Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

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2807
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Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby 2807 » Sat Nov 13, 2010 12:16 am

Is it better/easier to stay in the state you see yourself living in when you pick a school? Obviously, one plan is to go to the best school you can, but if you intend on returning to "home" you will have to take a bar exam where you did not go to school.

Is it much harder to take a bar exam in a state where you did not go to law school? Or is there a large cross-over of basic knowledge of the law? Do most people take extensive state-specific classes prior to taking the bar in a state they did not study in?

If you had a TTT in-state, or a TT out of state, what would be better?

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JusticeHarlan
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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby JusticeHarlan » Sat Nov 13, 2010 10:28 am

2807 wrote:Is it better/easier to stay in the state you see yourself living in when you pick a school? Obviously, one plan is to go to the best school you can, but if you intend on returning to "home" you will have to take a bar exam where you did not go to school.

Is it much harder to take a bar exam in a state where you did not go to law school? Or is there a large cross-over of basic knowledge of the law? Do most people take extensive state-specific classes prior to taking the bar in a state they did not study in?

If you had a TTT in-state, or a TT out of state, what would be better?

You don't really learn a particular state's law in law school. They teach some classes using federal law that is pretty well mirrored in each state (for courses like Civil Procedure and Evidence), and your 1L common law courses (think torts, contracts, property) will be taught using cases from all over to show you the general way things are done, as well as things called Restatements that give the general way the law is overall; when there are divisions where some states go one way and others go another, you'll sometimes read a case from each to see the difference, but only a sampling, and not focused on any state over another.

You're going to have to take a bar exam prep course after 3L anyways, and those are done by state.

However, once you drop below a certain level in the rankings, you do want to attend school in the region you wish to practice, but because its easier to get a job there, not because it will make the bar easier. If you're discussing second- and third-tier schools, jobs prospects will be very regional.

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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby ggocat » Sat Nov 13, 2010 10:53 am

2807 wrote:Is it better/easier to stay in the state you see yourself living in when you pick a school? Obviously, one plan is to go to the best school you can, but if you intend on returning to "home" you will have to take a bar exam where you did not go to school.

Is it much harder to take a bar exam in a state where you did not go to law school? Or is there a large cross-over of basic knowledge of the law? Do most people take extensive state-specific classes prior to taking the bar in a state they did not study in?

If you had a TTT in-state, or a TT out of state, what would be better?

I went to a TTT out of state rather than T2 in state and T1 out of state. I graduated earlier this year and returned to the home state.

There is an advantage to attending law school in the state you want to live. As the other poster suggested, this is not necessarily because of the bar exam. Having a network is important, both for job hunting and for practicing law in general. It is not "much harder" to take the bar exam in another state. Many of the topics cross over completely. For example, the Multistate Bar Exam is often worth 40-50%. But even "state specific" law often crosses over quite a bit.

Most people take a bar prep course. But you can get a decent advantage (and lower your stress level during bar study) if you take some bar-topic classes while in law school. I disagree with the other poster who said you will not learn state-specific law. Although true for 1L and some upper level classes (e.g., UCC classes and federal subjects like bankruptcy, tax, crim pro), some profs discuss state law more than others in particular classes that are based primarily on state law.

In choosing between any two schools, I wouldn't be able to generalize. Not all TTT and T2 schools are alike. But cost and location should be primary concerns when you are not attending a highly ranked school (think T14/T17/T25ish). Generally, attending an in-state school might give you a slight edge for the bar exam, but it should not be a major concern (difference in pass rate for in-staters and out-of-staters was only 5% I think). Most people pass the bar exam.
Last edited by ggocat on Sat Nov 13, 2010 12:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby patrickd139 » Sat Nov 13, 2010 11:16 am

2807 wrote:Is it better/easier to stay in the state you see yourself living in when you pick a school? Obviously, one plan is to go to the best school you can, but if you intend on returning to "home" you will have to take a bar exam where you did not go to school.

Is it much harder to take a bar exam in a state where you did not go to law school? Or is there a large cross-over of basic knowledge of the law? Do most people take extensive state-specific classes prior to taking the bar in a state they did not study in?


If you had a TTT in-state, or a TT out of state, what would be better?

w/r/t your first question, barring acceptance into a T14, this site will should almost always direct you to pick the school in the market you see yourself practicing in.

1) What market are you trying to get into? If that market is Texas, California, New York, or Illinois, please be city-specific with your answer.
2) In miles/kilometers, how far away is the TT from your target market?
3) How close are your ties to your target market in state?
4) What are your career aspirations? (i.e. DA, Biglawl, solo practitioner, JAG)

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2807
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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby 2807 » Thu Nov 18, 2010 2:46 pm

I am in CA, and am a reverse splitter. I am a non-traditional applicant and am hoping for the best.

Without the usual commentary from the peanut gallery--

If I were to have an opportunity at a strong T2, maybe #40 and up, would that be a better option than my local T4?

It seems like it would, but the T4 has many opportunities for externships and alumni that I would miss out on if I were out of state at a solid T2.

Is it name recognition at this point? Not all T2 are created equal.

What do you think?

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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby fragged » Thu Nov 18, 2010 3:01 pm

I am in the same situation. Reverse splitter, nontraditional.

Honestly, I've gotten mixed reviews from attorneys I have spoken to. One of my friends who attended Loyola (Los Angeles), clearly a solid T2, said she would go to the best school you get into, period.

Another one of my friends who went to school across town at UCLA said their degree has made it really easy to find a job, but he works in a firm with a mix of UCLA, USC and Loyola grads. He said if he had to do it all again, since he stayed in Los Angeles, he would have taken the $40,000 scholarship Loyola offered him and be in far less debt. But again, he was never in it for Biglaw, and he always planned on staying in Los Angeles.

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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby Aqualibrium » Thu Nov 18, 2010 3:23 pm

I'm facing this issue not as an applicant, but as a 2L trying to anticipate where I'll be taking the bar. I've got two summer jobs lined up in two states other than the one I went to school in. Both states have notoriously difficult and very state specific bar exams. Like other posters said, I'll take a bar prep course anyway, but I'll be significantly behind people who went to school in those states because almost everything will be new to me.

If you know for a fact you want to practice in a certain state. The obvious answer is to go to school there because your job prospects are generally improved. With regards to the bar though, I'd do some research about the difficulty and other specifics about the state's bar.

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2807
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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby 2807 » Thu Nov 18, 2010 3:31 pm

I'm curious of a school like BU or BC or ND or WUSTL or Vandy..?

Those are big schools with fantastic credentials when compared to my local T4. (In CA)

It is hard to NOT go to one of those in the event I was accepted. But, some people really say it is better to stay in the market you see yourself working in.

The debt is not my issue (I am lucky). I am more concerned with networking and job placement if I spend 3 years out of state and then return home with no prospects... Will that T2 carry me? I much prefer the T2. I dream of ND.

Any experience out there on this?

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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby patrickd139 » Thu Nov 18, 2010 3:36 pm

2807 wrote:Any experience out there on this?

Yes. If you want to get a job/practice law in California, go to a California law school. LOL at BU->Los Angeles.

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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby nealric » Thu Nov 18, 2010 3:39 pm

Is it much harder to take a bar exam in a state where you did not go to law school? Or is there a large cross-over of basic knowledge of the law? Do most people take extensive state-specific classes prior to taking the bar in a state they did not study in?

If you had a TTT in-state, or a TT out of state, what would be better?


The bar exam isn't an issue. I had no problem passing the NY bar without going to school there. I hadn't taken more than 1/2 the subjects on the bar in law school. You learn them in barbri- it's no big deal.

The issue is employment. The lower ranked a school is, the more employment tends to be limited to the region the school is in.

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2807
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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby 2807 » Thu Nov 18, 2010 3:47 pm

patrickd139 wrote:
2807 wrote:Any experience out there on this?

Yes. If you want to get a job/practice law in California, go to a California law school. LOL at BU->Los Angeles.



What does this mean? --> LOL at BU->Los Angeles

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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby blerg » Thu Nov 18, 2010 3:49 pm

2807 wrote:
patrickd139 wrote:
2807 wrote:Any experience out there on this?

Yes. If you want to get a job/practice law in California, go to a California law school. LOL at BU->Los Angeles.



What does this mean? --> LOL at BU->Los Angeles


It means it's hard enough to get an East Coast job coming out of BU.

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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby patrickd139 » Thu Nov 18, 2010 3:53 pm

blerg wrote:
2807 wrote:
patrickd139 wrote:
2807 wrote:Any experience out there on this?

Yes. If you want to get a job/practice law in California, go to a California law school. LOL at BU->Los Angeles.



What does this mean? --> LOL at BU->Los Angeles


It means it's hard enough to get an East Coast job coming out of BU.

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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby 2807 » Thu Nov 18, 2010 4:10 pm

So a regional T3 or T4 is better than a out of state #17--#30?

That is the question. I can see both sides of the debate, just curious on other's advice. I can't imagine NOT going to #22 BU and choosing my local T4. But, the T4 does have a vast alumni and proven extern/networking in local market. Hmmm.

So, what about the "go to the Best school you can?" I assume "best" generally means "pedigree"?

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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby patrickd139 » Thu Nov 18, 2010 4:19 pm

2807 wrote:So a regional T3 or T4 is better than a out of state #17--#30?

That is the question. I can see both sides of the debate, just curious on other's advice. I can't imagine NOT going to #22 BU and choosing my local T4. But, the T4 does have a vast alumni and proven extern/networking in local market. Hmmm.

So, what about the "go to the Best school you can?" I assume "best" generally means "pedigree"?

When you get outside the T14, job prospects become MUCH more regional. Plus, there are schools in each region of California in each tier of regional rankings. Further, there's no appreciable difference between schools ranked within about 10 spots or so if they're regional schools. No one with a straight face can argue that Fordham is quantifiably better than UC-Boulder, other than the fact that you might want to practice in New York. If you want to practice in Cali, why would you go to BU or ND (22) instead of USC (18) or UC Davis (28)?

ETA: you lose most of your school's pull when you leave the region it's in. Then it become more about ties to the community and your class rank. Since there's no way you can predict where you'll fall in your class rank, (but you CAN predict scholarships) take the reduced debt load and close ties to the community. If you do well at the regional school, you'll have a job in the region you want to practice in. If you don't, you've saved a lot of money. If you do well at the T1 or T2, you've still got an uphill battle, plus a lot more debt.
Last edited by patrickd139 on Thu Nov 18, 2010 4:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby 2807 » Thu Nov 18, 2010 4:26 pm

patrickd139 wrote:
2807 wrote:So a regional T3 or T4 is better than a out of state #17--#30?

That is the question. I can see both sides of the debate, just curious on other's advice. I can't imagine NOT going to #22 BU and choosing my local T4. But, the T4 does have a vast alumni and proven extern/networking in local market. Hmmm.

So, what about the "go to the Best school you can?" I assume "best" generally means "pedigree"?

When you get outside the T14, job prospects become MUCH more regional. Plus, there are schools in each region of California in each tier of regional rankings. Further, there's no appreciable difference between schools ranked within about 10 spots or so if they're regional schools. No one with a straight face can argue that Fordham is quantifiably better than UC-Boulder, other than the fact that you might want to practice in New York. If you want to practice in Cali, why would you go to BU or ND (22) instead of USC (18) or UC Davis (28)?


Ok, we are getting closer. Thanks for hanging in here with me.

I am a non-trad reverse splitter. So I have apps out all over. IF I were to get picked up by a local top school, then it is a no-brainer. BUT, I may not. It is the luck of the draw for my reverse-splitter position.

So, if the only school(s) that give me a chance are in the 20-30 range, out of state, I will be comparing them to the T4 near me. I am wondering which is better. It seems like a solid T2 is way better for longevity and pedigree and options. But the T4 has its upside too.

Thanks

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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby patrickd139 » Thu Nov 18, 2010 4:29 pm

2807 wrote:
patrickd139 wrote:
2807 wrote:So a regional T3 or T4 is better than a out of state #17--#30?

That is the question. I can see both sides of the debate, just curious on other's advice. I can't imagine NOT going to #22 BU and choosing my local T4. But, the T4 does have a vast alumni and proven extern/networking in local market. Hmmm.

So, what about the "go to the Best school you can?" I assume "best" generally means "pedigree"?

When you get outside the T14, job prospects become MUCH more regional. Plus, there are schools in each region of California in each tier of regional rankings. Further, there's no appreciable difference between schools ranked within about 10 spots or so if they're regional schools. No one with a straight face can argue that Fordham is quantifiably better than UC-Boulder, other than the fact that you might want to practice in New York. If you want to practice in Cali, why would you go to BU or ND (22) instead of USC (18) or UC Davis (28)?


Ok, we are getting closer. Thanks for hanging in here with me.

I am a non-trad reverse splitter. So I have apps out all over. IF I were to get picked up by a local top school, then it is a no-brainer. BUT, I may not. It is the luck of the draw for my reverse-splitter position.

So, if the only school(s) that give me a chance are in the 20-30 range, out of state, I will be comparing them to the T4 near me. I am wondering which is better. It seems like a solid T2 is way better for longevity and pedigree and options. But the T4 has its upside too.

Thanks

Edited to accommodate TLSing while doing other things. I think it comes close to answering what you're asking.

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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby ggocat » Thu Nov 18, 2010 7:15 pm

2807 wrote:I'm curious of a school like BU or BC or ND or WUSTL or Vandy..?

Those are big schools with fantastic credentials when compared to my local T4. (In CA)

It is hard to NOT go to one of those in the event I was accepted. But, some people really say it is better to stay in the market you see yourself working in.

The debt is not my issue (I am lucky). I am more concerned with networking and job placement if I spend 3 years out of state and then return home with no prospects... Will that T2 carry me? I much prefer the T2. I dream of ND.

Any experience out there on this?

If money is really not an issue, then I would go to BU/BC/ND/WUSTL/Vandy over a T4 in California, even for work in California (assuming you already have some connection to California).

I don't really understand how money is not an issue, though. If you have access to $100,000 not limited to education costs, then I'd much rather graduate from the local school with $100,000 in the bank over one of the mentioned schools.

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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby 2807 » Thu Nov 18, 2010 10:43 pm

ggocat wrote:
2807 wrote:I'm curious of a school like BU or BC or ND or WUSTL or Vandy..?

Those are big schools with fantastic credentials when compared to my local T4. (In CA)

It is hard to NOT go to one of those in the event I was accepted. But, some people really say it is better to stay in the market you see yourself working in.

The debt is not my issue (I am lucky). I am more concerned with networking and job placement if I spend 3 years out of state and then return home with no prospects... Will that T2 carry me? I much prefer the T2. I dream of ND.

Any experience out there on this?

If money is really not an issue, then I would go to BU/BC/ND/WUSTL/Vandy over a T4 in California, even for work in California (assuming you already have some connection to California).

I don't really understand how money is not an issue, though. If you have access to $100,000 not limited to education costs, then I'd much rather graduate from the local school with $100,000 in the bank over one of the mentioned schools.


Well, you created an If/then scenario that confused you. ^

Your scenario does not exist for me.

Free law school anywhere I get into does.

I earned it the hard way. Trust me. 8)

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Re: Law school in one state, bar exam in another...

Postby ggocat » Fri Nov 19, 2010 12:29 am

2807 wrote:
ggocat wrote:
2807 wrote:I'm curious of a school like BU or BC or ND or WUSTL or Vandy..?

Those are big schools with fantastic credentials when compared to my local T4. (In CA)

It is hard to NOT go to one of those in the event I was accepted. But, some people really say it is better to stay in the market you see yourself working in.

The debt is not my issue (I am lucky). I am more concerned with networking and job placement if I spend 3 years out of state and then return home with no prospects... Will that T2 carry me? I much prefer the T2. I dream of ND.

Any experience out there on this?

If money is really not an issue, then I would go to BU/BC/ND/WUSTL/Vandy over a T4 in California, even for work in California (assuming you already have some connection to California).

I don't really understand how money is not an issue, though. If you have access to $100,000 not limited to education costs, then I'd much rather graduate from the local school with $100,000 in the bank over one of the mentioned schools.


Well, you created an If/then scenario that confused you. ^

Your scenario does not exist for me.

Free law school anywhere I get into does.

I earned it the hard way. Trust me. 8)

I don't think I was confused; I said you either have access to money or access to money that can only be used for education (e.g., military). It's the latter, right? That's why I said "not limited to education." (Some people post that debt isn't issue because they have savings or family aid.)




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