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Information about Admission to the Montana Bar
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Eligibility for Admission:

To be eligible for admission, you must:

1. Have earned a JD from an ABA accredited law school;
2. Have been certified by the Commission on Character & Fitness;
3. Have submitted a qualifying MPRE score;
4. Have submitted a qualifying UBE score (whether by exam or transfer);
5. Have attended the Montana Law Seminar;
6. Have paid your license tax and dues to the State Bar of Montana.

Application for Admission:

Whether applying for admission by exam or transfer of UBE score, all applicants must complete the online NCBE Application for Montana. A signed original application must be mailed to the Montana Bar Admissions office, with the Montana Application Cover Page, all documents required on the Montana Application Checklist and the Montana application fee. A second signed original application must be mailed to the NCBE with their investigation fee.

You are required to have an email address as email will be our primary communication method with you. The Guide to Montana Bar Admissions provides detailed information about applying for admission with links to forms, instructions and the application.

Upcoming Dates for Uniform Bar Exam & Montana Law Seminar:

  • February 2015- Exam: February 24-25, MLS: February 26th, Great Northern Hotel, Helena.  Application Deadline: Postmarked by October 1, 2015

  • July 2015 - Exam: July 28-29, MLS: July 30th, University Center, UM Campus, MissoulaApplication Deadline: Postmarked by March 15, 2015

Fees, Deadlines & Bar Exam Information:

Applications for examination must be postmarked or hand-delivered to the Bar Admissions Administrator on or before the stated deadline.  For exam applicants
, the deadline for the February administration is October 1st and the deadline for the July administration is March 15th.  Late applications will not be accepted without a Court Order approving late filing. If the Montana Supreme Court grants a petition for late application, a late filing fee will be charged in addition to the application fee. 

UBE-transfer applicants may submit an application at any time, but must submit the application no less than 30 days prior to attendance at the Montana Law Seminar.  Attendance at the MLS does not qualify an applicant for admission however, and all eligibility requirements must be fulfilled before admission will be granted.  (The character and fitness investigation typically takes no less than 90 days after submission of an application.)  Concurrent applications will be accepted, but the applicant must attend the next scheduled Montana Law Seminar and a UBE score of 270 must be certified by the NCBE before an applicant is eligible for admission. 

To pay application fees, send a check or money order with the completed application or pay application fees online and mail a copy of the confirmation of payment with your completed application. NOTE:
A separate application fee is charged for the NCBE Character & Fitness Application. The NCBE Application (page i.) includes categories for Law Student Registration and Foreign Educated or Foreign-Licensed Attorneys. Montana does not at this time accept early applications for law students or recognize foreign applicants. All applicants are required to hold a JD from an ABA accredited school.

The Uniform Bar Exam (UBE):

Montana will accept the transfer of a score of 270 or greater from a qualified UBE exam within three years of the date of application. All UBE applicants are required to complete the application process outlined above through the NCBE and meet the requirements set forth in the Rules for Admission to the State Bar of Montana. Follow this link for more information about the Uniform Bar Exam.

The Montana Law Seminar (MLS):

All applicants must personally attend the Montana Law Seminar (MLS) as a requirement for admission. The MLS is given the day following each February and July bar exam at the site of the bar examination. 

Registration and pay for the UBE and MLS:

Registration for the Montana Law Seminar and/or the Uniform Bar Exam is open only to applicants to the Montana State Bar. These fees are not refundable and applicants may wait until they have been certified by the Commission on Character & Fitness before submitting the fee. Please register and pay online or send a check or money order to Montana Bar Admissions at PO Box 577, Helena, MT 59624. 

Defer to the next scheduled admission cycle:

An applicant’s failure to appear for examination without first requesting a deferral in writing will result in the application being dismissed. After three deferrals, an applicant shall submit a new application and pay the application filing fee. To defer to the next exam, send the completed Addendum/Deferral form to the Bar Admissions Administrator with a check or you may pay the $20 fee online.

Reciprocity and Admission on Motion:

Montana does not have reciprocity and there is no admission on motion. All applicants are required to sit for the Bar exam or may transfer a UBE score of 270 or higher earned within 3 years from the date of application. 

ADA and Special Accommodation Requests:  

If you have a medical, physical, or cognitive disability, you may request that the bar examination be administered under reasonable conditions to accommodate your needs. You must make your request by submitting the Request for Testing Accommodation forms. An applicant who claims a disability and who seeks an accommodation on the bar examination must submit a request for the accommodation with supporting documentation by the application deadline. Applications for accommodations not submitted by the application deadline will not be considered, except where the disability occurs after the application filing deadline. 

Uniform Bar Exam (UBE) Scores:

 It is the applicant's responsibility to have UBE scores from another jurisdiction certified to the State Bar of Montana. ALL applicants are required to sit for the Uniform Bar Exam (the MEE, MPT and MBE) or meet the requirements to transfer a UBE score. To have your UBE score certified to Montana, contact the National Conference of Bar Examiners at http://www.ncbex.org/about-ncbe-exams/ube/ube-transcript-services/.  

Multistate Bar Exam (MBE) Scores:

Montana no longer accepts transferred MBE scores and all examinees must sit for the MEE, MPT and MBE in a single exam cycle to earn a UBE score. 

Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam (MPRE) Scores: 

A MPRE score of 80 or better earned within 3 years is not required prior to sitting for the UBE, but is required prior to admission to the Montana Bar. Montana does not give the MPRE, but information about registration and testing locations for the MPRE is available on the NCBE's website. It is the applicant's responsibility to have MPRE scores certified to the State Bar of Montana. Contact the NCBE at http://www.ncbex.org/multistate-tests/mpre/mpre-score-reporting-services/ to request your certified score be provided to Montana. A qualifying score must be certified to the Bar Admissions Administrator no later than nine (9) months after notification of successful completion of the Montana Bar Examination.  

Certified Application Requests:

To request that a copy of your Application to Montana be provided to another jurisdiction, please complete this request form or send a written request and a $15 check to Bar Admissions Administrator, State Bar of Montana, P.O. Box 577, Helena, MT 59624. Note: Application files are maintained for five years, after which, if no litigation is pending concerning the application, the file may be destroyed. 

Bar Review Course: 

The Montana Board of Bar Examiners is not affiliated with any bar review course. The National Conference of Bar Examiners is responsible for development of the MEE, MPT and MBE, and we encourage applicants to review the NCBE website for study materials as well as mock exams and other exam preparation. Consult the Board of Bar Examiners' rules and review the information provided by the Bar Admissions Administrator and the National Conference of Bar Examiners.