Minnesota Bar Exam: A Basic Guide

If you are planning on taking the Minnesota Bar Exam you will need to educate yourself on what is expected of Minnesota Bar Candidates. First doing well on one section of the Minnesota Bar Exam is not good enough to ensure that you will pass the entire exam. To pass the Minnesota Bar Exam you will need to meet minimum scores for both sections of the exam. Also if you plan on using your laptop to take the Minnesota Bar Exam you will need to download the SoftTest software before you arrive for the test, and you will need it set up and ready to go by the time you arrive at the test center. More information about these two issues can be found at the Minnesota Board of Law Examiners’ website listed below. The rest of this article will go over the basics of preparing for the Minnesota Bar Exam including the qualifications needed to sit for the exam, the format of the exam, the topics covered on the exam, as well as where you can find free study materials online.

QUALIFICATIONS

The state of Minnesota has several qualifications to sit for the Minnesota Bar Exam. The first requirement is that the candidate must be at least 18 years of age. Next they must be of good moral character. To meet the educational requirements to sit for the Minnesota Bar Exam the candidate must have graduated from an ABA approved law school, and they must have earned a JD or an LLB degree. The final set of requirements is a set of pre-Bar Exam tests that the candidate must take and pass before they can sit for the Minnesota Bar Exam. First they must pass a written exam or qualify under Rules 7A, 7B, 8,9, or 10, and then they must take the Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam and pass it with a score of at least 85 points.

REGISTERING FOR THE EXAM

To register to sit for the Minnesota Bar Exam you will need to download, print out, complete, and submit an application package. These can be found on the Minnesota State Board of Law Examiners’ website.

Board of Law Examiners
Minnesota Judicial Center
25 Constitution Ave., Suite 110
St. Paul, Minnesota 55155
(651) 297-1800 Local Telephone Number
http://www.ble.state.mn.us

THE EXAM’S FORMAT

The Minnesota Bar Exam will span two days. It is given in St. Paul during the last week of February and during the last week of July. On the first day of the Minnesota Bar Exam you will be given the Multistate Performance Test, as well as six Minnesota State Essay Exam questions. On the second day of the Minnesota Bar Exam you will take the Multistate Bar Exam, which consists of 200 multiple choice questions that deal with general legal issues.

WHAT TO STUDY

On the first day of the Minnesota Bar Exam you will take the MPT which will evaluate your basic legal skills. You will be given one MPT questions in the morning, which will require you to use problem solving skills, legal analysis and reasoning skills, factual analysis skills, communication and organizational skills, and professional ethics. To study for this section of the Minnesota Bar Exam you should practice completing the following legal tasks:

1. writing a memorandum to a supervising attorney
2. writing a letter to a client
3. writing a persuasive memo
4. writing a persuasive brief
5. writing a statement of facts
6. writing a contract provision
7. drafting a will
8. composing a counseling plan
9. writing a proposal for settlement
10. writing an agreement
11. writing a discovery plan
12. drafting a witness examination plan
13. writing a closing argument

In addition to the MPT questions, you will also be given six Minnesota Bar Essay Exam questions on day one. To prepare for this section of the Minnesota Bar Exam you should study the following topics:

1. Administrative Law
2. Civil Procedure
3. Constitutional Law
4. Contracts
5. Criminal Law and Procedure
6. Ethics and Professional Responsibility
7. Evidence
8. Family Law
9. Federal Individual Income Taxation
10. Partnership, Proprietorship, and Corporations
11. Real Property
12. Torts
13. Uniform Commercial Code
14. Wills, Estate, and Trusts

For a study materials please check out the following links:

1. Minnesota Rules of Civil Procedures located at http://www.courts.state.mn.us/rules/civil/RCP_Forms_Index.htm
2. Minnesota Rules of Criminal Procedures located at http://www.lawmoose.com/index.cfm?Action=Library.&Topic=MN200598
3. Minnesota Codes located at http://www.romingerlegal.com/state/minnesota.html
4. Uniform Commercial Code located at http://www.law.cornell.edu/ucc/ucc.table.html

On the second day of the Minnesota Bar Exam you will take the Multistate Bar Exam. This exam will be made up of 200 multiple choice questions that cover the following topics as they are generally applied throughout the United States of America:

1. Constitutional Law
2. Contracts and Sales
3. Criminal Law and Procedures
4. Evidence
5. Real Property
6. Torts

If you would like a study guide for this section you can visit the NCBE website at http://www.ncbex.org/.

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