Ultimate Guide to Hawaii State Bar Exam
Your complete guide to the Hawaii State Bar Exam.
Pass Rates · Bar Review Courses · Format · Essay Topics · Schedule · Dates · Location · Application Fees & Deadlines · What to Bring · Scores & Grading · Results · Reciprocity · Law Schools · Groups · Other Resources · Other Jurisdictions
*Updated July 2022
Hawaii State Bar Exam | Basic Information
The Hawaii State Bar was started in 1899 and has over 8,000 members. Participation is required for all practicing lawyers in Hawaii.
Hawaii is not a Uniform Bar Exam (UBE) state, because part of the Hawaii Bar Exam is jurisdiction specific. However, the Hawaii Bar Exam still includes each component of the UBE: the Multistate Bar Examination (MBE), the Multistate Essay Exam (MEE), and the Multistate Performance Test (MPT).
Hawaii also requires that the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination (MPRE) be passed in order to practice there.
February 2021 (94 takers)
July 2021 (175 takers)
July 2020 (111 takers)
|Access Period||Lifetime||8-10 weeks||4 months||4 months||Up to 3 years||Lifetime|
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Last updated: 1/7/23
*Cost ignores promotions and live tutoring.
Crushendo’s written and audio outlines utilize 250+ proprietary mnemonics to help you memorize everything you need to know to pass the bar exam on your first try.
Crushendo’s complete bar prep course, the UBE Suite, costs $970 and includes 1,750+ official practice questions from the NCBE.
Crushendo offers lifetime access for all of its bar exam prep products.
Adam Balinski founded Crushendo Bar Review in 2017 (read the founding story here).
The Harcourt publishing company founded Barbri in 1974 when it acquired two bar review programs. Since its founding, Barbri has been owned by large firms including Thomson Reuters and Leeds Equity Partners.
Barbri products have been used by more than a million law school students. In the last 20 years Barbri has settled multiple antitrust lawsuits.
Barbri’s traditional bar prep programs cost $1,999-4,199 and some include 100+ official NCBE questions from past bar exams.
Barbri offers access to its traditional, full-time bar prep course for 8-10 weeks, but early access can be purchased.
Themis Bar Review is based in Chicago and was founded in 2008.
Themis’s bar prep program costs $2,695 and includes 1,350+ NCBE questions.
Themis offers access to its online products for four months.
Stanley Kaplan founded Kaplan, Inc. in 1938.
Kaplan jumped into the bar review space in 2006 when it acquired PMBR, a company that provides test prep for the MBE. In 2008 Kaplan expanded its bar review offerings.
Kaplan’s bar prep programs cost $2,199-3,999 and include 1,200+ NCBE questions.
Kaplan offers access to its online products for four months.
Alexander Nakis founded AmeriBar in 1999. It’s headquartered in Tallahassee, Florida.
AmeriBar’s bar exam prep programs cost $1,299-2,599 and include 1,400+ NCBE questions.
AmeriBar offers access to its online products for up to three years.
Michael Ghaffary and Mehran Ebadolahi founded BarMax in 2010.
BarMax’s bar prep course costs $1,895 and includes 1,700+ NCBE questions.
BarMax offers lifetime access to its online products.
What’s the format of the Hawaii Bar?
The Hawaii Bar is administered twice each year in Hawaii (in February and July). The examination is administered over two days in four sessions. The Hawaii Bar has four parts: the Multistate Bar Exam (MBE), the Multistate Essay Exam (MEE), the Multistate Performance Test (MPT), and the Hawaii Legal Ethics Examination.
The MBE is a six-hour test and consists of 200 multiple-choice questions that test your understanding across seven subjects. Your MBE score comprises 50% of your overall score.
Crushendo offers affordable, comprehensive written and audio outlines for MBE subjects (in addition to MEE and MPRE subjects).
The MEE consists of six 30-minute legal essays.
Hawaii bar exam essay topics may include the following: Business Associations, Civil Procedure, Conflict of Laws, Constitutional Law, Contracts, Criminal Law and Procedure, Evidence, Family Law, Property, Secured Transactions, Torts, Trusts, Unincorporated Business Entities, Wills and Estates, etc.
Crushendo offers the most recent MEE questions and includes the point sheets that the graders used.
The MPT consists of two 90-minute tasks where you analyze and apply laws to specific scenarios. Crushendo offers the most recent MPT questions and includes the point sheets that the graders used.
The Hawaii Legal Ethics Examination is a 30 minute exam with 15 questions. This exam is based on the Hawaii Rules of Professional Conduct.
What’s the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination?
The Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination (MPRE) tests your understanding of established standards of conduct for lawyers. The MPRE is administered three times each year (in March, August, and November). The test consists of 60 multiple-choice questions and is two hours long. Check out this MPRE Tips video!
Upcoming Bar Exam Schedule, Dates, Location
Are you interested in taking the Hawaii State bar exam? Here’s some basic information on applying to take the Hawaii bar exam.
The Hawaii Bar application fee for most takers is $500.
*Visit the Hawaii State Bar Admission Office’s website for more information.
If you desire to take the bar exam in February, you must submit your application by November 1. If you want to take the July bar exam, you must submit your application by April 1.
In addition to passing the Hawaii bar exam with a score of at least 268, there are several requirements that must be met in order to be admitted as an attorney in Hawaii, including:
- Score 85 or higher on the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination (MPRE) within the accepted time frame.
- Certificate from Committee of Character and Fitness
- Be a graduate of an ABA approved law school
- Complete the Hawaii Professionalism course
Hawaii State Bar Admissions Office
417 South King Street
Honolulu, Hawai`i 96813-2943
What to bring
- Your current driver’s license.
- Your Bar Examination Identification & Certification Card that has your photo, NCBE number, and examinee number.
- You need to have these items with you for each of the four testing sessions.
- Laptop testers should not bring their laptop in a case or bag.
- Any item that can connect to the internet
- Any item that can record audio or video
- Food or drink
- Scratch papers
- Study materials
View pass lists for previous years.
Frequently Asked Questions
When are my Hawaii bar exam results released?
Hawaii bar exam results are usually posted six to nine weeks after the exam date. February bar exam results are normally posted in April. July bar exam results are normally posted in October.
Can I see my Hawaii bar exam score?
If you passed the Hawaii bar exam, you won’t be able to see your score. If you failed the exam, you will receive your written examination back.
Can I appeal to have my Hawaii bar exam re-graded?
How many times can I take the bar exam in Hawaii?
There is no limit to how many times you can take the bar in Hawaii.
Here’s a list of law schools in Hawaii.
William S. Richardson School of Law
- Founded: 1973
- Located: Honolulu, HI
- Enrollment: about 300
- Tuition Cost: $22,908 View tuition breakdown
- Bar Passage Rate: 81%
- ABA Accredited: Yes
- Website: law.hawaii.edu
Here are some Facebook groups you may find helpful before, and after, passing the bar exam:
William S. Richardson School of Law
More helpful resources and study materials to help you pass the Hawaii State Bar Exam: