Daily Coronavirus Update: Second Application Period Announced for Sept. 2020 Bar Exam

By Christian Nolan

June 1, 2020

Daily Coronavirus Update: Second Application Period Announced for Sept. 2020 Bar Exam


By Christian Nolan

Good evening Members,

The New York State Board of Law Examiners has announced a second application period for the September 2020 Bar Exam that makes graduates of law schools outside of New York eligible to apply.

Beginning on Tuesday, June 2 at 10:00 a.m., applications will be accepted from any candidate who graduated with a J.D. degree from an ABA-accredited law school located outside of New York, and who has not previously sat for a bar exam in any U.S. jurisdiction. The application period will close on Friday, June 12 at 10:00 a.m.

The statement from the Board of Law Examiners, which operates under the auspices of the New York State Court of Appeals, said that, at this time, seating cannot be guaranteed to candidates who register during this application period. They said that after the application period closes, the board will assess available seating in light of existing health and safety guidance, and candidates will be notified whether or not they will be seated for the exam.

The first round of applications held last month was limited to only those who graduated from one of the fifteen law schools located in New York State.

“While our efforts to maximize seating remain ongoing, the health and safety of all participants must remain our top priority,” said the statement. “Given the constraints caused by the public health crisis, candidates are strongly urged to consider sitting for the UBE at a later date or in other jurisdictions that may be better positioned to accommodate test-takers. Candidates are also reminded that public health concerns may ultimately preclude the administration of the September bar exam in New York. Please continue to monitor this website for updates.”

Chief Judge’s Update Credits NYSBA

In her latest weekly address, Chief Judge Janet DiFiore said the state court system’s partnership with NYSBA to provide free legal representation in Surrogate’s Courts to thousands of financially disadvantaged individuals and families who lost their loved ones as a result of the pandemic “has been met with an overwhelming response.”

DiFiore said 630 lawyers volunteered as of Friday, May 29 “demonstrating what we know to be the noble spirit and generosity of the legal profession in time of need.”

A virtual training program for the volunteer attorneys was prepared by a committee of Surrogate’s Court judges, senior staff and experienced trusts and estates practitioners and pro bono representation will get underway this week, complemented, DiFiore said, by the introduction today of e-filing in the New York City Surrogate’s Courts.

“And we owe a debt of gratitude to Michael Miller, former president of the state bar, for leading this project, and to all of the local bar associations and volunteer attorneys around the state who have responded to the crisis with an incredible spirit of generosity and service that has, frankly, been inspiring to watch,” said DiFiore.

Click here for more information and how you can help.

Phase Two

Over the last two weeks, the state court system has restored in-person courthouse operations in every region outside New York City.

“And I am pleased to report that this process has gone smoothly,” said DiFiore. “It is, clearly, a ‘new normal’ for all of us in the courts, a new normal defined by reduced courthouse traffic, personal distancing, face coverings and a host of operational and safety measures designed to prevent the spread of the virus.”

DiFiore said as more regions move into the second phase of reopening, the vast majority of non-essential matters will continue to be handled virtually, with appropriate exceptions allowed for in-person appearances at the court’s discretion.

Importantly, she said during the second phase that the court system will begin to handle a limited number of essential matters in person, primarily in Family Court. She said more details about this will be made available soon.

COVID-19 Memorial

NYSBA is inviting you to join us in a special tribute to the spirit of our colleagues who lost their lives to COVID-19.

A COVID-19 memorial video will be played during the virtual meeting of the NYSBA House of Delegates on Saturday, June 13, and will also be shared on the NYSBA website and social media.

If you would like to honor an attorney, judge or legal professional who passed away as a result of the pandemic, please email [email protected] by Friday, June 5, with the name and city of the colleague to be memorialized.

COVID-19 Webinars

Tuesday, June 2 – Human Resource Issues in the Time of COVID-19.

Tuesday, June 2 – An Election Like No Other: Preparing for a Local Election Postponed Due To the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Tuesday, June 2 – How to Survive and Potentially Thrive as a Neutral in These Volatile Times.

Latest NYSBA.ORG Coronavirus News

We are adding new content each day to our website related to the coronavirus public health emergency and its impact on the legal community.

NYSBA President Scott Karson will be officially sworn-in this evening during a virtual ceremony. Click here to read his first President’s Message: Leadership and Service in the Age of COVID-19.

Karson’s message is just part of the coronavirus coverage in the June-July issue of the NYSBA Journal. It also includes an interview with Above the Law founder David Lat about his fight against COVID-19, a guide for how to use Skype for court appearances, a look at how the pandemic is impacting labor and employment lawyers, and a detailed plan for how to conduct remote real estate closings.


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