Character and Fitness Question

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lawschoolhopeful440

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Character and Fitness Question

Postby lawschoolhopeful440 » Mon Dec 17, 2018 1:32 pm

Alright so during my sophomore year of college I was unlucky enough to get an alcohol violation warning. It did not result in any probation, suspension, or any other punishment but I know that I will still be required to disclose it on my applications. I was wondering how much this would negatively affect my application. Does this make me look like less of a competitive applicant or do they usually view this as an immature mistake that I honestly disclosed. Thanks guys, I just want the truth so I can prepare myself haha.

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UBETutoring

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Re: Character and Fitness Question

Postby UBETutoring » Mon Dec 17, 2018 2:08 pm

lawschoolhopeful440 wrote:Alright so during my sophomore year of college I was unlucky enough to get an alcohol violation warning. It did not result in any probation, suspension, or any other punishment but I know that I will still be required to disclose it on my applications. I was wondering how much this would negatively affect my application. Does this make me look like less of a competitive applicant or do they usually view this as an immature mistake that I honestly disclosed. Thanks guys, I just want the truth so I can prepare myself haha.

Won't have any affect. Just disclose for post-LS C&F purposes. It still won't have an effect then as long as you disclose. Remember that a bar reviewer will eventually read the disclosure you submit to LS.

Bingo_Bongo

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Re: Character and Fitness Question

Postby Bingo_Bongo » Tue Dec 18, 2018 2:31 am

+1 for the post saying it won't have any impact.

Just disclose it (if it even comes up; if I remember correctly, I don't think any of my applications or moral character questionnaires asked anything that would require me to disclose a mere warning given by a school about alcohol.) Even if you do have to disclose is, that type of offense is not something that would disqualify you from the practice of law.

The Bar is only concerned about what are called crimes of "moral turpitude." Those are crimes of dishonesty (theft/fraud/ect) and violence. They reflect a willingness to hurt people, or take advantage of situations for your own selfish benefit (a character trait fiduciaries like lawyers, cannot have).

And schools are only concerned about that stuff (crimes/prior bad conduct in school) to make sure you're eligible to be a lawyer. It wouldn't be that good if law schools accepted students who stood no chance of passing the c&f requirements. If your past criminal conduct/discipline from a school doesn't reflect dishonesty or violence they won't care.

jmcali19

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Re: Character and Fitness Question

Postby jmcali19 » Mon Jan 14, 2019 11:19 pm

Bingo_Bongo wrote:+1 for the post saying it won't have any impact.

Just disclose it (if it even comes up; if I remember correctly, I don't think any of my applications or moral character questionnaires asked anything that would require me to disclose a mere warning given by a school about alcohol.) Even if you do have to disclose is, that type of offense is not something that would disqualify you from the practice of law.

The Bar is only concerned about what are called crimes of "moral turpitude." Those are crimes of dishonesty (theft/fraud/ect) and violence. They reflect a willingness to hurt people, or take advantage of situations for your own selfish benefit (a character trait fiduciaries like lawyers, cannot have).

And schools are only concerned about that stuff (crimes/prior bad conduct in school) to make sure you're eligible to be a lawyer. It wouldn't be that good if law schools accepted students who stood no chance of passing the c&f requirements. If your past criminal conduct/discipline from a school doesn't reflect dishonesty or violence they won't care.


SO if I have a few discipline issues from undergrad: "dishonesty/fraud" misconduct from a prank (pretended to be suitemate on his chat account with friends) would that be taken seriously? I also have a one-year suspension due to a threat uttered in shock: I yelled I was going to kill someone after they drunkenly almost ran me over with a golf cart. I was not deemed threatening upon investigation, just melodramatic. It was more than 5 years ago...

cavalier1138

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Re: Character and Fitness Question

Postby cavalier1138 » Tue Jan 15, 2019 11:13 am

jmcali19 wrote:SO if I have a few discipline issues from undergrad: "dishonesty/fraud" misconduct from a prank (pretended to be suitemate on his chat account with friends) would that be taken seriously? I also have a one-year suspension due to a threat uttered in shock: I yelled I was going to kill someone after they drunkenly almost ran me over with a golf cart. I was not deemed threatening upon investigation, just melodramatic. It was more than 5 years ago...


If the actual record says that you committed "fraud," that's definitely something you'll want to explain in an addendum. The second one sounds a little more concerning. Why were you suspended for a year if the investigation determined you didn't actually threaten anyone?

Bingo_Bongo

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Re: Character and Fitness Question

Postby Bingo_Bongo » Wed Jan 16, 2019 9:46 pm

cavalier1138 wrote:
jmcali19 wrote:SO if I have a few discipline issues from undergrad: "dishonesty/fraud" misconduct from a prank (pretended to be suitemate on his chat account with friends) would that be taken seriously? I also have a one-year suspension due to a threat uttered in shock: I yelled I was going to kill someone after they drunkenly almost ran me over with a golf cart. I was not deemed threatening upon investigation, just melodramatic. It was more than 5 years ago...


If the actual record says that you committed "fraud," that's definitely something you'll want to explain in an addendum. The second one sounds a little more concerning. Why were you suspended for a year if the investigation determined you didn't actually threaten anyone?


I'm guessing OP yelled that he was going to kill a school employee (who else drives golf carts around campus?). I guessing that the disciplinary board either made a factual finding that (1) OP didn't mean to carrying out the threat, but still made a threat with the intent to scare the other party (which is actually the case of most criminal threat cases I've dealt with); or (2) OP's utterance wasn't actually intended to be a threat, or even scare the other party, but the school had a strict speech code that doesn't care about intent or context (which is actually fairly common).

In either event, I can see a school suspending a person for a year for that. Schools take that violent speech really seriously. There's a guy who was just sent to prison for a couple years for Criminal Threats (not jail, but actual prison) for sending a school administrator a video where he was talking about how much he hated the school/administrators while laying in a bathtub with a handgun on his belly. If I recall correctly, he didn't even actually make any direct threats in the video, but the subtext was enough.



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