Wednesday, September 26, 2012

First In Her Class Applicant Admitted In Minnesota Without Examination

The Minnesota Supreme Court has admitted without examination an applicant for bar admission who did not meet the educational requirements for admission on motion.

The court majority found that the applicant had exceeded the high standards set for waiver of the educational requirements for admission to practice on motion. The issue was her foreign undergraduate and legal education. Minnesota requires applicants to have a degree from an ABA accredited law swchool.

The applicant had graduated first in her class at the University College Cork in Ireland with a BA in civil law and fourth in her Masters of Law class at Cambridge. She took and passed the New York Bar examination and practiced at Paul Weiss, the public defender section of the Legal Aid Society, O'Melvany & Myers and in her own private practice.

She relocated to Minnesota when her spouse took a position at the University of Minnesota. She was appointed as a practitioner in residence at the University of Minnesota Law School.

A concurring/dissenting opinion agreed that the applicant did not meet the educational requirements for admission but would deny admission on motion because she had only demonstrated that requiring her to pass the Minnesota bar exam would present an inconvenience, but not a hardship that would justify admission without examination.  (Mike Frisch)

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