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California Bar Review

 

M EMO: RIGOS UBE DROPS SUPPORT FOR NON-UBE STATE BARS

Effective January 1, 2013 we have decided to cease continuing to support the bar association examiners that have not adopted the ABA’s Uniform Bar Exam (UBE).  The same factors that drove the accounting profession and AICPA to establish a national “uniform” CPA exam are now working on the legal profession and driving the ABA’s progress in UBE adoption.  There are three basic impacted groups when a state Bar Association adopts the UBE:  law students, law schools and multi-jurisdiction law firms. 

First, law students, particularly today, may have difficulty finding local law related employment.  That is especially true for those states that have more law schools than law jobs and thus are graduating students for export.   Taking the UBE, as opposed to an individual state exam, allows your graduates to apply for positions in a dozen states without having to worry about taking another bar exam later.  UBE scores usually are portable to non-UBE states so students have more future flexibility and control.

Second, law schools today are having more difficulty filling their seats with qualified applicants.  A law school in a UBE state may seem more attractive to potential students for all the right reasons.  Some predict law schools in non-UBE states will find their student acceptance ratios decline.  Law school educators should support NCBE’s efforts in their states to adopt the UBE. 

Third, larger multi-office law firms are of import because they hire the best graduates.  Large client corporations are increasingly relying on one firm to handle all of their national specialized legal work.  The multi-jurisdictional practice of law is here for these firms and they need their lawyers to work on their clients’ opportunities and problems no matter in which state it occurs. The UBE brings this 21st century advantage to U.S. law firms by allowing them to better serve the needs of their clients.  The UBE leads to efficiency in the delivery of legal services, which in the end serves the public interest. 

Bar Association examiners argue they need to educate their new lawyers on local subjects such as court rules, tax, Indian law, national resource law, community property, etc.  We agree but believe this can be accomplished by the Bar Association in a CLE format.  This could provide much more focus than a bar exam question which typically only tests a subject generally.

We will continue to support our existing Rigos students in all states.

Last updated on 1/14/2013 3:39:05 PM