your exam application.   Have your fingerprints rolled by a professional law enforcement officer onto the forms provided by the bar examiners.


GRADING AND RESULTS

A scaled score of 130 on the MBE is required to pass. The scaled scores of the MBE, MPT and essays are combined to determine if applicant has achieved a passing score of 276. Results are generally released in mid-May for February exam and mid-October for July exam.


RECIPROCITY

Admission on Motion
Rhode Island does not provide for admission on motion. Examination is required of all applicants. If an attorney has practiced 5 out of the 10 years immediately preceding application, only the Rhode Island essay exam and MPT portion of the exam is required. (This format requires a scaled score of 138 to pass.)

Acceptance of MBE Score
Applicant may transfer MBE scaled score from concurrent exam only.

Miscellaneous
Applicants must complete a training course offered by the Rhode Island Bar for admission.


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