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Pennsylvania Admission Laws

Pennsylvania admission laws are stated in the Pennsylvania Bar Admission Rules and Rules for Continuing Legal Education.  Pennsylvania Supreme Court is the admitting body.

Applicant should hold a juris doctor degree or equivalent degree from a law school accredited by American Bar Association.  Undergraduate applicants should have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college/university.  Recognized exams are Multistate Bar Examination, Multistate Performance Test, and essay exam.  Applicant should also pass the Multistate Professional Responsibility Test with a scale score of 75.

Attorneys from other states are admitted to practice without exam in Pennsylvania, if the attorney’s state reciprocates to Pennsylvania, and if the attorney was involved in the practice of law for five out of eight years immediately preceding the application.

Each attorney should dedicate 12 hours yearly to Continuing Legal Education (CLE).

Pa. R.C.L.E. 105

“Rule 105.  Continuing Legal Education Requirement

   (a) General Requirement.
   1. Every active lawyer shall annually complete, during the compliance period to which he or she is assigned, the CLE required by the Board pursuant to these rules and established in Board regulations.
   2. CLE shall be on the subjects of: (i) substantive law, practice and procedure, (ii) lawyer ethics and the rules of professional conduct, (iii) professionalism, (iv) substance abuse as it affects lawyers and the practice of law.
   3. The minimum annual CLE requirement shall be nine (9) hours, effective September 1, 1994, and twelve (12) hours, effective September 1, 1995.
   (b) Fulfillment Requirements. The CLE requirement shall be fulfilled by attending the required number of CLE courses by providers or completing a CLE activity approved by the Board as sufficient to meet the CLE general requirement.
   (c) Every newly admitted attorney shall attend the Bridge the Gap program, of at least four (4) credit hours, sponsored by approved Bridge the Gap CLE provider prior to his or her first compliance deadline.”


Pa. B.A.R. 202

“Rule 202.  Admission to the Bar

   An applicant who complies with the requirements of Rule 203 (relating to admission of graduates of accredited institutions), Rule 204 (relating to admission of domestic attorneys) or Rule 205 (relating to admission of foreign attorneys) and the applicable rules of the Board shall be admitted to the bar of this Commonwealth in the manner prescribed by these rules.”

Inside Pennsylvania Admission Laws