California Bar Examination

Bar Exam Information

NOTE: Bar exam information is subject to change without notice. Please verify with California bar examiner’s office.


2024: February 27-28, July 30-31

The California Bar Exam is a 2-day exam.

Day 1:

  • Three 60-minute essay questions (in the AM).
  • Two 60-minute essay questions (in the PM).
  • One 90-minute Performance Test (in the PM).

Day 2:
Multistate Bar Exam (MBE), a 200-question, multiple-choice exam (100 questions in the AM, 100 questions in the PM).

The State Bar of California Office of Admissions

Los Angeles Office:
Office of Admissions
State Bar of California
845 S. Figueroa St.
Los Angeles, CA 90017-2515

Phone: 213-765-1000

San Francisco Office:
Office of Admissions
State Bar of California
180 Howard St.
San Francisco, CA 94105

Phone: 415-538-2000


Subjects Tested

Multistate Bar Exam (MBE)

California Essay Subjects

California Performance Test

“Closed universe” practical questions using instructions, factual data, cases, statutes and other reference material supplied by examiners.

Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam

A scaled score of 86 on the MPRE is required for admission.


The MBE score is 50% of the total score, while the written portion accounts for the other 50%.

A passing score of 1,390 or greater on a 2,000 point scale is required based on the combined scores of the California Performance Test, the essay questions, and the MBE.

First Year Law Students' Examination

First-year law students completing their first year of study in a juris doctor degree program at a State Bar-unaccredited registered law school, through the Law Office Study Program and those without two years of college work attending a Committee of Bar Examiners- or an American Bar Association-accredited law school must take the First-Year Law Students’ Examination after completing their first year of law study. 

Law students who have been advanced to their second year of law study at an ABA or California-accredited law school and completed a minimum of 60 semester or 90 quarter units of undergraduate work are generally exempt from the examination.


Admission on Motion

California does not provide for admission on motion. Examination is required of all applicants. Attorneys who have been licensed in another jurisdiction for four years may be eligible to sit for the attorney exam (written exam only).

Acceptance of MBE Score

California does not accept an MBE score from an exam taken in another jurisdiction.

Download printable PDF

Booklet includes info on every U.S. jurisdiction.


Printable PDF booklet
includes info on every
U.S. jurisdiction.

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