Someone please help

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Demp984
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Someone please help

Postby Demp984 » Wed Feb 25, 2015 6:33 pm

Really Need Some Advice

Here is my dilemma: I am a non-traditional law student in my 3rd year of law school. When I was 18 years old, I went to my local community college for one semester but dropped out. About a year later, I joined the military and did 4 years. When enlisting in the military, I didn't even put that college down when doing the paperwork. From that point on, there was nothing to even suggest that I went to school there, and no paper trail whatsoever. The only people who knew I went there were the school and my parents. To be completely honest, I only omitted that school when signing up for the military because I didn't want to deal with the hassle of getting the transcripts. Fast forward to 4+ years later, and I had all but forgotten my 2 month stint in community college. Once I got out of the military, I went to two different colleges and didn't even think to tell either of them about the community college. I then completed my undergrad, applied to law school, listed the two schools I attended after the military, got accepted, and here I am in my third year of law school. So, I just happened to be hanging out with a few of my law school buddies and we were talking about the bar exam. We were talking about how if you are dishonest about anything on your law school application then its your ass. Even though I knew this already, the convo got me paranoid, so I started going back through my application to see if there was anything that I did wrong. My stomach dropped when it hit me that the school I attended almost 13 years ago wasn't on my application. I have not told anyone due to my paranoia, not even my friends (which is why I am on here). I do not know what to do and am petrified that if I do come clean about my mistake, then I could even have my undergrad degree put into question. I just would like to know what you guys would do in my situation. My knee jerk reaction was to come clean, but I also realize that nobody but the school I attended 13 years ago knows I was there. Thank you, hope someone can help.

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Ron Don Volante
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Re: Someone please help

Postby Ron Don Volante » Wed Feb 25, 2015 6:51 pm

well I think the common logic is to contact the state bar dude ASAP.

I doubt this would be a huge deal, either way, in itself. But it's also realistic to think people might have a hard time believing you "forgot" you attended a school when you were filling out LS apps that unequivocally told you to disclose every school you have ever attended.

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ballcaps
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Re: Someone please help

Postby ballcaps » Wed Feb 25, 2015 6:55 pm

why did you drop out? that seems relevant here, as your culpability depends on whether or not you were actively trying to hide something from law schools (e.g. bad grades.)

Demp984
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Re: Someone please help

Postby Demp984 » Wed Feb 25, 2015 7:02 pm

Ron Don Volante wrote:well I think the common logic is to contact the state bar dude ASAP.

I doubt this would be a huge deal, either way, in itself. But it's also realistic to think people might have a hard time believing you "forgot" you attended a school when you were filling out LS apps that unequivocally told you to disclose every school you have ever attended.


I understand the logic and have no issue with that. I would hope that my forgetfulness is displayed in the fact that it was 5 years between when I had my stint at CC and when I got out of the military, then enrolled in school. Then another 5 years before my law school application, for a total of 10 years. I know that school is something you don't just forget, but in this context it was one of the most insignificant experiences in my life- considering I spent 4 years in the military seeing battle, traveling the world, and numerous other endeavors. I also had a DUI and an underage alcohol related charge that I put on my law school application. I would find it odd that I would admit that but not admit a 2 month mistake at CC. Ah well, wishful thinking probably..

Demp984
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Re: Someone please help

Postby Demp984 » Wed Feb 25, 2015 7:06 pm

ballcaps wrote:why did you drop out? that seems relevant here, as your culpability depends on whether or not you were actively trying to hide something from law schools (e.g. bad grades.)


I didn't drop out for bad grades, my grades were probably middle of the road. I just wasn't ready, didn't know what I wanted to do with my life, blah blah...

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sublime
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Re: Someone please help

Postby sublime » Wed Feb 25, 2015 7:07 pm

..

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transferror
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Re: Someone please help

Postby transferror » Wed Feb 25, 2015 7:09 pm

The fact that grades were issued is a problem though, because it could have impacted everything from post-military UG admission to your LSAC GPA. Just contact the state bar or talk to a counselor at your law school. I'm not sure what will happen but acting now is the best thing you can do.

Demp984
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Re: Someone please help

Postby Demp984 » Wed Feb 25, 2015 7:30 pm

I don't really know how it would have affected my GPA as an undergrad. I doubt it would have ruined my GPA, but can't imagine it would have been helpful. Again, this was 13 years ago. I don't even remember the classes I took or whether my teachers were male or female..I do agree that grades being issued would be an issue but I am probably on a different fence than you guys think I am on. I am considering just finishing my JD, having both the UG and JD, then going on a different career path. I am not going to risk having the state bar report to my colleges that I went to CC for a whole 2 months (at the most), then dropped out. Then I would risk losing both degrees, not just my ability to practice law. I will probably try and find someone who has experience with this and discuss it anonymously.

Last thing, I still do not understand (logically) how there would be any way for them to find out. There is nothing to suggest I went there. It seems that the only way they could find out is if they contacted the CC, on a suspicion that I lied..which they have no reason to suspect, and further have no reason to suspect this specific school, even if they did suspect that I lied. If someone can articulate to me (based on the fact that there is nothing showing I went there) how they would find out, then I would appreciate that. Thank you so much.

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rnoodles
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Re: Someone please help

Postby rnoodles » Wed Feb 25, 2015 7:34 pm

Really, I would imagine that it'd only matter if you were issued grades other than a W. I assume there's no way you didn't get at least a W because of the amount of time you spent in the classes, but if you did get Fs, stop showing up without formally withdrawing then Failed, or got a WF, then I'd look into it further. Other than that, a W has no bearing on your UG GPA or LSAC GPA. And I doubt that either the state bar or your law school would care at this point about Ws you got at CC 13 or years ago considering how far you've come since then.

EDIT: Negated something I shouldn't have, and that would've been confusing. Sorry!

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Ron Don Volante
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Re: Someone please help

Postby Ron Don Volante » Wed Feb 25, 2015 8:30 pm

Demp984 wrote:I don't really know how it would have affected my GPA as an undergrad. I doubt it would have ruined my GPA, but can't imagine it would have been helpful. Again, this was 13 years ago. I don't even remember the classes I took or whether my teachers were male or female..I do agree that grades being issued would be an issue but I am probably on a different fence than you guys think I am on. I am considering just finishing my JD, having both the UG and JD, then going on a different career path. I am not going to risk having the state bar report to my colleges that I went to CC for a whole 2 months (at the most), then dropped out. Then I would risk losing both degrees, not just my ability to practice law. I will probably try and find someone who has experience with this and discuss it anonymously.

Last thing, I still do not understand (logically) how there would be any way for them to find out. There is nothing to suggest I went there. It seems that the only way they could find out is if they contacted the CC, on a suspicion that I lied..which they have no reason to suspect, and further have no reason to suspect this specific school, even if they did suspect that I lied. If someone can articulate to me (based on the fact that there is nothing showing I went there) how they would find out, then I would appreciate that. Thank you so much.

isn't there like some national clearinghouse thing that you're put into for every school you matriculate at? I would really, really try not to pull a fast one on your state bar.

Also I don't see any reason why your law school would still care. Or your UG.

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baal hadad
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Re: Someone please help

Postby baal hadad » Wed Feb 25, 2015 8:37 pm

Your law school will probs let you amend you app retroactively so it matches your bar disclosures

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Micdiddy
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Re: Someone please help

Postby Micdiddy » Thu Feb 26, 2015 1:41 am

baal hadad wrote:Your law school will probs let you amend you app retroactively so it matches your bar disclosures


This should be an option. Go talk to the Deab of students, or Dean, or whoever the approachable person is supposed to be here, and explain to them your mistake (basically tell them exactly what you posted in OP). There is no chance they will kick you out In a Fit of rage. More likely they will say "well, we'll amend your application and no big deal." At least that's how I think it would go...

shawn1234
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Re: Someone please help

Postby shawn1234 » Thu Feb 26, 2015 2:45 am

you are totally and completely fine. it has nothing to do with fraud… lying about grades, lying about schools, lying about criminal convictions, etc etc etc. the bar has so much more serious crap to deal with. you're fine. say you forgot. end of story. same thing happened to me. i sent a letter, said sorry my bad. done.

NotMyRealName09
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Re: Someone please help

Postby NotMyRealName09 » Thu Feb 26, 2015 10:19 pm

shawn1234 wrote:you are totally and completely fine. it has nothing to do with fraud… lying about grades, lying about schools, lying about criminal convictions, etc etc etc. the bar has so much more serious crap to deal with. you're fine. say you forgot. end of story. same thing happened to me. i sent a letter, said sorry my bad. done.


This absolutely. Just amend your law school app with a proper tone letter saying you forgot about it / were ashamed(?), whatever, but you didn't list it, you now know you made a mistake because your legal education has made you aware that the truth is paramount, here it is. Then disclose to the bar. Done done. They catch a white lie, they dig 'till they find a real one. You show them all your cards, they move on. Lay it down.

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Strangely Appealing
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Re: Someone please help

Postby Strangely Appealing » Thu Feb 26, 2015 10:31 pm

NotMyRealName09 wrote:
shawn1234 wrote:you are totally and completely fine. it has nothing to do with fraud… lying about grades, lying about schools, lying about criminal convictions, etc etc etc. the bar has so much more serious crap to deal with. you're fine. say you forgot. end of story. same thing happened to me. i sent a letter, said sorry my bad. done.


This absolutely. Just amend your law school app with a proper tone letter saying you forgot about it / were ashamed(?), whatever, but you didn't list it, you now know you made a mistake because your legal education has made you aware that the truth is paramount, here it is. Then disclose to the bar. Done done. They catch a white lie, they dig 'till they find a real one. You show them all your cards, they move on. Lay it down.


+1 Your truth is a good truth. Your bad's not a bad. Just get the recordkeeping straightened out.

k5220
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Re: Someone please help

Postby k5220 » Fri Feb 27, 2015 1:09 am

Definitely go to your law school before contacting the bar.

I disagree with the posters saying it's not a real problem, especially insofar as your time at community college would've affected the GPA you applied with. But I do think it's a problem you can address by going to your school now, explaining that you were going through your application with a fine tooth comb as C&F comes closer, and coming clean about making a mistake. Your school might be able to help you out, and even if they can't it would be better to have them behind you when you have to tell the bar.




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