So you have completed your law school education and now you are ready to take your final steps towards becoming a Hawaii lawyer. It is now time to face the daunting task of taking the Hawaii Bar Exam. With an overall passing rate of 66-80% you have a fair to good chance of passing this professional obstacle if you prepare for it.
There are many things that you will need to know before you sit for the Hawaii Bar Exam including: application procedures, testing format, and what will be covered on the exam. This article will provide you with this information and hopefully arm you with the knowledge needed to prepare for the great challenge of sitting for the Hawaii Bar Exam.
Hawaii Board of Bar Examiners
417 South King Street
Honolulu, HI 96813
To sit for the Hawaii Bar you need to (1) have graduated with a Juris Doctorate or LLB degree from an American Bar Association approved law school, or (2) you must be licensed to practice law in another state, and you must have actively practiced law for five or the six preceding years, and be of good character and in good standing with the other state’s Bar Association. You also need to have passed the MPRE with a score of at least 85 no matter which qualification method you use.
For more information about taking the MPRE you can write to the address below for a testing application packet.
National Conference of Bar Examiners
P.O. Box 4001
Iowa City, Iowa 52243
To request a complete application packet with testing information, requirements, and general information you will need to call (808) 539-4907 and follow prompts to the information you need, or you can call (808) 539-4977 and press 2 to talk to a person. More information is also available at the following website: www.state.hi.us/jud. After you receive your packet you will need to fill out all of the forms and submit them by the stated deadlines, and you will need to enclose the appropriate application, examination, and late fees. These fees change annually, however, to give you an idea of the costs to expect the 2006 fees was $300 for the general applicant made out to the Supreme Court Board of Examiners.
The Hawaii Bar Exam lasts two days, and it is given twice a year. Once in late February, and once in late January.
On the first day of the Hawaii Bar Exam you will answer seven Multistate Essay Exam Questions, fifteen ethics essay questions on the Hawaii Rules of Professional Conduct, and two 90 minute Multistate Performance Test questions.
On the second and final day of testing you till take the Multistate Bar Exam, which consists of 200 multiple choice questions.
Scoring of the Hawaii Bar Exam will be accomplished by averaging the total points earned by the total points possible. You will need a score greater than or equal to 134 to pass.
Studying for the Hawaii Bar will be quite an undertaking. You will need to devote several months to studying procedures, laws, and information that you learned during your three years of law school. To help direct your studying it is highly recommended that you enroll in a Bar Exam Review course. Law schools and self-study institutes provide these courses. The state of Hawaii only has one local Hawaii Bar Exam Review Program available. For more information about this program please contact the program directly:
820 Mililani Street, Suite 600
Honolulu, Hawaii 96816
In addition to enrolling in a Bar Exam Review course, you should also learn what will be on the examination and where you can go for study guides.
Topics That Will Be Covered on the Hawaii Bar Exam
The following topics will be covered in the Hawaii Bar Exam. You will need to know federal and Hawaii specific rules, regulations, general applications, and procedures that apply to these topics.
1. Business Organization
2. Constitutional Law
3. Criminal Law and Procedures
4. Family Law
5. Torts including product liability
6. Civil Procedures
9. Real Property
To help you study, the following websites provide official rules of legal procedures for the state of Hawaii and for federal procedures.
For Hawaii application forms and general information go to:
For Federal Rules of Civil Procedures go to:
For Federal Rules of Evidence go to:
Other Hawaii study guides go to: