What You Should Know About the Georgia Bar Exam
The Georgia Bar Exam assesses law graduates and prospective Georgia bar applicants' understanding of legal concepts governing the laws and statutes of the state of Georgia. This article will cover the Georgia Bar Exam in detail to help you know what to expect and prepare for the exam confidently.
Eligibility & Registration
Candidates seeking admission to practice law in Georgia must complete a two-step process, submitting two applications with separate filing deadlines and registration fees.
- Step 1: Create a personal account on the Supreme Court of Georgia Office of Bar Admissions’ website and then submit an Application for Certification of Fitness.
- Step 2: Once the Fitness Board has issued you a Certification of Fitness to practice law, file a Bar Exam Application to gain eligibility to sit for a bar exam.
Candidates should read all the rules and policies governing admission to the practice of law in Georgia to ensure proper and timely applications.
Exam Dates & Schedule
The Georgia Bar Exam follows a two-day schedule.
- Day 1 features two 90-minute Multistate Performance Test (MPT) questions in the morning and four 45-minute essay questions in the afternoon.
- Day 2 features the 200-question, multiple-choice Multistate Bar Exam (MBE), with 100 questions offered in the morning and the remaining 100 in the afternoon.
|Bar Exam Dates||Regular Filing Period||Final Filing Period($200 late fee applies)||Transcript Deadline||Accommodations Deadline|
|July 26–27, 2022||April 8, 2022, through June 1, 2022||June 1, 2022 through July 1, 2022||June 30, 2022||June 30, 2022|
|February 21–22, 2023||November 9, 2022, through January 4, 2023||January 4, 2023, Through TBA||January 31, 2023||December 1, 2022|
Structure & Subjects
The following MBE subjects are tested on the Georgia Bar Exam:
- Constitutional Law
- Criminal Law/Procedure
- Federal Civil Procedure
- Real Property
You may find a complete list of subjects and subtopics here: MBE Subject Matter Outline.
2. Georgia-Specific Essays
In addition to the above MBE topics, the GA Bar Exam essay questions will test applicants on these subjects:
- Business Organizations
- Family Law
- Federal Practice and Procedure
- Georgia Practice and Procedure
- Non-Monetary Remedies
- Professional Ethics
- Wills and Estates
- Uniform Commercial Code (Articles 2, 3, & 9)
3. Multistate Performance Test (MPT)
The GA Bar Exam features two 90-minute performance test questions presenting a legal scenario that challenges you to determine how a lawyer would approach a resolution in response to the given scenario. The questions will include detailed documents with relevant and irrelevant information and facts, assessing your lawyering skills in filtering through the data to determine what is material to the case and arrive at a logical conclusion.
Scoring and Pass rates
GA Bar Exam Scoring
Admission into the Georgia Bar requires applicants to pass with a scaled score of 270.
- The MPT and essays scale to the MBE and applicants must earn a score of 115 on the MBE for the MPT and essays to be graded.
- Applicants with a combined score between 265 and 269 will have the opportunity to have their MPT questions and essays re-graded.
The Georgia Bar Exam requires applicants to achieve a minimum score of 115, so it is wise to prepare to ace the MBE.
GA Bar Exam Pass Rates
|Georgia Bar Exam Results||Overall Pass Rate||First-Timer Pass Rate||Repeater Pass Rate||Results Release Date|
|July 2021||64.4%||79.9%||14.1%||October 12, 2021|
|February 2021||45.9%||69.4%||N/A||May 21, 2021|
Georgia Bar Exam Reciprocity
- Must be a member of a reciprocating state bar (for a list of Georgia's reciprocal jurisdictions, visit Georgia Bar Admission on Motion without Examination)
- Must have actively been practicing law for 5 of the 7 years immediately preceding the application
- Must also meet education requirements
What Makes the Georgia Bar Exam Unique?
Georgia has not adopted the Uniform Bar Exam (UBE); instead of the Multistate Essay Exam (MEE), the Georgia Bar Exam offers Georgia-focused essays along with the MBE and MPT components.
Costs & Fees and Filing Deadlines
Registration fees for the Georgia Bar Exam vary by application type and filing deadline.
The first step to admission into the Georgia Bar is to file the Fitness Application and receive a valid Certification of Fitness to Practice Law. The Character and Fitness fee schedule is as follows:
|Type of Application||Fee|
|Fitness Application for the two-day exam if filed prior to the award of the first professional degree in law||$400|
|Fitness Application for the two-day exam if filed between the award of the first professional degree in law and within one year thereof||$600|
|Fitness Application for the two-day exam if filed more than one year after the award of the first professional degree in law||$700|
|Fitness Application for the one-day Attorneys' Examination||$900|
Once you receive notification that you've been issued a Certification of Fitness to practice law in Georgia, you may apply to sit for the GA Bar Exam. The Georgia Bar Exam application fee schedule is as follows:
|Type of Bar Exam Application||Regular Application Period Filing Fee||Final Application Period Filing Fee (After June 3rd)|
|Two-Day Bar Exam Application||$442||$642|
|One-Day Attorneys' Exam Application||$378||$578|
The journey to the bar can get expensive. The good news is that scholarships are available to law students and graduates to help with the costs associated with bar exam preparation and application.
- The University of Georgia School of Law offers several prestigious awards valued at or above full tuition to admitted students. Learn more at Authentic Scholarships | University of Georgia School of Law.
- The Gate City Bar Association offers annual scholarships for minority students enrolled in a law school in Georgia or Georgia residents enrolled in a law school outside the state. Learn more at Gate City Bar Association.
- The Georgia Association For Women Lawyers (GAWL) offers an annual scholarship to deserving women law students in Georgia. Learn more at GAWL Foundation Scholarships.
- The Law School Admission Council (LSAC) has compiled a list of available scholarships for various groups of law students. Check out the complete list here: Law School Scholarships and Grants | LSAC.
As a Georgia Bar Exam applicant, it would behoove you to research these and other resources and apply to as many scholarships as possible to offset your bar exam registration and/or bar prep costs.
The Georgia Bar Exam will challenge your ability to think like a lawyer and your mastery of Georgia law and statutes. But, as with all high-stakes exams, preparing with the bar prep review will help you perform well on the MBE and Georgia essays, improving your chances of passing the GA Bar Exam. And, with unlimited reattempts, if you don't succeed at first, try again until you achieve the minimum passing score of 270. Good luck!
Georgia Bar Exam FAQs
The Georgia Bar Exam is administered twice a year—on the first Tuesday and Wednesday in February and July.
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