New York Bar


I work full time and am doing an LLB (Business) Law degree in London UK. I am 40 and facing the prospect of having to do the LPC part time and then have to find a training contract. If I dont find a training contract until I have finished my LPC then it's going to be close to 4 years until I qualify as a solicitor. I was told that if I sit the New York Bar Exam I can then convert to the UK (I think by sitting a conversion) and then be able to practise as a solicitor in the UK. Does anyone know if this is correct?
I work full time and am doing an LLB (Business) Law degree in London UK. I am 40 and facing the prospect of having to do the LPC part time and then have to find a training contract. If I dont find a training contract until I have finished my LPC then it's going to be close to 4 years until I qualify as a solicitor. I was told that if I sit the New York Bar Exam I can then convert to the UK (I think by sitting a conversion) and then be able to practise as a solicitor in the UK. Does anyone know if this is correct?
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nicel22
That is indeed correct. Upon passing the NY Bar, you are eligible to sit the Qualified Lawyers Transfer Test (QLTT)here in the UK. However, I suggest you try to get some work experience in a law firm in order to succeed via this route.
That is indeed correct. Upon passing the NY Bar, you are eligible to sit the Qualified Lawyers Transfer Test (QLTT)here in the UK. However, I suggest you try to get some work experience in a law firm in order to succeed via this route.
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P_Martini
Unless it is different for U.K. law graduates (as opposed to foreign law graduates), you may only convert a foreign qualification like New York to the U.K. after practicing two years. That is not to say that you must practice two years prior to writing the exams (As I understand it, the exams may be written prior to then.), but the conversion via QLTT will only happen after both the exams and the years of practice requirement are satisfied.
Unless it is different for U.K. law graduates (as opposed to foreign law graduates), you may only convert a foreign qualification like New York to the U.K. after practicing two years. That is not to say that you must practice two years prior to writing the exams (As I understand it, the exams may be written prior to then.), but the conversion via QLTT will only happen after both the exams and the years of practice requirement are satisfied.
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Gregor2009
Hello,

Nicel22 and P_Martini are right - if you are intending to convert under the QLTT based on your qualification in the NY Bar, you would then have to have 2-years experience as a 'foreign lawyer'. This experience would technically be a substitute for the 2-year training contract requirement.

Accordingly, I would personally think completing a training contract would be more straightforward for you. Additionally, given the SRA's new policy after 1 September, it is now slightly more difficult to qualify under the QLTT.


Cheers,
Greg
Hello,

Nicel22 and P_Martini are right - if you are intending to convert under the QLTT based on your qualification in the NY Bar, you would then have to have 2-years experience as a 'foreign lawyer'. This experience would technically be a substitute for the 2-year training contract requirement.

Accordingly, I would personally think completing a training contract would be more straightforward for you. Additionally, given the SRA's new policy after 1 September, it is now slightly more difficult to qualify under the QLTT.


Cheers,
Greg
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onousias
Hi. That is correct. Once you pass the NY bar exam you are qualified to sit for the QLTT as this is what I am doing. I am a qualified NY attorney and a bar exam tutor who is living in London. I have submitted my papers to sit for the QLTT to be qualified in the UK.

I am also tutoring for the NY bar exam in London for the Feb exam 2009.

Thanks
Hi. That is correct. Once you pass the NY bar exam you are qualified to sit for the QLTT as this is what I am doing. I am a qualified NY attorney and a bar exam tutor who is living in London. I have submitted my papers to sit for the QLTT to be qualified in the UK.

I am also tutoring for the NY bar exam in London for the Feb exam 2009.

Thanks
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P_Martini
Additionally, given the SRA's new policy after 1 September, it is now slightly more difficult to qualify under the QLTT.


Greg:

What is the new policy after 1 September you are referring to?
<blockquote>Additionally, given the SRA's new policy after 1 September, it is now slightly more difficult to qualify under the QLTT.</blockquote>

Greg:

What is the new policy after 1 September you are referring to?
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Hey guys

Thanks for all the answers.

So is it definite that you must have 2 years practical experience before being able to sit the conversion?
Nino
Hey guys

Thanks for all the answers.

So is it definite that you must have 2 years practical experience before being able to sit the conversion?
Nino
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Gregor2009
Yes Nino, there is a requirement of 2 years practical experience before being able to sit the conversion - basically in-lieu of a 2-year training contract.

P_Martinini, the slightly revised rules that has been in-place since Sept 08 would be the need to gain at least 1 year of experience practising the laws of England and Wales. Specifically,

'at least one year must have been gained by practising the law of England and Wales. The experience must have been gained either in a firm or other organisation regulated by the SRA or under the direct supervision of a solicitor who had been admitted as a solicitor in England and Wales. If your experience was not gained working in a firm or other organisation regulated by the SRA, the solicitor who supervised you must have held a current practising certificate for England and Wales when they were supervising you and have previously held at least four such practising certificates".

Hope that this assists!


Cheers,
Greg
Yes Nino, there is a requirement of 2 years practical experience before being able to sit the conversion - basically in-lieu of a 2-year training contract.

P_Martinini, the slightly revised rules that has been in-place since Sept 08 would be the need to gain at least 1 year of experience practising the laws of England and Wales. Specifically,

'at least one year must have been gained by practising the law of England and Wales. The experience must have been gained either in a firm or other organisation regulated by the SRA or under the direct supervision of a solicitor who had been admitted as a solicitor in England and Wales. If your experience was not gained working in a firm or other organisation regulated by the SRA, the solicitor who supervised you must have held a current practising certificate for England and Wales when they were supervising you and have previously held at least four such practising certificates".

Hope that this assists!


Cheers,
Greg
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Hi Greg

Thanks, I think that probably puts rest to doing the NY Bar then. I was hoping to do it with the conversion to UK because it's a little difficult to find a training contract in the UK at the moment. Oh well, LPC it is then!!

Hey anybody out there offering a UK training contract to a hard working conscientious individual??? I have 20 years of financial services experience, running own company for the last 8 years!!
Hi Greg

Thanks, I think that probably puts rest to doing the NY Bar then. I was hoping to do it with the conversion to UK because it's a little difficult to find a training contract in the UK at the moment. Oh well, LPC it is then!!

Hey anybody out there offering a UK training contract to a hard working conscientious individual??? I have 20 years of financial services experience, running own company for the last 8 years!!
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Seeti
Hi I am thinking of doing the NY exam so i can qualify in the UK. I am working as a paralegal at the moment and hopefully I will have enough experience by the time I take the exam to qualify. However does anyone know what the job prospects are once you qualify this way?Do firms still take you on after qualifying like this instead of the traditional route of the training contract? If anyone has done the course and has maybe obtained employment in the UK upon qualification I would appreciate any advice/tips. Thanks.
Hi I am thinking of doing the NY exam so i can qualify in the UK. I am working as a paralegal at the moment and hopefully I will have enough experience by the time I take the exam to qualify. However does anyone know what the job prospects are once you qualify this way?Do firms still take you on after qualifying like this instead of the traditional route of the training contract? If anyone has done the course and has maybe obtained employment in the UK upon qualification I would appreciate any advice/tips. Thanks.
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CR1
Hi,

Is there any way for a foreign lawyer who did his LLM in the UK (but no degree in the US) to do the NY bar exam?

thx
Hi,

Is there any way for a foreign lawyer who did his LLM in the UK (but no degree in the US) to do the NY bar exam?

thx
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Hi guys,

Thank you for all the great information above. I know a lot of time has passed since the last post, but it would be great if any of you could reply back to this:

I did my LL.B. from King's College London and am currently pursuing my Masters from NYU, New York. I plan to sit the NY Bar this July and will qualify soon.

Assuming that I pass and combined with the fact that I actually did the LL.B. degree from England, will I also have to satisfy the 2 year requirement? I currently have no work experience. However, I may get a job offer to work for a big law firm in England. What should I do?

Any help will be much appreciated. Thanks
Hi guys,

Thank you for all the great information above. I know a lot of time has passed since the last post, but it would be great if any of you could reply back to this:

I did my LL.B. from King's College London and am currently pursuing my Masters from NYU, New York. I plan to sit the NY Bar this July and will qualify soon.

Assuming that I pass and combined with the fact that I actually did the LL.B. degree from England, will I also have to satisfy the 2 year requirement? I currently have no work experience. However, I may get a job offer to work for a big law firm in England. What should I do?

Any help will be much appreciated. Thanks
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amt233
I do not think your educational background fulfills the work experience requirement for the QLTT. The QLTT work experience requirement for foreign lawyers in its current iteration is nearly identical to the work experience requirement for UK trainees. Two years work experience, one of which must be practicing English law, and in three substantive areas.

Be aware, however, the SRA is looking to supplant the QLTT with a new qualification scheme (the QLTS). The differences will be fundamental -- and one of the changes being considered is scrapping the experience requirement altogether. They expect to enact and implement the new scheme sometime in 2010. A copy of the draft regulations and also of the results of a consultation are on the SRA website.

Good luck on the bar and finishing your Masters!
I do not think your educational background fulfills the work experience requirement for the QLTT. The QLTT work experience requirement for foreign lawyers in its current iteration is nearly identical to the work experience requirement for UK trainees. Two years work experience, one of which must be practicing English law, and in three substantive areas.

Be aware, however, the SRA is looking to supplant the QLTT with a new qualification scheme (the QLTS). The differences will be fundamental -- and one of the changes being considered is scrapping the experience requirement altogether. They expect to enact and implement the new scheme sometime in 2010. A copy of the draft regulations and also of the results of a consultation are on the SRA website.

Good luck on the bar and finishing your Masters!
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Yes. I just went to the QLTS site which says that it will remove the experience requirement. The new provisions come in effect in Sept 2010.

But again, does this mean that I definitely DO NOT have to give the LPC?

Thanks for your help.
Yes. I just went to the QLTS site which says that it will remove the experience requirement. The new provisions come in effect in Sept 2010.

But again, does this mean that I definitely DO NOT have to give the LPC?

Thanks for your help.
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amt233
Well, it would seem so. But I would be in touch with the SRA about it.

I hadn't thought about it, but it appears that UK LLB students could replace the LPC with a US LLM. It probably costs a lot more -- but you save 2 years and you end up with a dual qualification.
Well, it would seem so. But I would be in touch with the SRA about it.

I hadn't thought about it, but it appears that UK LLB students could replace the LPC with a US LLM. It probably costs a lot more -- but you save 2 years and you end up with a dual qualification.
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CR1 -

It appears that you can take the NY Bar without a US law degree, so long as you have a law degree from (or were previously admitted in) a common law country. Everyone else needs at least 20 credit hours (basically just over one semester) from an American law school.

(See http://www.nycourts.gov/ctapps/520rules.htm#6 for the details)

That said, the bar passage rate for non-US applicants is very low in comparison to US law school grads. I tend to think that a lot of this is due to non-native English speakers, but I wouldn't assume that it would be a walk in the park or anything. And I would definitely recommend taking a bar review course if you decided to go down that route without first doing an LLM or something.
CR1 -

It appears that you can take the NY Bar without a US law degree, so long as you have a law degree from (or were previously admitted in) a common law country. Everyone else needs at least 20 credit hours (basically just over one semester) from an American law school.

(See http://www.nycourts.gov/ctapps/520rules.htm#6 for the details)

That said, the bar passage rate for non-US applicants is very low in comparison to US law school grads. I tend to think that a lot of this is due to non-native English speakers, but I wouldn't assume that it would be a walk in the park or anything. And I would definitely recommend taking a bar review course if you decided to go down that route without first doing an LLM or something.
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Oops, CR1, just noticed you said you did an LLM in the UK rather than an LLB. Since an LLM isn't the educational requirement for admission in the UK, I don't think it would qualify under 520.6. Depending on where you did your undergraduate law studies, though, you may qualify anyway or you might be able to petition to take the exam. Otherwise, you might have to do a US LLM.
Oops, CR1, just noticed you said you did an LLM in the UK rather than an LLB. Since an LLM isn't the educational requirement for admission in the UK, I don't think it would qualify under 520.6. Depending on where you did your undergraduate law studies, though, you may qualify anyway or you might be able to petition to take the exam. Otherwise, you might have to do a US LLM.
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TheLLBMan
I am eligible to sit for the New York bar examinations with the following credentials:

- an 3 years full-time LLB from a top UK university (University of Warwick)
- an LLM from the University of Bristol (full-time)
- an LPC from the Oxford Institute of Legal Practice (full-time)

I did not have to send a letter confirming durational requirements.

My reading of the regulations is that a 3 year full time LLB at a recognised law school in the UK should be sufficient to sit for the exam. In the New York Board of Law Examiner's letter confirming my eligibility, they clearly stated that "we have determined from YOUR TRANSCRIPTS that you are eligible to take the New York State bar examination under Section 520.6..."

Your transcripts should be enough and I sent the transcripts myself to the Board. However, just to be on the safe side, I also sent a letter from the SRA confirming that I had completed my academic requirements to practice law in England & Wales. I also sent my transcripts for my LLM, LLM and LPC.

The Board gave a decision within 6 weeks.

A note for applicants: online degrees or distance learning law degrees are NOT accepted. CPE is not accepted. If you've done a degree other than law, and then converted with a CPE and LPC, you must still undertake a training contract to "cure" your durational requirement deficiency under section 520.6 of the Rules of the Court of Appeals.

You cannot simply take your law degree, sit the bar exams and then practice in the UK as a solicitor. If you opt for that route, you will still have to satisfy the "working requirement" by working as a paralegal for 1.5 years in the UK in order to qualify. Might as well do the LPC and do a 2 year TC.

In preparing for the NY Bar exam, I did the Barbri course, the Kaplan PMBR MBE Combination course, the Micromash course and the BarWrite 3 day essay boot camp+MPT workshop. If you're going to sit for the exam, you might as well investment adequately and prepare well. However, please note that I over prepared. One bar review course should be enough, followed by a barwrite workshop or a kaplan MBE course.

Good luck!
I am eligible to sit for the New York bar examinations with the following credentials:

- an 3 years full-time LLB from a top UK university (University of Warwick)
- an LLM from the University of Bristol (full-time)
- an LPC from the Oxford Institute of Legal Practice (full-time)

I did not have to send a letter confirming durational requirements.

My reading of the regulations is that a 3 year full time LLB at a recognised law school in the UK should be sufficient to sit for the exam. In the New York Board of Law Examiner's letter confirming my eligibility, they clearly stated that "we have determined from YOUR TRANSCRIPTS that you are eligible to take the New York State bar examination under Section 520.6..."

Your transcripts should be enough and I sent the transcripts myself to the Board. However, just to be on the safe side, I also sent a letter from the SRA confirming that I had completed my academic requirements to practice law in England & Wales. I also sent my transcripts for my LLM, LLM and LPC.

The Board gave a decision within 6 weeks.

A note for applicants: online degrees or distance learning law degrees are NOT accepted. CPE is not accepted. If you've done a degree other than law, and then converted with a CPE and LPC, you must still undertake a training contract to "cure" your durational requirement deficiency under section 520.6 of the Rules of the Court of Appeals.

You cannot simply take your law degree, sit the bar exams and then practice in the UK as a solicitor. If you opt for that route, you will still have to satisfy the "working requirement" by working as a paralegal for 1.5 years in the UK in order to qualify. Might as well do the LPC and do a 2 year TC.

In preparing for the NY Bar exam, I did the Barbri course, the Kaplan PMBR MBE Combination course, the Micromash course and the BarWrite 3 day essay boot camp+MPT workshop. If you're going to sit for the exam, you might as well investment adequately and prepare well. However, please note that I over prepared. One bar review course should be enough, followed by a barwrite workshop or a kaplan MBE course.

Good luck!
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P_Martini
My reading of the regulations is that a 3 year full time LLB at a recognised law school in the UK should be sufficient to sit for the exam.


I think it's a case-by-case review, but I second that statement in general.
<blockquote>My reading of the regulations is that a 3 year full time LLB at a recognised law school in the UK should be sufficient to sit for the exam.</blockquote>

I think it's a case-by-case review, but I second that statement in general.
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