February 2021 Bar Examination

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The New York Court of Appeals announced on October 21, 2020 that because the threat posed by the pandemic has not abated sufficiently to conduct in-person testing of large numbers of applicants the Court has determined that New York will administer a remote bar exam in February 2021. Click here to access the announcement issued by the Court of Appeals.


The February 2021 exam will be composed of all components of the Uniform Bar Examination (UBE) and will provide candidates with a portable score that can be transferred to other UBE jurisdictions. While the administration of the October 2020 remote exam was very successful, it included a limited set of questions that together comprised half of the sessions for a full UBE. The Board is mindful of the challenges posed by a large potential pool of test takers for the first full remote UBE, including the impact a large number of test-takers for the February 2021 bar exam would have on the Board’s ability to adequately prepare for the July 2021 exam administration.

Accordingly, in order to provide for a safe and secure administration of the February 2021 examination, registration will proceed on a rolling basis. The first application filing period, which included first-time Juris Doctor candidates who graduated from an ABA-approved law school in 2020 and repeater Juris Doctor candidates who graduated from an ABA-approved law school between 2016 and 2020, took place from November 1 to 15, 2020, and is now closed.

The second application filing period will open to a limited number of foreign-educated applicants on a “first-come, first-served basis” starting at 10:00 AM on November 17, 2020. The Board will announce when all available seats have been taken during the Second Application Filing Period, which shall, in any event, close no later than 11:59 PM on November 30, 2020. Interested applicants are highly encouraged to apply as soon as the Second Application Period opens on November 17, 2020 by logging into their account through the Applicant Services Portal.

Eligibility Requirements for the Second Application Filing Period:

  1. First-time foreign-educated candidates whose foreign legal education has already been approved by the Board and who (1) graduated with an LL.M. degree from an ABA-approved law school in the United States in 2020 or will graduate with such degree in 2020, January 2021 or February 2021, and (2) did not take any bar examination (in person or remotely) in any U.S. state, district or territory during 2020.
  1. First-time foreign-educated candidates who received advanced approval by the Board to sit for the New York bar examination and who (1) received their foreign legal education from a common-law jurisdiction, and (2) graduated with their first degree in law from this common law jurisdiction in 2020, and (3) did not take any bar examination (in person or remotely) in any U.S. state, district or territory during 2020.

For those Juris Doctor candidates who took the October 2020 remote exam in New York and are unsuccessful, see “NOTICE TO CANDIDATES WHO TOOK THE OCTOBER 2020 REMOTE EXAM” below.

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