Character and Fitness issues

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
linquest
Posts: 143
Joined: Sat Apr 12, 2008 11:06 am

Re: Character and Fitness issues

Postby linquest » Sat Jun 20, 2009 3:33 pm

vlynne wrote:any advice about how to find someone who would know a thing or two for direct advice?


Always contact your state bar, board of examiners, supreme court or whichever gov't agency does character & fitness screening for attorney licensing in the state that you want to practice. The roster for all states is here- http://www.ncbex.org/bar-admissions/offices/

This goes to anyone worrying about potential C&F issues. You don't even have to give them a name, you can call anonymously. Maybe we should make this a PSA :roll:

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JJM84
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Re: Character and Fitness issues

Postby JJM84 » Sat Jun 20, 2009 4:31 pm

Zojirushi wrote:I have been looking up various reasons that state bars have denied admission. Beyond the usual debt, chemical dependency, blatant dishonesty in court, what have you all seen?

This is an interesting one from a Boalt student who applied to the Texas Bar.
http://bulk.resource.org/courts.gov/c/F ... -2582.html



What do you mean by debt because I have quite a bit?

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leobowski
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Re: Character and Fitness issues

Postby leobowski » Sun Jun 21, 2009 1:20 am

JJM84 wrote:
Zojirushi wrote:I have been looking up various reasons that state bars have denied admission. Beyond the usual debt, chemical dependency, blatant dishonesty in court, what have you all seen?

This is an interesting one from a Boalt student who applied to the Texas Bar.
http://bulk.resource.org/courts.gov/c/F ... -2582.html



What do you mean by debt because I have quite a bit?



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Last edited by leobowski on Fri Aug 06, 2010 4:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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JJM84
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Re: Character and Fitness issues

Postby JJM84 » Sun Jun 21, 2009 1:46 am

leobowski wrote:
JJM84 wrote:
Zojirushi wrote:I have been looking up various reasons that state bars have denied admission. Beyond the usual debt, chemical dependency, blatant dishonesty in court, what have you all seen?

This is an interesting one from a Boalt student who applied to the Texas Bar.
http://bulk.resource.org/courts.gov/c/F ... -2582.html



What do you mean by debt because I have quite a bit?



Accounts in good standing don't matter; past due accounts or defaulted loans will only affect your admission.

On a side note, I've been looking at a few bar applications in different states. Many of the questions only occur crimes/misconduct which have occurred over the past 5 years. This is a huge load off for someone like myself that made some stupid decisions as a juvenile.



So are you saying that people with defaulted loans or past due accounts are not able to pass character and fitness? This is VERY hard to believe unless there are extreme examples.

linquest
Posts: 143
Joined: Sat Apr 12, 2008 11:06 am

Re: Character and Fitness issues

Postby linquest » Sun Jun 21, 2009 2:09 am

JJM84 wrote:So are you saying that people with defaulted loans or past due accounts are not able to pass character and fitness? This is VERY hard to believe unless there are extreme examples.


I don't know that they're not able to *pass*, but it is an issue that they look into. I've heard that defaulting on government-backed student loans are a big no-no, not just for getting admitted to practice law, but as a bar to employment (especially government jobs) or other professional licensing. That's why so many employers require a credit check before giving you a formal job offer.

Here are some finance-related questions on the IL C&F application (bolding mine):
35 Has any surety on any bond on which you were the principal or obligor been required to pay any money on your behalf?
If yes, complete Form 35 for each bond.
Debt or Obligation, Credit Card Revoked and Student Loan
36A Have you ever had any debt or obligation, including, without limitation, credit card debts, student loans, bank loans, and court-ordered obligations to pay child support, alimony and family support reported as more than 60 days past due?
If yes, complete a separate Form 36A for each debt or obligation.
36B Have you ever had a credit card revoked or involuntarily canceled, a credit account involuntarily closed, or any debt referred to collection or charged off as not collectible?
If yes, complete a separate Form 36B for each account.
36C Have you ever defaulted on any student loan?

If yes, complete a separate Form 36C for each defaulted loan.
Failed to File any Federal, State or Local Income Tax Return as Required by Law
37 Except if due to insufficient income, have you ever failed to file any federal, state or local income tax return as required by law, failed to pay any taxes when due, including employers' withholding taxes, or entered into any repayment agreement with a taxing authority?
If yes, explain and for each instance advise the year, the reason for the failure to file or to pay when due, and the status or final outcome of the matter. In addition, you must submit with the paper portion of your application documentation establishing that taxes are current.
Filed for Relief under Federal Bankruptcy Law
38 Have you ever filed for relief under federal bankruptcy law?

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leobowski
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Re: Character and Fitness issues

Postby leobowski » Sun Jun 21, 2009 10:45 pm

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Last edited by leobowski on Fri Aug 06, 2010 4:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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D. H2Oman
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Re: Character and Fitness issues

Postby D. H2Oman » Mon Jun 22, 2009 5:38 pm

If you want a good job, I would definetly have your self in good financial shape by the end of law school. Your credit score will be checked. I would not want to have any past due accounts, or defaulted debts.

green
Posts: 202
Joined: Mon Dec 22, 2008 9:19 pm

Re: Character and Fitness issues

Postby green » Wed Jun 24, 2009 7:06 pm

I didn't mention a traffic ticket on my application because it said to check the box for offenses "excluding minor traffic violations which did not involve injury to others". It was a large ticket that I received ($350), but I also did not cause injury and it was the only ticket I've ever gotten (3 years ago). Is this all right?




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