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Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 3:20 pm
by DalRock
Starting February, 2021.

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 4:46 pm
by BasilHallward
Source?

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Tue Oct 09, 2018 4:59 pm
by DalRock

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Wed Oct 10, 2018 10:30 am
by JoeSeperac
With Texas, 58% of examinees taking a bar exam in the U.S. will be taking the UBE. It seems inevitable that all the remaining states will switch to the UBE in the next 10 years.

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Wed Oct 10, 2018 12:01 pm
by HarrisonK
Any speculation on their minimum passing score requirement?

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Wed Oct 10, 2018 12:22 pm
by DalRock
HarrisonK wrote:Any speculation on their minimum passing score requirement?


270.

Portable score within 60 months.

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Wed Oct 10, 2018 1:41 pm
by QContinuum
JoeSeperac wrote:With Texas, 58% of examinees taking a bar exam in the U.S. will be taking the UBE. It seems inevitable that all the remaining states will switch to the UBE in the next 10 years.


CA might be able to hold out indefinitely given the size of its legal market. Maybe FL too. And LA still has its own civil law thing. But agreed that the other remaining states will likely hop on the bandwagon sooner rather than later.

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Wed Oct 10, 2018 1:46 pm
by HarrisonK
DalRock wrote:
HarrisonK wrote:Any speculation on their minimum passing score requirement?


270.

Portable score within 60 months.


Does this mean that even someone who scored 270+ BEFORE Texas adopted UBE, but within 60 months, can transfer?

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Wed Oct 10, 2018 2:05 pm
by DalRock
HarrisonK wrote:
DalRock wrote:
HarrisonK wrote:Any speculation on their minimum passing score requirement?


270.

Portable score within 60 months.


Does this mean that even someone who scored 270+ BEFORE Texas adopted UBE, but within 60 months, can transfer?



Yes. However, Texas has no date for transfer yet. Might be 6 months after first UBE exam.

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Wed Oct 10, 2018 3:29 pm
by JoeSeperac
QContinuum wrote:
JoeSeperac wrote:With Texas, 58% of examinees taking a bar exam in the U.S. will be taking the UBE. It seems inevitable that all the remaining states will switch to the UBE in the next 10 years.


CA might be able to hold out indefinitely given the size of its legal market. Maybe FL too. And LA still has its own civil law thing. But agreed that the other remaining states will likely hop on the bandwagon sooner rather than later.


It could be, but CA shifting from a 3-day exam to a 2-day exam suggests they are moving towards it. My guess is that CA will switch over last and just set an insanely high passing UBE score. I see examinees who fail in CA who could pass in any other state with no problem. Unfortunately, bar examiners (especially CA) care more about economic protectionism than minimum competency. For example, I once knew two retakers who both took the NY exam 3 times (same 3 exams). Both had similar backgrounds and studied relatively the same as each other. The first retaker had scores of 260, 265, and 262 (I am converting from pre-UBE to UBE and I may not be stating the exact scores but they are close) so this examinee never passed. The second retaker had scores of 220, 218 and then 266. So only the second retaker was admitted to practice law in NY, but I always felt the first retaker would have made the better attorney (he just couldn’t get a high enough MBE score). If the exam was based on minimum competency rather than a cut score, there would be some avenue for the first retaker to be admitted based on his consistently close to passing scores. But a licensure exam is basically economic protectionism with the cut score operating as an arbitrary limit on the number of attorneys licensed in the jurisdiction. For example, in a few states (Vermont, North Dakota, Alaska, and South Dakota), about 100 examinees take that state's bar exam each year. With such a small group, it is certainly possible that each and every one of the candidates is qualified to practice law. However, the pass rates for these states over the past ten years ranged from 50%-94%. In Vermont, the highest pass rate over the past ten years was 68%. In Alaska, the highest pass rate over the past ten years was 71%. In North Dakota, the highest pass rate over the past ten years was 83%. In South Dakota, the highest pass rate over the past ten years was 94%. Put simply, if the seven current justices of the New York Court of Appeals were the only persons to sit for the NY Bar exam, two of the justices would fail the exam based on the cut score.

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Thu Oct 11, 2018 3:45 pm
by TheJuryMustDie
JoeSeperac wrote:
JoeSeperac wrote:With Texas, 58% of examinees taking a bar exam in the U.S. will be taking the UBE. It seems inevitable that all the remaining states will switch to the UBE in the next 10 years.


Put simply, if the seven current justices of the New York Court of Appeals were the only persons to sit for the NY Bar exam, two of the justices would fail the exam based on the cut score.


A worrying reality, Joe! :shock:

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Thu Oct 11, 2018 4:26 pm
by cram1
QContinuum wrote:
CA might be able to hold out indefinitely given the size of its legal market. Maybe FL too.


This is why I'm surprised Texas (and a few other large markets like New York and Illinois) have agreed to adopt the UBE.

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Thu Oct 11, 2018 4:58 pm
by HarrisonK
QContinuum wrote:
JoeSeperac wrote:With Texas, 58% of examinees taking a bar exam in the U.S. will be taking the UBE. It seems inevitable that all the remaining states will switch to the UBE in the next 10 years.


CA might be able to hold out indefinitely given the size of its legal market. Maybe FL too. And LA still has its own civil law thing. But agreed that the other remaining states will likely hop on the bandwagon sooner rather than later.


Apparently Florida is refusing to adopt the UBE because they are afraid of all the "Snowbirds" and full time retirees stealing jobs from FL resident attorneys. Unlikely that they will adopt UBE anytime soon despite the widespread acceptance.

I'm interested to see who adopts UBE first: Florida or Delaware. DE's argument against adoption is that DE is too specialized and the UBE wont accurately reflect their needs.

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 8:39 am
by b290
JoeSeperac wrote:
QContinuum wrote:
JoeSeperac wrote:With Texas, 58% of examinees taking a bar exam in the U.S. will be taking the UBE. It seems inevitable that all the remaining states will switch to the UBE in the next 10 years.


CA might be able to hold out indefinitely given the size of its legal market. Maybe FL too. And LA still has its own civil law thing. But agreed that the other remaining states will likely hop on the bandwagon sooner rather than later.


It could be, but CA shifting from a 3-day exam to a 2-day exam suggests they are moving towards it. My guess is that CA will switch over last and just set an insanely high passing UBE score. I see examinees who fail in CA who could pass in any other state with no problem. Unfortunately, bar examiners (especially CA) care more about economic protectionism than minimum competency. For example, I once knew two retakers who both took the NY exam 3 times (same 3 exams). Both had similar backgrounds and studied relatively the same as each other. The first retaker had scores of 260, 265, and 262 (I am converting from pre-UBE to UBE and I may not be stating the exact scores but they are close) so this examinee never passed. The second retaker had scores of 220, 218 and then 266. So only the second retaker was admitted to practice law in NY, but I always felt the first retaker would have made the better attorney (he just couldn’t get a high enough MBE score). If the exam was based on minimum competency rather than a cut score, there would be some avenue for the first retaker to be admitted based on his consistently close to passing scores. But a licensure exam is basically economic protectionism with the cut score operating as an arbitrary limit on the number of attorneys licensed in the jurisdiction. For example, in a few states (Vermont, North Dakota, Alaska, and South Dakota), about 100 examinees take that state's bar exam each year. With such a small group, it is certainly possible that each and every one of the candidates is qualified to practice law. However, the pass rates for these states over the past ten years ranged from 50%-94%. In Vermont, the highest pass rate over the past ten years was 68%. In Alaska, the highest pass rate over the past ten years was 71%. In North Dakota, the highest pass rate over the past ten years was 83%. In South Dakota, the highest pass rate over the past ten years was 94%. Put simply, if the seven current justices of the New York Court of Appeals were the only persons to sit for the NY Bar exam, two of the justices would fail the exam based on the cut score.

If CA shifted, look for a 290+ to factor in the relative "easiness" of the UBE (to its old exam), I mean its current passing score would be a 288 already.

Add to your holdouts IN (which specifically rejected the UBE for various reasons), and MI (46th to adopt the MBE and intra-market protectionism).

HarrisonK wrote:
QContinuum wrote:
JoeSeperac wrote:With Texas, 58% of examinees taking a bar exam in the U.S. will be taking the UBE. It seems inevitable that all the remaining states will switch to the UBE in the next 10 years.


CA might be able to hold out indefinitely given the size of its legal market. Maybe FL too. And LA still has its own civil law thing. But agreed that the other remaining states will likely hop on the bandwagon sooner rather than later.


Apparently Florida is refusing to adopt the UBE because they are afraid of all the "Snowbirds" and full time retirees stealing jobs from FL resident attorneys. Unlikely that they will adopt UBE anytime soon despite the widespread acceptance.

I'm interested to see who adopts UBE first: Florida or Delaware. DE's argument against adoption is that DE is too specialized and the UBE wont accurately reflect their needs.

I'll guess DE. It's passing mark is already insanely high (so that'll keep out a lot of out-of-staters) and it could add a "state law component" (i.e. exam) that reflects domestic laws.

My $.02

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Sat Oct 13, 2018 1:07 am
by NonbindingPrecedent
HarrisonK wrote:
QContinuum wrote:
JoeSeperac wrote:With Texas, 58% of examinees taking a bar exam in the U.S. will be taking the UBE. It seems inevitable that all the remaining states will switch to the UBE in the next 10 years.


CA might be able to hold out indefinitely given the size of its legal market. Maybe FL too. And LA still has its own civil law thing. But agreed that the other remaining states will likely hop on the bandwagon sooner rather than later.


Apparently Florida is refusing to adopt the UBE because they are afraid of all the "Snowbirds" and full time retirees stealing jobs from FL resident attorneys. Unlikely that they will adopt UBE anytime soon despite the widespread acceptance.

I'm interested to see who adopts UBE first: Florida or Delaware. DE's argument against adoption is that DE is too specialized and the UBE wont accurately reflect their needs.


Definitely Delaware. Delaware's objection extends far beyond just the content of the exam. If anything, that is the part that is easiest to overcome. The most concerning part about the UBE to Delaware is the portability of exam scores. A substantial part of Delaware's legal market is based on serving as local counsel. Delaware is a hotbed for corporate law, bankruptcy, and more recently patent litigation. Many of the "big players" in these cases will have lead counsel from a Vault 100 firm with a practice team based in NY, LA, DC, Chicago, etc. However, to file in Delaware court, they need local counsel. Delaware does not want a bunch of people taking the UBE in NY, DC, IL, etc. and just transferring scores over to Delaware. This could significantly reduce demand for local counsel and have a catastrophic effect on Delaware's small legal market.

Delaware's bar exam, while moderately difficult compared to the average state, is probably not the toughest exam in the country. However, their state bar is designed to be the most resistant to outsiders trying to gain admission to a second state. Delaware has no waive in eligibility, the only way to get in is to take the bar. The bar exam is only offered once per year --- in July. In addition to the exam itself, applicants must have a Delaware attorney sponsor and personally attend around 25 different random Delaware court proceedings.

If anything, I think it would be more likely for Delaware to do what Arkansas does ---- offer the MBE, MEE, and 2 MPTs, but not call it the UBE and thus not participate in score portability. This would fit Delaware's needs better.

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Sat Oct 13, 2018 7:56 am
by meat tornado
I worked in Delaware. It will never adopt the UBE. The state is way too protectionist, and is pretty snobby about the caliber of lawyers in the state. The essay portion of the Delaware exam is significantly harder than the MEE (I’ve taken both), and I just don’t see the state giving that up.

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Sat Oct 27, 2018 3:09 pm
by Neve
JoeSeperac wrote:With Texas, 58% of examinees taking a bar exam in the U.S. will be taking the UBE. It seems inevitable that all the remaining states will switch to the UBE in the next 10 years.


Delaware and Louisiana are the two states that will never adopt the UBE.

Re: Texas adopts the UBE

Posted: Wed Oct 31, 2018 8:49 pm
by JoeSeperac
Neve wrote:
JoeSeperac wrote:With Texas, 58% of examinees taking a bar exam in the U.S. will be taking the UBE. It seems inevitable that all the remaining states will switch to the UBE in the next 10 years.


Delaware and Louisiana are the two states that will never adopt the UBE.


I think its possible they may adopt the UBE, set a very high passing score (probably 290) but also include a local component or burdensome requirements that allow the state to remain protectionistic. I never thought CA would do it, but changing from a 3 day exam to a 2 day exam suggests they are preparing for it. There is lots of weird stuff happening between the states that I think is related to the UBE. For example, NJ had an overall July pass rate of 75% based on the last 20 years while CT had an overall July pass rate of 77% based on the last 20 years. The J18 NJ pass rate was 59% (drop of 16%) while the J18 CT pass rate was 55% (drop of 22%). Personally I think this was done to stop failing New Yorkers from UBE forum shopping (all 3 states are 266).