Foreign-trained Eligibility Requirements
New York Bar Exam
The New York Court of Appeals recently amended the rule on eligibility of foreign-trained attorneys to sit for the New York Bar. If you intend to sit for the New York Bar, please carefully review the rule (§ 520.6 of the Rules of the Court of Appeals for the Admission of Attorneys and Counselors at Law (22 NYCRR §520.6)). For its full text and information on application procedures, visit the New York State Board of Law Examiners Web site.
The New York Board of Law Examiners (NY Board) requires all those with a foreign legal education (from common law and civil law jurisdictions) who wish to sit for the Bar exam to complete the Online Foreign Evaluation Form and to send supporting documentation. Students who would like to sit for the July 2014 New York bar examination should complete the Online Foreign Evaluation Form and submit supporting documentation as soon as possible. The deadline to complete the process of submitting materials to the NY Board is October 1, 2013. As part of the NY Board’s credential review, you will need to ask the law schools you have attended to send official transcripts to the Board and possibly to supply other documents as well. It may be easier for you to make requests for documents and to access necessary records while you are in your home country. We urge you to complete the process as early as possible so that if the Board finds a deficiency in your documentation, you will have the opportunity to supply additional information before the Oct. 1st deadline.
Some students from common law countries will be found eligible to sit for the NY Bar on the basis of their first law degree. However, many students (including some from common law countries) will need both to complete the LL.M. degree and take certain numbers of credits in particular classes as part of the degree in order to be eligible to sit for the New York Bar exam. These eligibility requirements are independent of any requirements that must be satisfied in order to earn the LL.M. degree or to qualify for a particular LL.M. specialization.
The requirements can be broken down into two sets:
I. Students must take a minimum of 24 credits in “classroom courses at the law school in substantive and procedural law and professional skills.” These 24 credits may include up to 4 credits in certain clinical courses (§ 520.6(b)(3)(vii)(a)) and up to 6 credits in certain other courses related to legal training taught at the Stern school or other parts of NYU (§520.6(b)(3(vii)(b)).
Many NYU LL.M. students will take more than 24 credits worth of courses that count toward this requirement. To earn the NYU LL.M. degree, you must carry a load of 24 credits during the fall and spring semesters. In addition, most foreign-trained LL.M.s are required to take Introduction to U.S. Law (2 credits) and Legal Research, Writing and Analysis I (1 credit) during the summer (in August). These 3 credits will count toward the 24 credits required by the NY Board of Law Examiners but not towards NYU’s 24 credit requirement. It is, however, important to be aware that certain credits that count towards NYU’s 24 credits worth of fall and spring courses will not count for purposes of bar eligibility. For instance, credits earned for Directed Research and for clinical courses or courses in other parts of NYU in excess of the maximums set out above will not count for the purposes of bar eligibility.
II. The program of study must include a specified minimum numbers of credits for classes in the following areas. For a detailed description of the requirement, refer to (§520.6(b)(3)(d)).
A: history, goals, instruction, value, rules and responsibilities of U.S. legal profession (2 credits)
B: legal research, writing and analysis (2 credits)
C: American legal studies (2 credits)
D: subjects tested on the New York State bar examination (6 Credits)
Note that you cannot use the same credits to satisfy the requirements of more than one area (A, B, C and D).
If you take Introduction to U.S. Law (2 credits) and Legal Research, Writing and Analysis I (1 credit) in the summer you will complete the Group C requirement and one credit of the Group B requirement prior to the start of the fall term. Additional credits to fulfill the Group B. requirement can be earned by taking Legal, Research, Writing and Analysis II for 1 or 2 credits; many students prefer the two credit class because of the opportunity it offers to hone practical skills and receive feedback on writing.
To guide you in developing a program of study for the LL.M. year that satisfies these eligibility requirements, below is a chart that shows which Law School classes have been approved by the New York Court of Appeals to meet the requirements in each area. Many, but not all, of these classes will be offered in the 2013-14 academic year.
|Group A: history, goals, instruction, value, rules and responsibilities of U.S. legal profession (2 credits)|
|Group B: legal research, writing and analysis (2 credits)|
|Group C: American Legal Studies (2 credits) *|
* Credits earned in these classes in excess of the two needed to satisfy the C requirement, may be applied to the D requirement. If you take Introduction to U.S. Law and Legislation and the Regulatory Sate, the administrative law class will fulfill the C requirement and Introduction to U.S. Law will supply 2 of the 6 credits required under D.
|Group D: subjects tested on the New York State bar examination (6 Credits)|
*Please note: Property (for 2Ls): LAW-LW.11783 qualifies under §520.6(b)(3)(vi)(d) only when the description for the class posted on the Law School web site reads as follows: A study of the institution of property: property interests in land and in wealth other than land; formation of interests in land; the estate concept; possessory and nonpossessory interests; concurrent interests; the landlord-tenant relation; the allocation and development of land resources by private arrangement and through community planning devices such as zoning and eminent domain.
Foreign-trained lawyers who intend to pursue the LL.M. in Taxation or the LL.M. in International Taxation should contact John Stephens at Stephens@exchange.law.nyu.edu with any questions about qualifying to sit for the NY Bar exam.
Students in all other master's programs should contact firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.