Utah Admission Laws

Board of Bar Commissioners, upon delegation of the Utah Supreme Court, administers the process of admissions to the state Bar.  Rules governing admission are prescribed by the Utah Court Rules governing the Utah State Bar.  All applicants should have attained at least 21 years of age.  Applicants should have graduated with a first professional degree in law, juris doctorate or Bachelor of Laws, or equivalent degree from an approved law school.

Applicants are required to take and pass the state Bar exam.  The exam consists of essay questions, Multistate Performance Test (MPT) and the Multistate Bar Examination (MBE).  One essay question will be on legal ethics.  Additionally applicants should also pass the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination (MPRE) with a scaled score of 86.  Bar Examinations taken on or before July 2004 required only a scaled score of 80 in MPRE.

Utah Bar admits attorneys admitted to the practice of law before the highest court of a sister state or any other jurisdiction of the United States where admission by motion is authorized and the applicant meets all other requirements of this rule.  Such attorney applicants should have been licensed to practice in such a jurisdiction which allows the admission of licensed Utah lawyers under substantially similar terms and conditions set forth in Utah Court Rules.  S/he should have been engaged in the active practice of law, in good standing, for at least three of the previous four years immediately preceding the date of the filing of the application for admission in Utah.

Every attorney admitted to the Utah Bar should mandatorily complete a minimum of 24 hours of accredited continuing legal education.  Three out of the 24 hours should be on ethics or professional responsibility.  One out of the three hours should be in the area of professionalism and civility.

Utah R. Judicial Admin Rule 14-703

Rule 14-703. Qualifications for admission of student, student attorney, and foreign law school applicants.
(a) Requirements of student and student attorney applicants. The burden of proof is on the applicant to establish by clear and convincing evidence that he or she:
(1) has paid the prescribed fees and timely filed the required application in accordance with Rule 14-707;
(2) is at least 21 years old;
(3) has graduated with a first professional degree in law (Juris Doctorate or Bachelor of Laws) from an approved law school;
(4) is of good moral character and has satisfied the requirements of Rule 14-708;
(5) has successfully passed the student Bar Examination as prescribed in Rule 14-710;
(6) has successfully passed the MPRE as prescribed in Rule 14-713; and .
(7) has complied with the provisions of Rule 14-716 concerning licensing and enrollment fees.
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Utah R. Judicial Admin Rule 14-704

Qualifications for admission of attorney applicants.
(a) Requirements of attorney applicants. The burden of proof is on the applicant to establish by clear and convincing evidence that he or she:
(1) has paid the prescribed fees and filed the required application as an attorney applicant in accordance with Rule 14-707;
(2) is at least 21 years old;
(3) has graduated with a first professional degree in law (Juris Doctorate or Bachelor of Laws) or equivalent degree from an approved law school;
(4) has been admitted to the practice of law before the highest court of a sister state or United States territory, or the District of Columbia for no fewer than five years, and have been substantially (meaning 50% or more) and lawfully engaged in the practice of law in the jurisdiction where licensed for any four of the five years immediately preceding the filing of the application.

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(5) is of good moral character and has satisfied the requirements of Rule 14-708;
(6) has successfully passed the Bar Examination as prescribed in Rule 14-710;
(7) has successfully passed the MPRE as prescribed in Rule 14-713; and .
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Utah R. Judicial Admin Rule 14-705

Rule 14-705. Admission on motion.
(a) Reciprocal admission. An admission on motion applicant may be admitted to the practice of law if the applicant has been admitted to the practice of law before the highest court of a sister state or United States territory or the District of Columbia where admission by motion is authorized and the applicant meets all other requirements of this rule. The burden of proof is on the applicant to establish by clear and convincing evidence that he or she meets each of the following requirements:
(1) has been admitted by bar examination to practice law before the highest court of a sister state or United States territory or the District of Columbia;
(2) holds a first professional degree in law (Juris Doctorate or Bachelor of Laws) from an approved law school;
(3) establish that the sister state or United States territory or the District of Columbia that licensed the applicant allows the admission of licensed Utah lawyers under terms and conditions similar to those set forth in this rule, provided that if the sister state or United States territory or the District of Columbia that licensed the applicant requires Utah lawyers to complete or meet other conditions or requirements, the applicant must meet a substantially similar requirement for admission in Utah;
(4) has been substantially and lawfully engaged in the active practice of law (meaning 50% or more) in the reciprocal jurisdiction where licensed for at least three of the previous four years immediately preceding the date of the filing of the application for admission under this rule;
(5) present satisfactory proof of both admission to the practice of law and that he or she is a member in good standing in all jurisdictions where currently admitted;

Utah R. Judicial Admin Rule 14-710

Rule 14-710. Composition of the Bar Examination.
(a) Student Bar Examination. The student Bar Examination shall include a written component and the MBE. The written component of the examination may consist of up to eight essay questions and two MPT questions. One essay question shall relate to legal ethics. Essay questions may be taken from the MEE and/or state prepared essay questions. Students and student attorney applicants are required to take the student Bar Examination.
(b) Attorney Bar Examination. The attorney Bar Examination shall consist of the written component of the student Bar Examination. Attorney applicants who meet the requirements set forth in Rule 14-704 are eligible to sit for the attorney Bar Examination.

Utah R. Judicial Admin Rule 14-713

MPRE.
(a) MPRE requirements. In addition to the requirements of Rule 14-716(e), an applicant must receive a passing score on the MPRE prior to admission to the Bar. The passing score must be achieved within two years of the date of the Bar Examination. A scaled score of 86 is considered passing. A scaled score of 80 will be considered passing for Bar Examinations taken on or before July 2004. It is the Applicant’s responsibility to insure that his or her MPRE score is reported to the Bar.

Utah R. Judicial Admin Rule 14-404

Rule 14-404. Active status lawyers: MCLE, NLTP and admission on motion requirements.
(a) Active status lawyers. Commencing with calendar year 2009, each lawyer admitted to practice in Utah shall complete, during each two fiscal year period (July 1 through June 30), a minimum of 24 hours of accredited CLE which shall include a minimum of three hours of accredited ethics or professional responsibility. One of the three hours of ethics or professional responsibility shall be in the area of professionalism and civility. Lawyers on inactive status are not subject to the requirements of this rule, including NLTP requirements.


Inside Utah Admission Laws