Character and fitness filing question- Supplying foreign documents

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BarPassed

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Character and fitness filing question- Supplying foreign documents

Postby BarPassed » Tue Nov 26, 2019 4:57 pm

Hi all,

I have passed the Bar and am currently trying to gain admission.
I've figured out all my employment records and obtained permission/consent from former supervisors to have their names and phone numbers listed. So that is taken care of.

I am however having some trouble obtaining driving records and criminal history. The reason for that is because I have a driver's license from a foreign country with an address that I no longer live since years ago, and that country's version of DMV will only mail my driving records to the address that is listed on my license. There is no way to forward the mail to the States.
But my state is adamant about me obtaining a certified driving record. So in this situation, would I need to obtain a driver's license in my current state and obtain a certified driving record from this state? I don't know if this is going to suffice since if I get it here now, it will be relatively new and might not contain, if any, moving violations or whatever in my driving history. I don't know if that is usually acceptable. Otherwise, there is no way for me to obtain driving record from that foreign country.

My second question is concerning the criminal history background check. The app states that I would need to obtain all criminal history records from everywhere I lived. I do not know how this is feasible or realistic? I've lived in many foreign countries. From what I've gathered, those countries only allow in-person pick up or only would mail within the country and will not mail over the certified copy to the states where I currently live. Would I be able to be excused from this requirement or make an objection to the request as unduly burdensome on my end as an applicant? I can't imagine they will make me travel to all those countries to obtain copies of criminal history records.....

I ask your advice in lieu of retaining an attorney in regards to this matter. I haven't filed the application yet, but if they do raise any questions, what type of attorney would likely deal with applicants? Would it be an education attorney?

Thank you.
Last edited by Nichole on Tue Nov 26, 2019 6:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Amend title

cybersoyuz

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Re: Character and fitness filing question- Supplying foreign documents

Postby cybersoyuz » Thu Nov 28, 2019 11:11 pm

All of these are valid concerns. I think you should direct those questions to the character and fitness committee as different states have different requirements. There are also attorneys specialized in character and fitness issues.

Mobster1983

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Re: Character and fitness filing question- Supplying foreign documents

Postby Mobster1983 » Mon Dec 02, 2019 4:22 am

First of all, congrats on passing the bar!

It would help to know which state you are in because, as cybersoyuz mentioned each state has different requirements. For traffic records, some states only require abstracts from states where you had a driver's license, others require it for everywhere you lived (mine was the latter and I had to pull from 7 states; it was a PITA). One state did not provide abstracts so I just wrote and signed a Declaration stating I did not have any traffic violations in that state.

I do not know the rules of every state, but that ones I looked at do not require you to "obtain all criminal history records." This could only be applicable if you actually have a criminal history. The two bar applications I filled out just required you to list any criminal history, there was no requirement to provide documents (at least if you were never convicted of a crime). I would definitely speak to someone in the C&F committee/office to get clarification on this.

BarPassed

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Re: Character and fitness filing question- Supplying foreign documents

Postby BarPassed » Tue Dec 03, 2019 5:01 pm

Thank you for your reply.
My app requires me to pull driving records from places I've lived. Some are in the states and some are in the foreign countries. Haha......
Did you have to travel to all of those seven states in person to pick up a driving record? I don't know I've never had to do something like this so I am very puzzled. I don't have time to visit all the places I've lived so not sure what to do.
Was there a template that you used to sign a declaration or affirmation that you had no traffic violations in that particular state?
My app also requires that I submit certified copies of criminal records in every places I've lived so..... wow this is going to take awhile.
But thank you all!

Mobster1983 wrote:First of all, congrats on passing the bar!

It would help to know which state you are in because, as cybersoyuz mentioned each state has different requirements. For traffic records, some states only require abstracts from states where you had a driver's license, others require it for everywhere you lived (mine was the latter and I had to pull from 7 states; it was a PITA). One state did not provide abstracts so I just wrote and signed a Declaration stating I did not have any traffic violations in that state.

I do not know the rules of every state, but that ones I looked at do not require you to "obtain all criminal history records." This could only be applicable if you actually have a criminal history. The two bar applications I filled out just required you to list any criminal history, there was no requirement to provide documents (at least if you were never convicted of a crime). I would definitely speak to someone in the C&F committee/office to get clarification on this.

Moabit

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Re: Character and fitness filing question- Supplying foreign documents

Postby Moabit » Wed Dec 04, 2019 4:06 am

BarPassed wrote:But my state is adamant about me obtaining a certified driving record. So in this situation, would I need to obtain a driver's license in my current state and obtain a certified driving record from this state? I don't know if this is going to suffice since if I get it here now, it will be relatively new and might not contain, if any, moving violations or whatever in my driving history. I don't know if that is usually acceptable.

Sorry, I do not follow. Your bar people don't just want "a driving record," they most likely want all your driving records from all jurisdictions that granted you a driver's license (during the last 10 years or since 18 years old, depending on the bar). So even if you receive a driving license from your current state, that would not obviate the need to provide a certified driving record from your home country. On the other hand, there must be a process that you could follow if your foreign driving record is unrecoverable (say, if you are a refugee from Iran). Call your bar people and ask.



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