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California Bar Exam Information

  • About the Bar Exam

    The California Bar Exam is a two-day exam. It takes place on the last Tuesday and Wednesday of February and July. The California Essays and Performance Test take place on Tuesday and the MBE® (Multistate Bar Exam) takes place on Wednesday. Note that California has transitioned to a two-day exam with the July 2017 administration.

  • Contact Information

    California State Bar

    180 Howard St.
    San Francisco, CA 94105

  • Bar Exam Format

    The California Bar Exam is a two-day exam.

    Day 1: Three Essays covering California-specific and Multistate law; PM: Two Essays covering California-specific and Multistate law and one California Performance Test (CPT).

    Day 2: 200-question, multiple-choice Multistate Bar Exam (MBE®).

  • Subjects Tested

    Business Associations (Agency, Parternship, Sole Proprietorships, Corporations, Limited Liability Companies, Joint Ventures); Civil Procedure (Federal and California); Community Property; Constitutional Law; Contracts; Criminal Law and Procedure; Evidence (Federal and California); Professional Responsibility (California Rules of Professional Conduct; California Business and Professions Code; ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct and ABA Model Code of Professional Responsibility; relevant state and federal case law); Real Property; Remedies; Torts; Trusts; Wills and Succession.

  • Bar Exam Dates

    In 2020, the California Bar Exam will be administered on:

    • February 25 - February 26, 2020
    • July 28 - July 29, 2020
  • Grading

    The California Bar Exam will require a minimum scaled score of 1,390 points out of 2,000 points to pass. The MBE® is weighted at 50% of the score, the Essays are weighted at 35%, and the CPT is weighted at 15%.

  • MPRE®

    A minimum passing scaled score is 86 or higher.

    MPRE® Policy: Applicants may take the exam any time after completing their first year of law school.

  • Reciprocity

    Applicants who are already licensed to practice law in another state or jurisdiction must register as an attorney applicant, complete a positive moral character determination, and pass the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination as well as the California Bar Examination. If an applicant has an active license and has been certified as in good standing for at least four years before he or she takes the California Bar Exam, he or she may take the one-day Attorneys' Examination - this consists of only Day 1, the written exam. Attorneys with less than four years of active status, or who are inactive or not in good standing, must take the full two-day California Bar Exam, which includes the Multistate Bar Examination.

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