2017 July California Bar

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SmokeytheBear
Posts: 857
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 1:40 pm

Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby SmokeytheBear » Tue Aug 01, 2017 5:32 pm

InterAlia1961 wrote:Over population of lawyers in California? I don't see it. I see hundreds of thousands of people who need legal advice, but can't access it because they can't afford it. I see rural areas with no lawyers, no courthouse, no way to access justice. If California is really as concerned with the rights and needs of immigrants and poor people, they'd admit more lawyers, not fewer.


That's not really how the market for legal services works.

34percent
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Jul 30, 2017 7:34 pm

Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby 34percent » Tue Aug 01, 2017 5:58 pm

a male human wrote:
catechumen wrote:Former CA levels? That is just not good enough. There is no reason the CA bar should be the hardest in the country. To put this in perspective there are states like Missouri that has a pass rate of something like 90%+ at times. Or states like Wisconsin that auto admit anyone who graduated from a Wisconsin law school... (IE 100% pass rate if you graduated from an in state law school...)

There is no need for the pass rate to be that high, but the pass rate should reflect how CA students compare to lawyers nationwide. Given that time and again CA students score higher on the MBE's and the ethics exam, the pass rate should reflect that CA students are better students than the national average, and thus allow for higher than national average pass rate. A pass rate between 70-75% seems not at all unreasonable, if not higher. This is a test of so called minim competence after all. That's a pretty low bar to clear... The standard should reflect that. Virtually everyone taking it already has a JD. This elitism and economic protectionism needs to end!


a male human wrote:
maxmartin wrote:1414 is such an odd number, I think the passing score will be between 1400 and 1420 with incremental 5 points. What is the regular Kx SoL? 2 years? If so, the court should at least make the new passing score retroactively for the past 2 years! :mrgreen:

I briefly skimmed through the memo posted earlier, and it seems like 1414 is one standard deviation away from mean of the distribution of scores (or something like that). I didn't read deeply enough to see the rationale behind choosing one standard deviation, but it seems like moving it to 1414 in simulation of past exams would have increased the pass rate by 5-15% or so depending on the demographic based on race, sex, accreditation. I think it was about 8% overall, which I think is pretty good and would restore the pass rates back to their former levels.

I see your point and understand the frustration, and the thing to keep in mind is that this is a case of "being demanding about something I never knew I needed."

Why are former CA levels not good enough? It's been accepted for decades, and it's in light of recent trends that the S.Ct. is reconsidering the proposal by the State Bar.

We like to talk about abysmal pass rates like 34.5%, but what most (including myself) don't like to talk about is that first timers at ABA-accredited schools have a pass rate of 65%-ish. Much higher if we look at high-ranking schools like Stanford or Boalt.

So one of the issues is CA allowing people who may not be ready to study law and graduate law school, almost like a "scam." These so-called California-accredited schools take people with LSATs in the 140s and GPAs below 3.0. Do you think they should be automatically admitted to the bar? I don't think so. And don't get me started about the overpopulation of lawyers in CA.

I'm not saying that you're incapable if you graduate from unnamed schools--not at all! I know at least one person who graduated from an unaccredited school and passed the CA bar in two tries. Two implications here: (1) Most of them will not pass easily. (2) Yet it is more than possible to pass the CA bar.

It's always been up to you, not some outside bureaucracy, not Barbri. This isn't just about knowing the law. It's about beating the test, not being minimally competent (although the bar for "minimum competence" has gone up the last few years). It teaches you to figure things out, to pass the bar, to better serve clients.

Or they're just evil; who knows? Sorry if I sound out of touch or condescending (passed 3 years ago after all). I would rather set a high standard for ourselves, and I'm here to offer help if people are willing to consider alternatives to fear.





I agree with what you're saying, and also agree with looking at the underlying stats, i.e. what you said about first time ABA schools and their pass rate.
Having passed on my second try, from a CBA school, at 41 years old, not having taken Barbri, I can say, this test can be passed, but it takes effort and dedication. I am totally opposed to lowering the score, even had I not passed I would be opposed to it. Having been in a school where I could look around the room and know who would never pass the bar, I believe that is the real issue, taking peoples money who have no chance to ever pass the bar, and thus allowing these students to drag down the %.

I am sure it's not what people in this forum want to hear, but I am filled with satisfaction knowing I passed the 3 day CA bar, and I will tell you this, if I can do it, anyone who actually studies can do it, but you have to study the right way. I think that many just don't know how to approach studying for it and law schools are shitty about that. But lowering the score, to allow unqualified people to pass, it just demeans the whole profession.

It makes me sad to see all these people hoping and wishing for lower scores, shouldn't the goal be to write better exams, for you to have a better understanding of the law. Let's face some facts of life, not everyone gets everything they want, some things, like being an attorney, take a ton of effort and even then some never pass. But don't give up, study hard, and regardless of the cut score, you can pass the test.

jman77
Posts: 594
Joined: Tue Feb 16, 2010 3:33 pm

Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby jman77 » Tue Aug 01, 2017 6:10 pm

34percent wrote:
a male human wrote:
catechumen wrote:Former CA levels? That is just not good enough. There is no reason the CA bar should be the hardest in the country. To put this in perspective there are states like Missouri that has a pass rate of something like 90%+ at times. Or states like Wisconsin that auto admit anyone who graduated from a Wisconsin law school... (IE 100% pass rate if you graduated from an in state law school...)

There is no need for the pass rate to be that high, but the pass rate should reflect how CA students compare to lawyers nationwide. Given that time and again CA students score higher on the MBE's and the ethics exam, the pass rate should reflect that CA students are better students than the national average, and thus allow for higher than national average pass rate. A pass rate between 70-75% seems not at all unreasonable, if not higher. This is a test of so called minim competence after all. That's a pretty low bar to clear... The standard should reflect that. Virtually everyone taking it already has a JD. This elitism and economic protectionism needs to end!


a male human wrote:
maxmartin wrote:1414 is such an odd number, I think the passing score will be between 1400 and 1420 with incremental 5 points. What is the regular Kx SoL? 2 years? If so, the court should at least make the new passing score retroactively for the past 2 years! :mrgreen:

I briefly skimmed through the memo posted earlier, and it seems like 1414 is one standard deviation away from mean of the distribution of scores (or something like that). I didn't read deeply enough to see the rationale behind choosing one standard deviation, but it seems like moving it to 1414 in simulation of past exams would have increased the pass rate by 5-15% or so depending on the demographic based on race, sex, accreditation. I think it was about 8% overall, which I think is pretty good and would restore the pass rates back to their former levels.

I see your point and understand the frustration, and the thing to keep in mind is that this is a case of "being demanding about something I never knew I needed."

Why are former CA levels not good enough? It's been accepted for decades, and it's in light of recent trends that the S.Ct. is reconsidering the proposal by the State Bar.

We like to talk about abysmal pass rates like 34.5%, but what most (including myself) don't like to talk about is that first timers at ABA-accredited schools have a pass rate of 65%-ish. Much higher if we look at high-ranking schools like Stanford or Boalt.

So one of the issues is CA allowing people who may not be ready to study law and graduate law school, almost like a "scam." These so-called California-accredited schools take people with LSATs in the 140s and GPAs below 3.0. Do you think they should be automatically admitted to the bar? I don't think so. And don't get me started about the overpopulation of lawyers in CA.

I'm not saying that you're incapable if you graduate from unnamed schools--not at all! I know at least one person who graduated from an unaccredited school and passed the CA bar in two tries. Two implications here: (1) Most of them will not pass easily. (2) Yet it is more than possible to pass the CA bar.

It's always been up to you, not some outside bureaucracy, not Barbri. This isn't just about knowing the law. It's about beating the test, not being minimally competent (although the bar for "minimum competence" has gone up the last few years). It teaches you to figure things out, to pass the bar, to better serve clients.

Or they're just evil; who knows? Sorry if I sound out of touch or condescending (passed 3 years ago after all). I would rather set a high standard for ourselves, and I'm here to offer help if people are willing to consider alternatives to fear.





I agree with what you're saying, and also agree with looking at the underlying stats, i.e. what you said about first time ABA schools and their pass rate.
Having passed on my second try, from a CBA school, at 41 years old, not having taken Barbri, I can say, this test can be passed, but it takes effort and dedication. I am totally opposed to lowering the score, even had I not passed I would be opposed to it. Having been in a school where I could look around the room and know who would never pass the bar, I believe that is the real issue, taking peoples money who have no chance to ever pass the bar, and thus allowing these students to drag down the %.

I am sure it's not what people in this forum want to hear, but I am filled with satisfaction knowing I passed the 3 day CA bar, and I will tell you this, if I can do it, anyone who actually studies can do it, but you have to study the right way. I think that many just don't know how to approach studying for it and law schools are shitty about that. But lowering the score, to allow unqualified people to pass, it just demeans the whole profession.

It makes me sad to see all these people hoping and wishing for lower scores, shouldn't the goal be to write better exams, for you to have a better understanding of the law. Let's face some facts of life, not everyone gets everything they want, some things, like being an attorney, take a ton of effort and even then some never pass. But don't give up, study hard, and regardless of the cut score, you can pass the test.


I am personally indifferent with respect to maintaining or lowering the cut score, but I don't think you completely understand the issue here. It's not so much a matter of letting unqualified people in as it is a question of whether the current cut score in CA is reasonable. Did you take a look at the summary of the study in the CA bar resolution/memo someone posted yesterday? CA's cut score is significantly higher than cut scores in most other jurisdictions (about 9-10 pts. higher) and there is only one other jurisdiction in the entire nation with a cut score approximating CA's.

The question is, is there really something unique about practicing law in CA that justifies the significantly higher cut score? Are transactions/cases more complex here than, say, in NY? The real issue is that it's likely that candidates who otherwise possess the minimum competency may be unjustifiably excluded from practicing in CA because of the higher cut score. The point is not to lower the cut score to the point where every Tom, Dick and Harry can get into the profession. Rather, the point is to lower it to a reasonable level so that people who are qualified are not unduly excluded.

If you think there is a legitimate reason the cut score in CA needs to be significantly higher than in other jurisdictions, I'd be interested to hear what you think that reason is.

ETA: I passed the 2014 NY bar and took the July 2017 CA bar.

LockBox
Posts: 399
Joined: Mon Jan 14, 2008 8:05 pm

Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby LockBox » Tue Aug 01, 2017 7:01 pm

jman77 wrote:
34percent wrote:
a male human wrote:
catechumen wrote:Former CA levels? That is just not good enough. There is no reason the CA bar should be the hardest in the country. To put this in perspective there are states like Missouri that has a pass rate of something like 90%+ at times. Or states like Wisconsin that auto admit anyone who graduated from a Wisconsin law school... (IE 100% pass rate if you graduated from an in state law school...)

There is no need for the pass rate to be that high, but the pass rate should reflect how CA students compare to lawyers nationwide. Given that time and again CA students score higher on the MBE's and the ethics exam, the pass rate should reflect that CA students are better students than the national average, and thus allow for higher than national average pass rate. A pass rate between 70-75% seems not at all unreasonable, if not higher. This is a test of so called minim competence after all. That's a pretty low bar to clear... The standard should reflect that. Virtually everyone taking it already has a JD. This elitism and economic protectionism needs to end!


a male human wrote:
maxmartin wrote:1414 is such an odd number, I think the passing score will be between 1400 and 1420 with incremental 5 points. What is the regular Kx SoL? 2 years? If so, the court should at least make the new passing score retroactively for the past 2 years! :mrgreen:

I briefly skimmed through the memo posted earlier, and it seems like 1414 is one standard deviation away from mean of the distribution of scores (or something like that). I didn't read deeply enough to see the rationale behind choosing one standard deviation, but it seems like moving it to 1414 in simulation of past exams would have increased the pass rate by 5-15% or so depending on the demographic based on race, sex, accreditation. I think it was about 8% overall, which I think is pretty good and would restore the pass rates back to their former levels.

I see your point and understand the frustration, and the thing to keep in mind is that this is a case of "being demanding about something I never knew I needed."

Why are former CA levels not good enough? It's been accepted for decades, and it's in light of recent trends that the S.Ct. is reconsidering the proposal by the State Bar.

We like to talk about abysmal pass rates like 34.5%, but what most (including myself) don't like to talk about is that first timers at ABA-accredited schools have a pass rate of 65%-ish. Much higher if we look at high-ranking schools like Stanford or Boalt.

So one of the issues is CA allowing people who may not be ready to study law and graduate law school, almost like a "scam." These so-called California-accredited schools take people with LSATs in the 140s and GPAs below 3.0. Do you think they should be automatically admitted to the bar? I don't think so. And don't get me started about the overpopulation of lawyers in CA.

I'm not saying that you're incapable if you graduate from unnamed schools--not at all! I know at least one person who graduated from an unaccredited school and passed the CA bar in two tries. Two implications here: (1) Most of them will not pass easily. (2) Yet it is more than possible to pass the CA bar.

It's always been up to you, not some outside bureaucracy, not Barbri. This isn't just about knowing the law. It's about beating the test, not being minimally competent (although the bar for "minimum competence" has gone up the last few years). It teaches you to figure things out, to pass the bar, to better serve clients.

Or they're just evil; who knows? Sorry if I sound out of touch or condescending (passed 3 years ago after all). I would rather set a high standard for ourselves, and I'm here to offer help if people are willing to consider alternatives to fear.





I agree with what you're saying, and also agree with looking at the underlying stats, i.e. what you said about first time ABA schools and their pass rate.
Having passed on my second try, from a CBA school, at 41 years old, not having taken Barbri, I can say, this test can be passed, but it takes effort and dedication. I am totally opposed to lowering the score, even had I not passed I would be opposed to it. Having been in a school where I could look around the room and know who would never pass the bar, I believe that is the real issue, taking peoples money who have no chance to ever pass the bar, and thus allowing these students to drag down the %.

I am sure it's not what people in this forum want to hear, but I am filled with satisfaction knowing I passed the 3 day CA bar, and I will tell you this, if I can do it, anyone who actually studies can do it, but you have to study the right way. I think that many just don't know how to approach studying for it and law schools are shitty about that. But lowering the score, to allow unqualified people to pass, it just demeans the whole profession.

It makes me sad to see all these people hoping and wishing for lower scores, shouldn't the goal be to write better exams, for you to have a better understanding of the law. Let's face some facts of life, not everyone gets everything they want, some things, like being an attorney, take a ton of effort and even then some never pass. But don't give up, study hard, and regardless of the cut score, you can pass the test.


I am personally indifferent with respect to maintaining or lowering the cut score, but I don't think you completely understand the issue here. It's not so much a matter of letting unqualified people in as it is a question of whether the current cut score in CA is reasonable. Did you take a look at the summary of the study in the CA bar resolution/memo someone posted yesterday? CA's cut score is significantly higher than cut scores in most other jurisdictions (about 9-10 pts. higher) and there is only one other jurisdiction in the entire nation with a cut score approximating CA's.

The question is, is there really something unique about practicing law in CA that justifies the significantly higher cut score? Are transactions/cases more complex here than, say, in NY? The real issue is that it's likely that candidates who otherwise possess the minimum competency may be unjustifiably excluded from practicing in CA because of the higher cut score. The point is not to lower the cut score to the point where every Tom, Dick and Harry can get into the profession. Rather, the point is to lower it to a reasonable level so that people who are qualified are not unduly excluded.

If you think there is a legitimate reason the cut score in CA needs to be significantly higher than in other jurisdictions, I'd be interested to hear what you think that reason is.

ETA: I passed the 2014 NY bar and took the July 2017 CA bar.


From my brief perusal of the study, it appears that CA allows more people to take the exam than other jurisdictions (e.g., students from Non-ABA or unaccredited schools, as well as those who "read" the law, whatever that means). So, it appears the question is where to set the cut score so that those who may be a danger to client's will not be admitted. I mean, obviously there are people who graduate from Stanford/Boalt who also fail the exam but that doesn't necessarily mean they are a danger to clients, just as those from non-accredited schools who don't pass may still be excellent attorneys.

ur_hero
Posts: 192
Joined: Sat Nov 19, 2016 6:52 pm

Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby ur_hero » Tue Aug 01, 2017 7:24 pm

jman77 wrote:
34percent wrote:
a male human wrote:
catechumen wrote:Former CA levels? That is just not good enough. There is no reason the CA bar should be the hardest in the country. To put this in perspective there are states like Missouri that has a pass rate of something like 90%+ at times. Or states like Wisconsin that auto admit anyone who graduated from a Wisconsin law school... (IE 100% pass rate if you graduated from an in state law school...)

There is no need for the pass rate to be that high, but the pass rate should reflect how CA students compare to lawyers nationwide. Given that time and again CA students score higher on the MBE's and the ethics exam, the pass rate should reflect that CA students are better students than the national average, and thus allow for higher than national average pass rate. A pass rate between 70-75% seems not at all unreasonable, if not higher. This is a test of so called minim competence after all. That's a pretty low bar to clear... The standard should reflect that. Virtually everyone taking it already has a JD. This elitism and economic protectionism needs to end!


a male human wrote:
maxmartin wrote:1414 is such an odd number, I think the passing score will be between 1400 and 1420 with incremental 5 points. What is the regular Kx SoL? 2 years? If so, the court should at least make the new passing score retroactively for the past 2 years! :mrgreen:

I briefly skimmed through the memo posted earlier, and it seems like 1414 is one standard deviation away from mean of the distribution of scores (or something like that). I didn't read deeply enough to see the rationale behind choosing one standard deviation, but it seems like moving it to 1414 in simulation of past exams would have increased the pass rate by 5-15% or so depending on the demographic based on race, sex, accreditation. I think it was about 8% overall, which I think is pretty good and would restore the pass rates back to their former levels.

I see your point and understand the frustration, and the thing to keep in mind is that this is a case of "being demanding about something I never knew I needed."

Why are former CA levels not good enough? It's been accepted for decades, and it's in light of recent trends that the S.Ct. is reconsidering the proposal by the State Bar.

We like to talk about abysmal pass rates like 34.5%, but what most (including myself) don't like to talk about is that first timers at ABA-accredited schools have a pass rate of 65%-ish. Much higher if we look at high-ranking schools like Stanford or Boalt.

So one of the issues is CA allowing people who may not be ready to study law and graduate law school, almost like a "scam." These so-called California-accredited schools take people with LSATs in the 140s and GPAs below 3.0. Do you think they should be automatically admitted to the bar? I don't think so. And don't get me started about the overpopulation of lawyers in CA.

I'm not saying that you're incapable if you graduate from unnamed schools--not at all! I know at least one person who graduated from an unaccredited school and passed the CA bar in two tries. Two implications here: (1) Most of them will not pass easily. (2) Yet it is more than possible to pass the CA bar.

It's always been up to you, not some outside bureaucracy, not Barbri. This isn't just about knowing the law. It's about beating the test, not being minimally competent (although the bar for "minimum competence" has gone up the last few years). It teaches you to figure things out, to pass the bar, to better serve clients.

Or they're just evil; who knows? Sorry if I sound out of touch or condescending (passed 3 years ago after all). I would rather set a high standard for ourselves, and I'm here to offer help if people are willing to consider alternatives to fear.





I agree with what you're saying, and also agree with looking at the underlying stats, i.e. what you said about first time ABA schools and their pass rate.
Having passed on my second try, from a CBA school, at 41 years old, not having taken Barbri, I can say, this test can be passed, but it takes effort and dedication. I am totally opposed to lowering the score, even had I not passed I would be opposed to it. Having been in a school where I could look around the room and know who would never pass the bar, I believe that is the real issue, taking peoples money who have no chance to ever pass the bar, and thus allowing these students to drag down the %.

I am sure it's not what people in this forum want to hear, but I am filled with satisfaction knowing I passed the 3 day CA bar, and I will tell you this, if I can do it, anyone who actually studies can do it, but you have to study the right way. I think that many just don't know how to approach studying for it and law schools are shitty about that. But lowering the score, to allow unqualified people to pass, it just demeans the whole profession.

It makes me sad to see all these people hoping and wishing for lower scores, shouldn't the goal be to write better exams, for you to have a better understanding of the law. Let's face some facts of life, not everyone gets everything they want, some things, like being an attorney, take a ton of effort and even then some never pass. But don't give up, study hard, and regardless of the cut score, you can pass the test.


I am personally indifferent with respect to maintaining or lowering the cut score, but I don't think you completely understand the issue here. It's not so much a matter of letting unqualified people in as it is a question of whether the current cut score in CA is reasonable. Did you take a look at the summary of the study in the CA bar resolution/memo someone posted yesterday? CA's cut score is significantly higher than cut scores in most other jurisdictions (about 9-10 pts. higher) and there is only one other jurisdiction in the entire nation with a cut score approximating CA's.

The question is, is there really something unique about practicing law in CA that justifies the significantly higher cut score? Are transactions/cases more complex here than, say, in NY? The real issue is that it's likely that candidates who otherwise possess the minimum competency may be unjustifiably excluded from practicing in CA because of the higher cut score. The point is not to lower the cut score to the point where every Tom, Dick and Harry can get into the profession. Rather, the point is to lower it to a reasonable level so that people who are qualified are not unduly excluded.

If you think there is a legitimate reason the cut score in CA needs to be significantly higher than in other jurisdictions, I'd be interested to hear what you think that reason is.

ETA: I passed the 2014 NY bar and took the July 2017 CA bar.


Have to second this. Sure, it felt good to pass the old-fashioned 3-day 1440 cut-score bar exam...But for all those concerned about a lower cut-score resulting in less than minimally competent attorneys, what about the fact that California test-takers are well-above the national MBE average but disproportionately fail anyways? [Hopefully, the exam restructuring will resolve this discrepancy]

Another question to consider is whether the bar exam so truly tests one's capacity to be a minimally qualified attorney? Personally, my work is heavily transactional/corporate/M&A-focused and the bar exam felt like a serious waste of time (I won't really take much personally from the experience other than pressure/stress/worry). I mean, I guess this might reflect some of what you go through at some points as a lawyer but it seems an inefficient allocation of time when I could be drafting agreements, doing research, etc. I worked at my firm while re-studying for the exam - and the bar exam felt like the worst kind of busy work. It's essentially monotonous repetition and memorization coupled with learning yet another standardized test in life. I understand there must be some sort of gatekeeper/threshold, but IF this is going to remain the bar exam as we know it.... it should at least be reasonable and weigh what one will learn from overcoming the hurdle/burden it imposes to enter the profession and the opportunity cost of where that time and effort could have otherwise gone.

jman77
Posts: 594
Joined: Tue Feb 16, 2010 3:33 pm

Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby jman77 » Tue Aug 01, 2017 7:40 pm

LockBox wrote:
jman77 wrote:
34percent wrote:
a male human wrote:
catechumen wrote:Former CA levels? That is just not good enough. There is no reason the CA bar should be the hardest in the country. To put this in perspective there are states like Missouri that has a pass rate of something like 90%+ at times. Or states like Wisconsin that auto admit anyone who graduated from a Wisconsin law school... (IE 100% pass rate if you graduated from an in state law school...)

There is no need for the pass rate to be that high, but the pass rate should reflect how CA students compare to lawyers nationwide. Given that time and again CA students score higher on the MBE's and the ethics exam, the pass rate should reflect that CA students are better students than the national average, and thus allow for higher than national average pass rate. A pass rate between 70-75% seems not at all unreasonable, if not higher. This is a test of so called minim competence after all. That's a pretty low bar to clear... The standard should reflect that. Virtually everyone taking it already has a JD. This elitism and economic protectionism needs to end!


a male human wrote:
maxmartin wrote:1414 is such an odd number, I think the passing score will be between 1400 and 1420 with incremental 5 points. What is the regular Kx SoL? 2 years? If so, the court should at least make the new passing score retroactively for the past 2 years! :mrgreen:

I briefly skimmed through the memo posted earlier, and it seems like 1414 is one standard deviation away from mean of the distribution of scores (or something like that). I didn't read deeply enough to see the rationale behind choosing one standard deviation, but it seems like moving it to 1414 in simulation of past exams would have increased the pass rate by 5-15% or so depending on the demographic based on race, sex, accreditation. I think it was about 8% overall, which I think is pretty good and would restore the pass rates back to their former levels.

I see your point and understand the frustration, and the thing to keep in mind is that this is a case of "being demanding about something I never knew I needed."

Why are former CA levels not good enough? It's been accepted for decades, and it's in light of recent trends that the S.Ct. is reconsidering the proposal by the State Bar.

We like to talk about abysmal pass rates like 34.5%, but what most (including myself) don't like to talk about is that first timers at ABA-accredited schools have a pass rate of 65%-ish. Much higher if we look at high-ranking schools like Stanford or Boalt.

So one of the issues is CA allowing people who may not be ready to study law and graduate law school, almost like a "scam." These so-called California-accredited schools take people with LSATs in the 140s and GPAs below 3.0. Do you think they should be automatically admitted to the bar? I don't think so. And don't get me started about the overpopulation of lawyers in CA.

I'm not saying that you're incapable if you graduate from unnamed schools--not at all! I know at least one person who graduated from an unaccredited school and passed the CA bar in two tries. Two implications here: (1) Most of them will not pass easily. (2) Yet it is more than possible to pass the CA bar.

It's always been up to you, not some outside bureaucracy, not Barbri. This isn't just about knowing the law. It's about beating the test, not being minimally competent (although the bar for "minimum competence" has gone up the last few years). It teaches you to figure things out, to pass the bar, to better serve clients.

Or they're just evil; who knows? Sorry if I sound out of touch or condescending (passed 3 years ago after all). I would rather set a high standard for ourselves, and I'm here to offer help if people are willing to consider alternatives to fear.





I agree with what you're saying, and also agree with looking at the underlying stats, i.e. what you said about first time ABA schools and their pass rate.
Having passed on my second try, from a CBA school, at 41 years old, not having taken Barbri, I can say, this test can be passed, but it takes effort and dedication. I am totally opposed to lowering the score, even had I not passed I would be opposed to it. Having been in a school where I could look around the room and know who would never pass the bar, I believe that is the real issue, taking peoples money who have no chance to ever pass the bar, and thus allowing these students to drag down the %.

I am sure it's not what people in this forum want to hear, but I am filled with satisfaction knowing I passed the 3 day CA bar, and I will tell you this, if I can do it, anyone who actually studies can do it, but you have to study the right way. I think that many just don't know how to approach studying for it and law schools are shitty about that. But lowering the score, to allow unqualified people to pass, it just demeans the whole profession.

It makes me sad to see all these people hoping and wishing for lower scores, shouldn't the goal be to write better exams, for you to have a better understanding of the law. Let's face some facts of life, not everyone gets everything they want, some things, like being an attorney, take a ton of effort and even then some never pass. But don't give up, study hard, and regardless of the cut score, you can pass the test.


I am personally indifferent with respect to maintaining or lowering the cut score, but I don't think you completely understand the issue here. It's not so much a matter of letting unqualified people in as it is a question of whether the current cut score in CA is reasonable. Did you take a look at the summary of the study in the CA bar resolution/memo someone posted yesterday? CA's cut score is significantly higher than cut scores in most other jurisdictions (about 9-10 pts. higher) and there is only one other jurisdiction in the entire nation with a cut score approximating CA's.

The question is, is there really something unique about practicing law in CA that justifies the significantly higher cut score? Are transactions/cases more complex here than, say, in NY? The real issue is that it's likely that candidates who otherwise possess the minimum competency may be unjustifiably excluded from practicing in CA because of the higher cut score. The point is not to lower the cut score to the point where every Tom, Dick and Harry can get into the profession. Rather, the point is to lower it to a reasonable level so that people who are qualified are not unduly excluded.

If you think there is a legitimate reason the cut score in CA needs to be significantly higher than in other jurisdictions, I'd be interested to hear what you think that reason is.

ETA: I passed the 2014 NY bar and took the July 2017 CA bar.


From my brief perusal of the study, it appears that CA allows more people to take the exam than other jurisdictions (e.g., students from Non-ABA or unaccredited schools, as well as those who "read" the law, whatever that means). So, it appears the question is where to set the cut score so that those who may be a danger to client's will not be admitted. I mean, obviously there are people who graduate from Stanford/Boalt who also fail the exam but that doesn't necessarily mean they are a danger to clients, just as those from non-accredited schools who don't pass may still be excellent attorneys.


To me, the fact that CA may have less stringent standards regarding who can sit for the bar does not justify setting the cut score at 9-10 points above the national average. I just don't see how said cut score will be more effective at weeding out the incompetent candidates compared to the national cut score mean. That is to say, setting the cut score at or close to the national mean will already weed out those who aren't competent to practice law (in theory, at least) and the marginal cut score will only serve to disqualify many who do have the minimum competency (again, in theory). Essentially, what CA has done is to set a minimum competency and then some threshold.

There just seems to be something inherently wrong with the concept of someone performing well enough to otherwise make it in most other jurisdictions being disqualified in CA. This was particularly true when the exams were still 3-day affairs (the test was already inherently tougher; the higher cut score was just overkill). Again, I'd be willing to change my position if someone can point out a legitimate reason the cut-off needs to be higher in CA compared to other jurisdictions (more sophisticated transactions in CA, the test is inherently easier, hence the need for a higher cut score, etc.). Or maybe only CA and DE have got it right and everyone else is wrong?

Shawn474
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Aug 01, 2017 10:15 pm

Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby Shawn474 » Tue Aug 01, 2017 10:21 pm

MPT Headings. Since it was a letter I didn't use headings.
Is that ok? How would that impact the grading?

caliguy93
Posts: 10
Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2017 4:47 pm

Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby caliguy93 » Tue Aug 01, 2017 11:52 pm

For the people against lowering the cut score..and to people who have already passed the bar and are practicing attorneys...

Can you please tell me one instance in the actual practice of law where you will be or have been cold called on any one of every legal subject without any help from other staff, online research, or notes?

Pleaae tell me a real life scenario where you will be dropped off for 2 or even 3 days with nothing but a ziplock bag filled with pens, pencils, highlighters, and ear plugs and expected to recite random and surprising areas of law you may never practice without any help or notes at all, all while knowing your future is at stake if you don't do it well enough.

Never, this exam is a hazing and nothing more. Anyone willing to endure it successfully will become an attorney, anyone who quits after a few attempts will never become an attorney. The exam has absolutely no bearing on how good of an attorney one will become.

There are some serious scholars out there who pass the bar on their first attempt yet have trouble getting clients because they have no business sense.

I personally know, one of my best friends actually, who is dumber than me, yet they eventually passed. And personally know, my roommate, who is much much smarter than me who has failed and just took her second attempt this last July.

We all know someone dumber that ha passed and know people who are smarter that have failed.

In the end, it doesn't even matter.. just like your grades in law school. No one cares once you get out, just like no one will care once your a lawyer.

34percent
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Jul 30, 2017 7:34 pm

Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby 34percent » Wed Aug 02, 2017 12:51 am

caliguy93 wrote:For the people against lowering the cut score..and to people who have already passed the bar and are practicing attorneys...

Can you please tell me one instance in the actual practice of law where you will be or have been cold called on any one of every legal subject without any help from other staff, online research, or notes?

Pleaae tell me a real life scenario where you will be dropped off for 2 or even 3 days with nothing but a ziplock bag filled with pens, pencils, highlighters, and ear plugs and expected to recite random and surprising areas of law you may never practice without any help or notes at all, all while knowing your future is at stake if you don't do it well enough.

Never, this exam is a hazing and nothing more. Anyone willing to endure it successfully will become an attorney, anyone who quits after a few attempts will never become an attorney. The exam has absolutely no bearing on how good of an attorney one will become.

There are some serious scholars out there who pass the bar on their first attempt yet have trouble getting clients because they have no business sense.

I personally know, one of my best friends actually, who is dumber than me, yet they eventually passed. And personally know, my roommate, who is much much smarter than me who has failed and just took her second attempt this last July.

We all know someone dumber that ha passed and know people who are smarter that have failed.

In the end, it doesn't even matter.. just like your grades in law school. No one cares once you get out, just like no one will care once your a lawyer.




I agree with this, sort of. The test is what the test is, a bag of pens and your knowledge. While you may never encounter a real life situation like it, the concepts that they test, "thinking like a lawyer" is something I use every single day. Like I have said above, the test is passable, but it takes a specific way of studying and writing to pass it.

As for the score, I think that CA having one of the higher cut scores, I think Delaware has the highest, is par for the course as far as population and schools. I look at some other states where only 200 people are taking the bar, should that matter, I don't know. All I know is that the test is what the test is, a test designed to test the minimum competency. When I failed the first time I knew walking out that I had missed a lot of things, the second time, having studied the correct way, I went in feeling that whatever they threw at me I would be able to write on because I knew that I was expected to write as a lawyer, I knew it didn't matter if I knew everything, I had to fake my way through it, make up rules, do the analysis, and hit that minimum threshold. And I think that's really what they want to see, the ability of the test taker to push through it. I too know dumb people that have passed, I include myself in that, and smart people who have failed. And what that has shown me is it's about how you carry yourself through the test. Dr. Sacassuo said that the test was 50% what you wrote, 50% they way you wrote it and I really agree with that. It's about swagger.

So to address your actual question, I might always be able to look things up, but there are times when I am in court, and I do criminal law, that I do need to think on my feet, analogize the cases being thrown at me, turn the argument, and work for my client, that's the same skill set I used on the bar.

But other than that I agree, it's a shitty test that no one cares about after you pass it, just like your grades in law school.

I think once you pass the test, and remember how you felt walking out of that test, you'll see that the cut score, whatever it is, was appropriate. I wish everyone success and really believe passing is possible. You just have to find what works for you and hit your groove.

jman77
Posts: 594
Joined: Tue Feb 16, 2010 3:33 pm

Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby jman77 » Wed Aug 02, 2017 2:17 am

34percent wrote:
caliguy93 wrote:For the people against lowering the cut score..and to people who have already passed the bar and are practicing attorneys...

Can you please tell me one instance in the actual practice of law where you will be or have been cold called on any one of every legal subject without any help from other staff, online research, or notes?

Pleaae tell me a real life scenario where you will be dropped off for 2 or even 3 days with nothing but a ziplock bag filled with pens, pencils, highlighters, and ear plugs and expected to recite random and surprising areas of law you may never practice without any help or notes at all, all while knowing your future is at stake if you don't do it well enough.

Never, this exam is a hazing and nothing more. Anyone willing to endure it successfully will become an attorney, anyone who quits after a few attempts will never become an attorney. The exam has absolutely no bearing on how good of an attorney one will become.

There are some serious scholars out there who pass the bar on their first attempt yet have trouble getting clients because they have no business sense.

I personally know, one of my best friends actually, who is dumber than me, yet they eventually passed. And personally know, my roommate, who is much much smarter than me who has failed and just took her second attempt this last July.

We all know someone dumber that ha passed and know people who are smarter that have failed.

In the end, it doesn't even matter.. just like your grades in law school. No one cares once you get out, just like no one will care once your a lawyer.




I agree with this, sort of. The test is what the test is, a bag of pens and your knowledge. While you may never encounter a real life situation like it, the concepts that they test, "thinking like a lawyer" is something I use every single day. Like I have said above, the test is passable, but it takes a specific way of studying and writing to pass it.

As for the score, I think that CA having one of the higher cut scores, I think Delaware has the highest, is par for the course as far as population and schools. I look at some other states where only 200 people are taking the bar, should that matter, I don't know. All I know is that the test is what the test is, a test designed to test the minimum competency. When I failed the first time I knew walking out that I had missed a lot of things, the second time, having studied the correct way, I went in feeling that whatever they threw at me I would be able to write on because I knew that I was expected to write as a lawyer, I knew it didn't matter if I knew everything, I had to fake my way through it, make up rules, do the analysis, and hit that minimum threshold. And I think that's really what they want to see, the ability of the test taker to push through it. I too know dumb people that have passed, I include myself in that, and smart people who have failed. And what that has shown me is it's about how you carry yourself through the test. Dr. Sacassuo said that the test was 50% what you wrote, 50% they way you wrote it and I really agree with that. It's about swagger.

So to address your actual question, I might always be able to look things up, but there are times when I am in court, and I do criminal law, that I do need to think on my feet, analogize the cases being thrown at me, turn the argument, and work for my client, that's the same skill set I used on the bar.

But other than that I agree, it's a shitty test that no one cares about after you pass it, just like your grades in law school.

I think once you pass the test, and remember how you felt walking out of that test, you'll see that the cut score, whatever it is, was appropriate. I wish everyone success and really believe passing is possible. You just have to find what works for you and hit your groove.


Some perspective on the cut scores: http://www.latimes.com/opinion/op-ed/la ... story.html

"The California bar exam has historically had the highest cut score of any state, consistently resulting in the nation’s lowest pass rates. In July 2016, California’s pass rate reached a record low 62% for graduates of American Bar Assn.-accredited law schools. New York’s was 83%."

"Was New York truly allowing unqualified lawyers to practice? Did the State Bar of California have research indicating that its cut score of 144 was more protective of the public than New York’s 133?"

"Several of us later testified on the subject at a hearing before the California Assembly’s Judiciary Committee, where Elizabeth Rindskopf Parker, the state bar’s executive director, told the committee that “there is no good answer” for why the California cut score is so high."

"At the Judiciary Committee hearing, a representative of the California bar was asked how many exam takers fell between New York’s passing score and California’s. The answer was 1,789. That is, there were 1,789 individuals who would have begun their careers in New York but who have instead had their lives profoundly disrupted in California."

If the argument is that the higher cut score is due to higher populations in certain jurisdictions compared to others, then the argument is essentially saying that the purpose of the bar exam is not to weed out those who do not possess the minimum competency to protect clients, but to protect those who are already "in the club" by minimizing the number of people who can get in, at the cost of excluding many who do in fact possess the minimum competency. That involves an entirely different discussion.

Of course if one passes the cut score becomes moot to that person. That doesn't make the cut score valid. The question is whether that person should be able to pass with a 135 like in most other jurisdictions (or maybe somewhere between 135 and 144), or whether there is some compelling reason said person should not be allowed to pass unless (s)he gets a 144.

maxmartin
Posts: 671
Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2011 5:41 pm

Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby maxmartin » Wed Aug 02, 2017 2:33 am

jman77 wrote:
34percent wrote:
caliguy93 wrote:For the people against lowering the cut score..and to people who have already passed the bar and are practicing attorneys...

Can you please tell me one instance in the actual practice of law where you will be or have been cold called on any one of every legal subject without any help from other staff, online research, or notes?

Pleaae tell me a real life scenario where you will be dropped off for 2 or even 3 days with nothing but a ziplock bag filled with pens, pencils, highlighters, and ear plugs and expected to recite random and surprising areas of law you may never practice without any help or notes at all, all while knowing your future is at stake if you don't do it well enough.

Never, this exam is a hazing and nothing more. Anyone willing to endure it successfully will become an attorney, anyone who quits after a few attempts will never become an attorney. The exam has absolutely no bearing on how good of an attorney one will become.

There are some serious scholars out there who pass the bar on their first attempt yet have trouble getting clients because they have no business sense.

I personally know, one of my best friends actually, who is dumber than me, yet they eventually passed. And personally know, my roommate, who is much much smarter than me who has failed and just took her second attempt this last July.

We all know someone dumber that ha passed and know people who are smarter that have failed.

In the end, it doesn't even matter.. just like your grades in law school. No one cares once you get out, just like no one will care once your a lawyer.




I agree with this, sort of. The test is what the test is, a bag of pens and your knowledge. While you may never encounter a real life situation like it, the concepts that they test, "thinking like a lawyer" is something I use every single day. Like I have said above, the test is passable, but it takes a specific way of studying and writing to pass it.

As for the score, I think that CA having one of the higher cut scores, I think Delaware has the highest, is par for the course as far as population and schools. I look at some other states where only 200 people are taking the bar, should that matter, I don't know. All I know is that the test is what the test is, a test designed to test the minimum competency. When I failed the first time I knew walking out that I had missed a lot of things, the second time, having studied the correct way, I went in feeling that whatever they threw at me I would be able to write on because I knew that I was expected to write as a lawyer, I knew it didn't matter if I knew everything, I had to fake my way through it, make up rules, do the analysis, and hit that minimum threshold. And I think that's really what they want to see, the ability of the test taker to push through it. I too know dumb people that have passed, I include myself in that, and smart people who have failed. And what that has shown me is it's about how you carry yourself through the test. Dr. Sacassuo said that the test was 50% what you wrote, 50% they way you wrote it and I really agree with that. It's about swagger.

So to address your actual question, I might always be able to look things up, but there are times when I am in court, and I do criminal law, that I do need to think on my feet, analogize the cases being thrown at me, turn the argument, and work for my client, that's the same skill set I used on the bar.

But other than that I agree, it's a shitty test that no one cares about after you pass it, just like your grades in law school.

I think once you pass the test, and remember how you felt walking out of that test, you'll see that the cut score, whatever it is, was appropriate. I wish everyone success and really believe passing is possible. You just have to find what works for you and hit your groove.


Some perspective on the cut scores: http://www.latimes.com/opinion/op-ed/la ... story.html

"The California bar exam has historically had the highest cut score of any state, consistently resulting in the nation’s lowest pass rates. In July 2016, California’s pass rate reached a record low 62% for graduates of American Bar Assn.-accredited law schools. New York’s was 83%."

"Was New York truly allowing unqualified lawyers to practice? Did the State Bar of California have research indicating that its cut score of 144 was more protective of the public than New York’s 133?"

"Several of us later testified on the subject at a hearing before the California Assembly’s Judiciary Committee, where Elizabeth Rindskopf Parker, the state bar’s executive director, told the committee that “there is no good answer” for why the California cut score is so high."

"At the Judiciary Committee hearing, a representative of the California bar was asked how many exam takers fell between New York’s passing score and California’s. The answer was 1,789. That is, there were 1,789 individuals who would have begun their careers in New York but who have instead had their lives profoundly disrupted in California."

If the argument is that the higher cut score is due to higher populations in certain jurisdictions compared to others, then the argument is essentially saying that the purpose of the bar exam is not to weed out those who do not possess the minimum competency to protect clients, but to protect those who are already "in the club" by minimizing the number of people who can get in, at the cost of excluding many who do in fact possess the minimum competency. That involves an entirely different discussion.

Of course if one passes it becomes moot to that person what the cut score was. The question is should that person be able to pass with a 135 like in most other jurisdictions, or is there some compelling reason said person should not be allowed to pass unless (s)he gets a 144 (or maybe a score that lies somewhere in the middle)?


It is not just passing scores. It matters much more how jurisdiction grades the essay. CA is very tough on the essay grading. I failed CA, but passed a UBE jurisdiction with only one week preparation, LMAO.

maxmartin
Posts: 671
Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2011 5:41 pm

Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby maxmartin » Wed Aug 02, 2017 2:39 am

Essay grading is so arbitrary, one paper finds out that for every two graders that marked the essay a PASS, one grader marked it a FAIL. Hopefully 50% will make the situation better.

JoeSeperac wrote:
Sorry, no clue about the new score system, but there is a great paper on the CA score system from 1977:
http://www.seaphe.org/pdf/past-bar-rese ... ations.pdf

One of the most interesting findings from this paper was that when they gave the same examinee's essay to all the graders (without telling them) to see how consistent they were (the graders were told to mark each essay pass or fail), they found that the graders were consistent only 67% of the time (i.e. for every two graders that marked the essay a PASS, one grader marked it a FAIL).

My personal opinion is that CA will switch to the UBE in a few years (the switch from a 3-day exam to a 2-day exam was rather suggestive of this). The big states are eventually going to all fall in line (e.g. Illinois is currently considering the UBE and will probably be the next big jurisdiction to switch).

Slickrick90
Posts: 26
Joined: Sat Nov 19, 2016 11:37 am

Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby Slickrick90 » Wed Aug 02, 2017 8:44 am

SmokeytheBear wrote:
InterAlia1961 wrote:Over population of lawyers in California? I don't see it. I see hundreds of thousands of people who need legal advice, but can't access it because they can't afford it. I see rural areas with no lawyers, no courthouse, no way to access justice. If California is really as concerned with the rights and needs of immigrants and poor people, they'd admit more lawyers, not fewer.


That's not really how the market for legal services works.


I'm a few years into practice and when I was in my first year at a biglaw firm, a Sr. Associate gave me two nuggets of advice that I thought was really helpful. One was that being a biglaw associate was like being an NFL runningback. Most people only last 3-4 years. Only the rare few make it to partner.

The other was to not to take any assignment personally. What I mean is that, if big bad GM needs help arguing that they were right in saving .25 cents that may have lead to the death of 50 individuals, you make the strongest (ethical) argument possible, regardless of whether you think that they are a piece of shit. If you get repulsed easily and cannot do the work properly then perhaps biglaw is not for you and that you should leave as soon as possible. He then told me that while assignments may repulse you, the big boys and big companies pay the bills. Unfortunately the "little guy" doesn't have enough money to pay the bills. Outside of class actions, if you want to make big money, biglaw is the easiest way to get a steady paycheck.

I think that goes to the heart of the problem. A lot of people want to help poor people, but there really is very little money in helping poor people. How much in legal fees do you think there is in a 1000 dollar landlord tenant dispute, or a divorce proceeding for people with 5,000 in assets? Unlike doctors, there isn't a strong form of government subsidies to help poor people. If I could make half the money helping poor people, I probably would and many of my classmates would as well. In addition, people have to remember that a lot ot people have 100k in student loans. Perhaps if law school was 10k a year or less, there would be more legal services for poor people. Ironically it is the law schools themselves that are actually playing a role in legal services not being accessible.

User avatar
a male human
Posts: 1875
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby a male human » Wed Aug 02, 2017 2:38 pm

caliguy93 wrote:For the people against lowering the cut score..and to people who have already passed the bar and are practicing attorneys...

Can you please tell me one instance in the actual practice of law where you will be or have been cold called on any one of every legal subject without any help from other staff, online research, or notes?

Pleaae tell me a real life scenario where you will be dropped off for 2 or even 3 days with nothing but a ziplock bag filled with pens, pencils, highlighters, and ear plugs and expected to recite random and surprising areas of law you may never practice without any help or notes at all, all while knowing your future is at stake if you don't do it well enough.

Never, this exam is a hazing and nothing more. Anyone willing to endure it successfully will become an attorney, anyone who quits after a few attempts will never become an attorney. The exam has absolutely no bearing on how good of an attorney one will become.

There are some serious scholars out there who pass the bar on their first attempt yet have trouble getting clients because they have no business sense.

I personally know, one of my best friends actually, who is dumber than me, yet they eventually passed. And personally know, my roommate, who is much much smarter than me who has failed and just took her second attempt this last July.

We all know someone dumber that ha passed and know people who are smarter that have failed.

In the end, it doesn't even matter.. just like your grades in law school. No one cares once you get out, just like no one will care once your a lawyer.

I agree it's yet another convenient filter to divide up candidates, like your GPA, class rank, and school rank.

No, I don't use anything I learned from the bar exam in my practice, but it's nice to have the background knowledge. Having some ethics background in particular is practical. Civ Pro or Evidence if you're going into litigation. Maybe Contracts for transactional. Almost everything is learned on the job (also true for many professions outside of law, such as engineering) because the work you do is tailored to what the organization does.

But I can tell you I personally benefited so much from failing once (and continuing to fail at work etc.) because it was so painful. I realized I was just taking things too easy and nonchalantly. It was an opportunity for personal growth. I changed my approach and saw what it took to achieve a serious endeavor and realize the potential I didn't know I had. If the me from 2013 had been allowed to pass with his mid-1300s score, he probably would have floated around in even more mediocrity in the "real world."

I don't have an issue with lowering the cut score per se, but I defer to the bureaus and their evaluations; you won't be able to change it anyway.

personofinterest
Posts: 134
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby personofinterest » Wed Aug 02, 2017 2:46 pm

Slickrick90 wrote:
SmokeytheBear wrote:
InterAlia1961 wrote:Over population of lawyers in California? I don't see it. I see hundreds of thousands of people who need legal advice, but can't access it because they can't afford it. I see rural areas with no lawyers, no courthouse, no way to access justice. If California is really as concerned with the rights and needs of immigrants and poor people, they'd admit more lawyers, not fewer.


That's not really how the market for legal services works.


I'm a few years into practice and when I was in my first year at a biglaw firm, a Sr. Associate gave me two nuggets of advice that I thought was really helpful. One was that being a biglaw associate was like being an NFL runningback. Most people only last 3-4 years. Only the rare few make it to partner.

The other was to not to take any assignment personally. What I mean is that, if big bad GM needs help arguing that they were right in saving .25 cents that may have lead to the death of 50 individuals, you make the strongest (ethical) argument possible, regardless of whether you think that they are a piece of shit. If you get repulsed easily and cannot do the work properly then perhaps biglaw is not for you and that you should leave as soon as possible. He then told me that while assignments may repulse you, the big boys and big companies pay the bills. Unfortunately the "little guy" doesn't have enough money to pay the bills. Outside of class actions, if you want to make big money, biglaw is the easiest way to get a steady paycheck.

I think that goes to the heart of the problem. A lot of people want to help poor people, but there really is very little money in helping poor people. How much in legal fees do you think there is in a 1000 dollar landlord tenant dispute, or a divorce proceeding for people with 5,000 in assets? Unlike doctors, there isn't a strong form of government subsidies to help poor people. If I could make half the money helping poor people, I probably would and many of my classmates would as well. In addition, people have to remember that a lot ot people have 100k in student loans. Perhaps if law school was 10k a year or less, there would be more legal services for poor people. Ironically it is the law schools themselves that are actually playing a role in legal services not being accessible.


Comparing to lawyers to doctors, it is much easier for doctors to help the poor because the government foots the bill. If there were similarly-enormous legal programs like medicare and medicaid, then there would be a lot more opportunity for lawyers to work for the poor. I'm not suggesting that our government should necessarily do this, but I think that it would take collective action (government) to really provide poor people with better legal services.

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BulletTooth
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby BulletTooth » Wed Aug 02, 2017 4:45 pm

Shawn474 wrote:MPT Headings. Since it was a letter I didn't use headings.
Is that ok? How would that impact the grading?


viewtopic.php?p=10101560#p10101560

InterAlia1961
Posts: 183
Joined: Tue Feb 28, 2017 3:32 pm

Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby InterAlia1961 » Wed Aug 02, 2017 4:49 pm

ManoftheHour wrote:I could be wrong here, but to me that was totally a negligence question. Lots of proximate cause to discuss. The stuff about the alternative product was used to talk extensively about breach/duty/standard of care (B<LP shit). Custom and alt product are factors but not determinant. Idk like I said I could be wrong...

Edit: Aight I'm gonna stop reading this stuff. I left the exam feeling pretty good and now I'm starting to have doubts. Need to focus on the MBE tomorrow.


I discussed proximate cause at length. Is is foreseeable that a downed power line would ignite a piece of paper that would then be carried by the wind and burn someone's house down? Yes. I also argued SPL. It was obvious that was what the numbers were for. In order to prevail on a defective design claim, P must show there are no other economically feasible alternatives and the current design is favored by the risk/utility test. I can see where a brief discussion of ADA might have been beneficial, though.

InterAlia1961
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby InterAlia1961 » Wed Aug 02, 2017 5:01 pm

nsv wrote:Did everyone address hearsay on the second question?


I did. Wendy's statements were both irrelevant and complete hearsay.

longtimelurker123
Posts: 27
Joined: Thu Feb 25, 2016 5:06 pm

Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby longtimelurker123 » Wed Aug 02, 2017 5:41 pm

InterAlia1961 wrote:
nsv wrote:Did everyone address hearsay on the second question?


I did. Wendy's statements were both irrelevant and complete hearsay.


I did too. I didn't at first -- thinking it wasn't an evidence question but after I finished the 3rd Q, I went back and just dropped it in.

mcmand
Posts: 398
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby mcmand » Wed Aug 02, 2017 5:53 pm

a male human wrote:
caliguy93 wrote:For the people against lowering the cut score..and to people who have already passed the bar and are practicing attorneys...

Can you please tell me one instance in the actual practice of law where you will be or have been cold called on any one of every legal subject without any help from other staff, online research, or notes?

Pleaae tell me a real life scenario where you will be dropped off for 2 or even 3 days with nothing but a ziplock bag filled with pens, pencils, highlighters, and ear plugs and expected to recite random and surprising areas of law you may never practice without any help or notes at all, all while knowing your future is at stake if you don't do it well enough.

Never, this exam is a hazing and nothing more. Anyone willing to endure it successfully will become an attorney, anyone who quits after a few attempts will never become an attorney. The exam has absolutely no bearing on how good of an attorney one will become.

There are some serious scholars out there who pass the bar on their first attempt yet have trouble getting clients because they have no business sense.

I personally know, one of my best friends actually, who is dumber than me, yet they eventually passed. And personally know, my roommate, who is much much smarter than me who has failed and just took her second attempt this last July.

We all know someone dumber that ha passed and know people who are smarter that have failed.

In the end, it doesn't even matter.. just like your grades in law school. No one cares once you get out, just like no one will care once your a lawyer.

I agree it's yet another convenient filter to divide up candidates, like your GPA, class rank, and school rank.

No, I don't use anything I learned from the bar exam in my practice, but it's nice to have the background knowledge. Having some ethics background in particular is practical. Civ Pro or Evidence if you're going into litigation. Maybe Contracts for transactional. Almost everything is learned on the job (also true for many professions outside of law, such as engineering) because the work you do is tailored to what the organization does.

But I can tell you I personally benefited so much from failing once (and continuing to fail at work etc.) because it was so painful. I realized I was just taking things too easy and nonchalantly. It was an opportunity for personal growth. I changed my approach and saw what it took to achieve a serious endeavor and realize the potential I didn't know I had. If the me from 2013 had been allowed to pass with his mid-1300s score, he probably would have floated around in even more mediocrity in the "real world."

I don't have an issue with lowering the cut score per se, but I defer to the bureaus and their evaluations; you won't be able to change it anyway.


Is personal growth really a valid justification for maintaining a test that by all appearances is not the best way to ensure attorney competency?
The entire test should be thrown out. The people designing it keep leaning on the faulty assumption that rote memorization is the way to ensure minimum competency. The outcomes for clients don't bear that out, nor do the discipline cases filed every year.
The closest thing to what attorneys do would be the performance test. We should be exploring expanding it, not lowering the score on a test that is, at best, a placebo for ensuring good attorneys, and at worst, an anti-competitive effort to limit real competition in the profession.

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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby a male human » Wed Aug 02, 2017 8:15 pm

mcmand wrote:
a male human wrote:
caliguy93 wrote:For the people against lowering the cut score..and to people who have already passed the bar and are practicing attorneys...

Can you please tell me one instance in the actual practice of law where you will be or have been cold called on any one of every legal subject without any help from other staff, online research, or notes?

Pleaae tell me a real life scenario where you will be dropped off for 2 or even 3 days with nothing but a ziplock bag filled with pens, pencils, highlighters, and ear plugs and expected to recite random and surprising areas of law you may never practice without any help or notes at all, all while knowing your future is at stake if you don't do it well enough.

Never, this exam is a hazing and nothing more. Anyone willing to endure it successfully will become an attorney, anyone who quits after a few attempts will never become an attorney. The exam has absolutely no bearing on how good of an attorney one will become.

There are some serious scholars out there who pass the bar on their first attempt yet have trouble getting clients because they have no business sense.

I personally know, one of my best friends actually, who is dumber than me, yet they eventually passed. And personally know, my roommate, who is much much smarter than me who has failed and just took her second attempt this last July.

We all know someone dumber that ha passed and know people who are smarter that have failed.

In the end, it doesn't even matter.. just like your grades in law school. No one cares once you get out, just like no one will care once your a lawyer.

I agree it's yet another convenient filter to divide up candidates, like your GPA, class rank, and school rank.

No, I don't use anything I learned from the bar exam in my practice, but it's nice to have the background knowledge. Having some ethics background in particular is practical. Civ Pro or Evidence if you're going into litigation. Maybe Contracts for transactional. Almost everything is learned on the job (also true for many professions outside of law, such as engineering) because the work you do is tailored to what the organization does.

But I can tell you I personally benefited so much from failing once (and continuing to fail at work etc.) because it was so painful. I realized I was just taking things too easy and nonchalantly. It was an opportunity for personal growth. I changed my approach and saw what it took to achieve a serious endeavor and realize the potential I didn't know I had. If the me from 2013 had been allowed to pass with his mid-1300s score, he probably would have floated around in even more mediocrity in the "real world."

I don't have an issue with lowering the cut score per se, but I defer to the bureaus and their evaluations; you won't be able to change it anyway.


Is personal growth really a valid justification for maintaining a test that by all appearances is not the best way to ensure attorney competency?
The entire test should be thrown out. The people designing it keep leaning on the faulty assumption that rote memorization is the way to ensure minimum competency. The outcomes for clients don't bear that out, nor do the discipline cases filed every year.
The closest thing to what attorneys do would be the performance test. We should be exploring expanding it, not lowering the score on a test that is, at best, a placebo for ensuring good attorneys, and at worst, an anti-competitive effort to limit real competition in the profession.

I agreed with the previous poster and added in my own personal perspective, and the latter is all you focus on? This is part of what I actually have an issue with: people taking a concession (proposed lowering of scores) and clamoring for even more because they can't get enough of something they didn't even expect or knew they wanted in the first place.

Take out my personal story from the above and see if you still have an issue with my post.

To explicitly answer your question, no, personal growth is not a justification for maintaining a test. It's just a personal side benefit I saw, and I don't expect everyone to find it compelling because I myself wouldn't deliberately put myself through it again for "personal growth."

By the way, I don't think the people designing the tests want people to simply rote memorize. That's more of the assumption of students (mostly) and schools and bar courses. It's an assumption so strong (for good reason since it's a requirement) that many people don't think there's any other way to go about it until they get burned and hopefully decide to try something else. And the cycle continues every year. Yes, it would be great if the test were easier to pass, but it's not exactly the fault of the examiners for not rolling out the red carpet.

dredd16
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby dredd16 » Thu Aug 03, 2017 9:24 am

a male human wrote:But I can tell you I personally benefited so much from failing once (and continuing to fail at work etc.) because it was so painful. I realized I was just taking things too easy and nonchalantly. It was an opportunity for personal growth. I changed my approach and saw what it took to achieve a serious endeavor and realize the potential I didn't know I had. If the me from 2013 had been allowed to pass with his mid-1300s score, he probably would have floated around in even more mediocrity in the "real world."


I second this as a second time taker/passer.

Blossomray
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby Blossomray » Thu Aug 03, 2017 11:44 am

So you just skipped talking about qualified/absolute work product (which is civ pro) altogether on 2a and 2b on that question? Yikes.

InterAlia1961 wrote:
Slickrick90 wrote:
Blossomray wrote:
caliguy93 wrote:
Dee099 wrote:A valid argument but not enough to convince me Evidence didn't apply, or even some Civ Pro.

November is only light years away, so well know soon.


unfortunately, there is never a case where they test a subject twice, and we had a full civ pro question. so there is zero chance that the question had a civ pro crossover even though i agree, motion to compel and work product for discovery reason all fall under it. You had to Know Civ pro for it, but they are grading it for PR.

My tutor told me that in fact patterns, if there just isn't enough facts to support the header you are analyzing, then chances are its not relevant. From what i hear regarding your guys analysis for evidence, a lot of people had to make lots of assumptions that were not in the fact pattern to discuss evidence issues such as relevance, authentication, business records, or anything else for the elements of exceptions to hearsay.

If you have to assume too many facts, or don't have much facts to support a potential issue, chances are its not an issue for the exam... as such evidence would fall into that category and is ultimately a deciding factor for me that it was not an evidence question.

i can see how anyone can fall down that rabbit hole, as when i read the calls of the question first i couldn't decide whether it was evidence, civ pro or PR and didn't figure it out until i read the entire fact pattern.



You're going to feel very silly come November. Attorney-client privilege is purely an evidentiary issue. Work product is a discovery issue and therefore a civ pro issue. You are correct that PR was an issue to discuss, but it was only an issue in the third question that asked about ethical violations. Given that the first question asked whether the judge should compel testimony and didn't specify deposition testimony, hearsay and other evidentiary issues were entirely appropriate (though collateral) issues to discuss. I saw your comment that in your opinion, work product and privilege are PR issues. Unfortunately, this isn't a matter of opinion. This was a cross-over question between CA evidence, CA civ pro, and PR. You can confirm this information with your tutor. ;)


I hope you are right. That's how I felt too.


Question 2 was straight up CA evidence and PR. It was not a CivPro question. The first call was testing whether you could tell who the client was and whether it was relevant. The attorney could testify because his client was not the defendant. The second call was also testing relevancy. Wendy's testimony was completely irrelevant, and even if it did get in, it was complete hearsay. I threw in vicarious admission, and then dismissed it. Where I blew it was the PR. Went with competency, conflict of interest, and confidence, but only talked about the potential breach, not the actual breach that was right there in the fact pattern. If I got to sixty on number 2, I think I'm okay on the others.
Last edited by Blossomray on Thu Aug 03, 2017 11:56 am, edited 1 time in total.

Blossomray
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby Blossomray » Thu Aug 03, 2017 11:55 am

maxmartin wrote:
InterAlia1961 wrote:
Slickrick90 wrote:
Blossomray wrote:
caliguy93 wrote:
Dee099 wrote:A valid argument but not enough to convince me Evidence didn't apply, or even some Civ Pro.

November is only light years away, so well know soon.


unfortunately, there is never a case where they test a subject twice, and we had a full civ pro question. so there is zero chance that the question had a civ pro crossover even though i agree, motion to compel and work product for discovery reason all fall under it. You had to Know Civ pro for it, but they are grading it for PR.

My tutor told me that in fact patterns, if there just isn't enough facts to support the header you are analyzing, then chances are its not relevant. From what i hear regarding your guys analysis for evidence, a lot of people had to make lots of assumptions that were not in the fact pattern to discuss evidence issues such as relevance, authentication, business records, or anything else for the elements of exceptions to hearsay.

If you have to assume too many facts, or don't have much facts to support a potential issue, chances are its not an issue for the exam... as such evidence would fall into that category and is ultimately a deciding factor for me that it was not an evidence question.

i can see how anyone can fall down that rabbit hole, as when i read the calls of the question first i couldn't decide whether it was evidence, civ pro or PR and didn't figure it out until i read the entire fact pattern.



You're going to feel very silly come November. Attorney-client privilege is purely an evidentiary issue. Work product is a discovery issue and therefore a civ pro issue. You are correct that PR was an issue to discuss, but it was only an issue in the third question that asked about ethical violations. Given that the first question asked whether the judge should compel testimony and didn't specify deposition testimony, hearsay and other evidentiary issues were entirely appropriate (though collateral) issues to discuss. I saw your comment that in your opinion, work product and privilege are PR issues. Unfortunately, this isn't a matter of opinion. This was a cross-over question between CA evidence, CA civ pro, and PR. You can confirm this information with your tutor. ;)


I hope you are right. That's how I felt too.


Question 2 was straight up CA evidence and PR. It was not a CivPro question. The first call was testing whether you could tell who the client was and whether it was relevant. The attorney could testify because his client was not the defendant. The second call was also testing relevancy. Wendy's testimony was completely irrelevant, and even if it did get in, it was complete hearsay. I threw in vicarious admission, and then dismissed it. Where I blew it was the PR. Went with competency, conflict of interest, and confidence, but only talked about the potential breach, not the actual breach that was right there in the fact pattern. If I got to sixty on number 2, I think I'm okay on the others.

Nope in my opinion, it is a pure PR question. It has nothing to do with the admissibility of the evidence, any analysis of relevance or hearsay is not necessary. But if you think privilege or confidentiality should be called evidence, I guess you can call it PR/E hybrid.


Privilege is an evidence concept - regardless of whether it's spousal privilege, doctor-patient, etc. Discovery issues (qualified/absolute work product) are civ pro issues. Confidentiality issues are PR issues. The question wanted to see if we understood the difference between those concepts. If you don't believe me you can check the FRE, the CEC, the ABA or CA ethics code, or the CCP/FRCP. This won't affect your score in a major way I'm sure you still passed. It's more of just a fundamental misunderstanding of these concepts that you're struggling with.

InterAlia1961
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby InterAlia1961 » Thu Aug 03, 2017 12:31 pm

Blossomray wrote:Privilege is an evidence concept - regardless of whether it's spousal privilege, doctor-patient, etc. Discovery issues (qualified/absolute work product) are civ pro issues. Confidentiality issues are PR issues. The question wanted to see if we understood the difference between those concepts. If you don't believe me you can check the FRE, the CEC, the ABA or CA ethics code, or the CCP/FRCP. This won't affect your score in a major way I'm sure you still passed. It's more of just a fundamental misunderstanding of these concepts that you're struggling with.


In California, to be admissible, evidence must be relevant. Wendy's statement was irrelevant. Even if it was relevant, it was complete hearsay. Even if it could be admitted, it was work-product, and the ONLY way to get it in is to show a hardship such that the evidence could not be discovered any other way. I don't see what is so hard about that. The court wasn't going to compel production. Period. On the first call, the attorney could testify because the defendant wasn't his client. He had a huge conflict of interest, though.




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