Where Should I Take the Bar?

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Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 24, 2012 1:04 am

Hi Everyone,

I'm a 3L at UVA and don't have a job lined up for post-grad. I'm trying to decide whether to take the bar in Massachusetts or in Virginia. I'm originally from Massachusetts, and most of my extended family lives there. However, my girlfriend lives in Virginia (non-law student). We've only been dating four or five months, and we're not quite at the stage where she can say whether she would want to move to Massachusetts. Massachusetts is pretty much where I would take the exam otherwise. It's a bit awkward because I have to make a major life choice like this at a time when she isn't really ready to do the same. I imagine the answer is that this is a very personal decision, but if anyone else has been in a similar situation and has any wisdom to impart that would be great. Thanks!

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Re: Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 24, 2012 1:29 am

You come first. Do what you think is right, then work out what must be worked out with you girlfriend.

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Re: Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 24, 2012 1:40 am

Check into reciprocity between VA and MA. Maybe they allow you to wave in after a short length of time in practice and it's really a non-issue. Otherwise, my advice is to have an honest chat with your lady friend.

IMO, there is no point in being half-assed in your relationship. It just doesn't create a good foundation for anything down the road. In other words, if you want the relationship, give this decision the same sort of consideration that you would give it if you were married. If that doesn't seem right to you, maybe it's time to move on...? $.02.

cantabaout
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Re: Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby cantabaout » Tue Jan 24, 2012 1:43 am

take MA and waive into DC?!

LawIdiot86
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Re: Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby LawIdiot86 » Tue Jan 24, 2012 1:47 am

I would say MA from the various things I've heard about the bar. Virginia apparently is tougher on C+F (I don't know quite what that means though) and Virginia makes you take the bar exam in a suit. Also, you can pair the MA bar exam with NY or PA and reciprocity into DC easily. Unless you're planning to live in Richmond or some other part of Virginia that excludes commuting to DC, I would say do MA. Even if you end up marrying her and living in VA, it would be fairly difficult to find a decent (biglaw/govt/midlaw) job outside the DC area assuming your lack of employment now is in some way related to average grades at UVA.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby CanadianWolf » Tue Jan 24, 2012 12:57 pm

Take both.

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wiseowl
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Re: Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby wiseowl » Tue Jan 24, 2012 1:33 pm

cantabaout wrote:take MA and waive into DC?!

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theavrock
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Re: Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby theavrock » Tue Jan 24, 2012 1:42 pm

You've only been dating a few months. Don't make a decision like this on someone that you have only know for a short period of time.

It sounds harsh, but your girl would see you as a total pussy if you were set to take the MA bar before meeting her and now all of a sudden you take the VA bar.

Take the MA bar.

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Re: Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 24, 2012 1:44 pm

Great, thanks for the advice (OP here). I've thought about MA and waiving into DC a lot and think that might be what I will do. Regardless, I'll have a chat with my girlfriend and see what we can do.

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nealric
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Re: Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby nealric » Tue Jan 24, 2012 11:40 pm

VA is a MUCH harder bar than MA.

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wiseowl
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Re: Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby wiseowl » Wed Jan 25, 2012 11:44 am

nealric wrote:VA is a MUCH harder bar than MA.


yea I didn't know a polite way to say this. One state is called "Passachusetts," the other makes you wear a suit and write essays on the most arcane law possible.

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patrickd139
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Re: Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby patrickd139 » Thu Jan 26, 2012 12:40 am

wiseowl wrote:
nealric wrote:VA is a MUCH harder bar than MA.


yea I didn't know a polite way to say this. One state is called "Passachusetts," the other makes you wear a suit and write essays on the most arcane law possible.

Holy hell. I had to look that up because I didn't believe you. That's ridiculous.

LawIdiot86
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Re: Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby LawIdiot86 » Thu Jan 26, 2012 12:42 am

patrickd139 wrote:
wiseowl wrote:
nealric wrote:VA is a MUCH harder bar than MA.


yea I didn't know a polite way to say this. One state is called "Passachusetts," the other makes you wear a suit and write essays on the most arcane law possible.

Holy hell. I had to look that up because I didn't believe you. That's ridiculous.


And rubber-soled shoes so you don't make distracting noise typing and so you look like an idiot.

MrAnon
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Re: Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby MrAnon » Thu Jan 26, 2012 1:23 pm

Take MA. Buy the books for VA and display them prominently and tell her you have the intention to take VA after you take MA. it will keep her happy.

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Re: Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 26, 2012 1:55 pm

LawIdiot86 wrote:
patrickd139 wrote:
wiseowl wrote:
nealric wrote:VA is a MUCH harder bar than MA.


yea I didn't know a polite way to say this. One state is called "Passachusetts," the other makes you wear a suit and write essays on the most arcane law possible.

Holy hell. I had to look that up because I didn't believe you. That's ridiculous.


And rubber-soled shoes so you don't make distracting noise typing and so you look like an idiot.


That's a bloody travesty.

gulcregret
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Re: Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby gulcregret » Fri Jan 27, 2012 11:12 am

Also, no CLE requirements in MA; but VA requires 12 hours per year.

LawIdiot86
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Re: Where Should I Take the Bar?

Postby LawIdiot86 » Fri Jan 27, 2012 7:13 pm

gulcregret wrote:Also, no CLE requirements in MA; but VA requires 12 hours per year.

Unless I was actually going to practice law in VA (as opposed to work in DC and waive in from VA), I would take MD over VA (obviously there are better bars than MD, but comparatively). MD has no CLE and while their ethics requirement is slightly different, the bar exam is a bit easier.




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