Paul L. Caron
Dean



Monday, May 4, 2020

July Bar Exam Update: Illinois, Iowa, Maryland, Missouri

CoronavirusIllinois Supreme Court Postpones Bar Exam Until September (court order):

The Illinois Supreme Court announced today that the Illinois bar exam, originally scheduled for July 28-29, 2020, has been rescheduled to September 9-10, 2020, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Chicago Tribune, Illinois Bar Exam Delayed, and Now Law Students Seeking Jobs and Path to Pay Off Loans Face Major Complications

Iowa Supreme Court Notice To Bar Applicants:

July 2020 Bar Exam Applicants:

  • The Iowa Board of Law Examiners still intends on administering the July 2020 Iowa Bar Examination as scheduled on July 27-29, 2020, at the Airport Holiday Inn in Des Moines.  We are working closely with the National Conference of Bar Examiners and monitoring state and local directives related to the COVID-19 pandemic to consistently evaluate whether administering the July exam as scheduled can be done safely. 
  • If the July 2020 bar examination cannot be administered as scheduled, the Iowa Board of Law Examiners intends to administer the Iowa Bar Examination on September 8-10, 2020.  Should a change occur, we will notify applicants via email and this website.

Maryland State Board of Bar Examiners (SBLE), To July 2020 Bar Exam Applicants:

The National Conference of Bar Examiners (NCBE) has announced that it will offer jurisdictions three opportunities to administer bar examinations  in Summer/Fall 2020.  See NCBE COVID-19 Announcement.

SBLE’s decision will be based on whether current social distancing and group gathering restrictions have been lifted or are reasonably expected to be lifted in time for a July exam administration. If SBLE determines that it cannot administer the UBE on July 28-29 as scheduled, SBLE will reschedule administration of the UBE for September 9 and 10 at one or more locations to be determined.

The filing deadline for the July 2020 UBE in Maryland remains Wednesday, May 20, 2020 at 4:30 p.m. To be considered a timely filing, SBLE must RECEIVE, by the deadline, the following materials: the applicant’s signed, hard-copy Notice of Intent; the applicant’s signed, hard-copy Character Questionnaire; the applicant’s official undergraduate transcript; and, the applicant’s check(s) or money order(s) for the applicable fees.  Character & fitness supporting documentation that can be obtained online (such as credit reports and, in some cases, official driving records) should accompany the applicant’s hard-copy filing.  Where COVID-19-related closures of courts, other government agencies, and/or businesses prevent applicants from obtaining required character & fitness documentation, applicants should include in their hard copy filing a separate, signed statement briefly describing their efforts to obtain the missing documentation and acknowledging their continuing duty to provide such missing documentation when available.

Missouri Board of Bar Examiners, Information about Bar Admissions and COVID-19 (court order, FAQ):

At this time, the Missouri bar exam is proceeding as scheduled on July 28 and 29, and the final application deadline remains June 1, 2020. In the event the bar exam cannot be administered in July, the exam will be held on September 9-10, 2020.

Pursuant to the authority provided in the Court’s order, the board is limiting the number of July 2020 exam applications that will be accepted for filing, effective April 30.  The Board will accept no more than 760 applications, and if the maximum number is reached prior to the June 1 application deadline, the registration period for the July 2020 exam will be closed.  At this time, the July 2020 exam registration period is open and the deadline remains June 1.  Applications properly filed on or after April 30 will be accepted in the order received, up to the maximum number, with priority afforded equally to Missouri residents, graduates of ABA-approved law schools located in Missouri or a contiguous state, licensed attorneys for an employer located in Missouri, and recipients of an offer of employment as a licensed attorney for an employer located in Missouri.  No application to retake the exam will be accepted for filing on or after April 30 if the applicant has sat for four or more prior administrations of the Missouri bar exam.

The board has secured additional testing venues to increase seating capacity in the event social distancing and mass gathering restrictions require modification to the July test administration.  The board will post a notice on  its website regarding the additional testing venues and notify individual examinees prior to the exam where they will be testing. 

The Court’s order also provides the board authority to further limit the number of examinees ultimately allowed to sit for the exam if official national, state, or local orders in effect as of June 15, 2020, prevent administering the test to all applicants.  The board anticipates making a decision on or about June 15 if limits on test takers must be imposed because of restrictions on gathering sizes and posting a notice on its website.  Per the Court’s order, applicants will be approved for testing based on the order in which their properly filed applications were received, with priority afforded equally to Missouri residents, graduates of ABA-approved law schools located in Missouri or a contiguous state, licensed attorneys for an employer located in Missouri, and recipients of an offer of employment as a licensed attorney for an employer located in Missouri.

TaxProf Blog coverage of the July 2020 bar exam:

For complete TaxProf Blog coverage of the coronavirus, see here.

https://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2020/05/july-bar-exam-update-illinois-iowa-maryland-missouri.html

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