Summary of Requirements for Admission to Practice Law in California

The following is a summary of the requirements for admission to practice law in California. The full text of all requirements for admission are set forth in the Rules of the State Bar of California, Title 4, Division 1.


To be admitted to practice law in California, an applicant must:


  1. Complete the necessary general education;

  2. Register with the Committee of Bar Examiners as a law student or attorney applicant;

  3. Complete the requisite legal education;

  4. File an application to take the First-Year Law Students' Examination and pass, or establish exemption from the examination;

  5. File an application to take the bar examination and after eligibility has been confirmed, take and pass the examination;

  6. File an application for a moral character determination and receive a positive moral character determination from the Committee of Bar Examiners;

  7. File an application, take the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination and achieve a minimum scaled score as determined by the Committee of Bar Examiners, which examination is administered and graded by the National Conference of Bar Examiners; and,

  8. Be in compliance with California court ordered child or family support obligations.

Separate and distinct applications are required for registration, a moral character determination, The First Year Law Students' Examination and the bar examination. All of these applications can be accessed through the Admissions' portion of The State Bar of California's Website.

Applications and other information for the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination are available through the National Conference of Bar Examiners' Website.