Law school is only a prelude to legal practice for most pre-laws. And on the way is the bar exam, a hurdle that has to be surmounted. The Wall St. Journal reports today that California’s bar frequently bars the way to legal practice, or at least causes even the talented to stumble. According to today’s article, "Raising the Bar:Even Top Lawyers Fail California Exam," former Stanford Law Dean and constitutional law expert, Kathleen Sullivan, recently flunked the California bar exam. She is only one of a long list of notables that failed it, at least initially.
And the stats should give all those miserable flunking legal stars confidence that they have a lot of company: According to the National Conference of Bar Examiners, just 44% of those who took the California bar in 2004 passed, the lowest percentage in the country, versus a national average of 64%.
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