Ultimate Guide to North Carolina Bar Exam

Your complete guide to North Carolina bar exam prep.

Pass Rates · Bar Review Courses · Format · Essay Topics · Schedule · Dates · Locations · Application Fees & Deadlines · What to Bring · Scores & Grading · Results · Reciprocity · Law Schools · Groups · Other Resources · Other Jurisdictions

*Updated September 2019

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North Carolina State Bar Exam | Basic Information

The North Carolina Bar Association (NCBA) was formed in 1899. The NCBA is a voluntary organization and has more than 20,000 members. There are about 28,000 licensed lawyers in North Carolina.

North Carolina is one of 30+ states that have adopted the Uniform Bar Examination (UBE) for their state bar review. North Carolina first administered the UBE in February 2019.

North Carolina Bar Exam Pass Rates

February 2019 (unknown)

Overall Pass Rate: unknown
First-Time Pass Rate: unknown
Repeat Pass Rate: unknown

Waiting for statistics…

July 2018 (697 takers)

Overall Pass Rate: 57%
First-Time Pass Rate: 73%
Repeat Pass Rate: 23%

February 2018 (505 takers)

Overall Pass Rate: 33%
First-Time Pass Rate: 48%
Repeat Pass Rate: 22%

July 2017 (1,019 takers)

Overall Pass Rate: 62%
First-Time Pass Rate: 72%
Repeat Pass Rate: 36%

North Carolina Bar Review Courses

Compare top North Carolina bar exam prep courses from Crushendo, Barbri, Themis, Kaplan, AmeriBar, BarMax, AdaptiBar, and Quimbee.

CrushendoBarbriThemisKaplanAmeriBarBarMaxAdaptiBarQuimbee
Cost$240-790$2,495-4,095$1,595-2,695$2,299-3,999$895-2,545$699-1,499$395-1,065$499-1,499
MBE
MEE
MPT
MPRE
NCBE Questions2,000+100+Unknown1,200+1,400+1,905+1,700+200+
Audio Flashcards
250+ Mnemonics
Facebook Rating5/5Disabled4.8/5DisabledDisabled4.4/54.4/5Disabled
Access PeriodLifetime3 months4 months4 monthsUp to 3 yearsLifetime5-7 months3 years
Financing3 payments$250 registration
Founded20171974200819381999201020032007
Phone(385) 482-1776(888) 322-7274(888) 843-6476(626) 390-7170(877) 942-2763(800) 529-2651(877) 466-1250N/A

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 UBE Suite costs $790 and includes 2,000+ official questions from the NCBE.

Crushendo offers lifetime access to 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 bar prep programs cost $2,495-4,095 and include 100+ official NCBE questions from past bar exams.

Barbri offers access to its online products for three months.

Themis Bar Review is based in Chicago and was founded in 2008.

Themis publishes is pass rates publicly on its website.

Themis bar prep programs cost $1,595-2,695 and include an unknown amount of 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 it bar review offerings.

Kaplan’s bar prep programs cost $2,299-3,999 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 $895-2,545 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 exam prep programs cost $699-1,499 and include 1,905+ NCBE questions.

BarMax offers lifetime access to its online products.

Tarek Fadel founded AdaptiBar in 2003.

AdaptiBar’s bar exam prep programs cost $395-1,065 and include up to 1,700+ NCBE questions.

AdaptiBar offers access to its online products for 5-7 months.

Matt Sellers founded Quimbee in 2007.

Quimbee’s bar prep programs cost $499-1,499 and include up to 200+ NCBE questions.

Quimbee offers access to its online products for 3 years.

North Carolina State Bar Exam Format

What’s the format of the UBE?

The UBE is administered twice each year in North Carolina (in February, and July). The examination is administered over two days, in four, three-hour sessions. The UBE has three parts: the Multistate Bar Exam (MBE), the Multistate Essay Exam (MEE), and the Multistate Performance Test (MPT).

MBE

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 UBE score.

MEE

The MEE consists of six 30-minute legal essays. Your MEE score comprises 30% of your UBE score.

North Carolina 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, Real Property, Secured Transactions, Torts, Trusts and Estates, etc.

Crushendo offers the most recent MEE questions and includes the point sheets that the graders used.

MPT

The MPT consists of two 90-minute tasks where you analyze and apply laws to specific scenarios. Your MPT score comprises 20% of your UBE score. Crushendo offers the most recent MPT questions and includes the point sheets that the graders used.

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, Locations

Schedule

MorningAfternoon
Day 1MEE (3 hours)MPT (3 hours)
Day 2MBE (3 hours)MBE (3 hours)

Dates

  • February 25-26, 2020
  • July 28-29, 2020
  • February 23-24, 2021
  • July 27-28, 2021
  • February 22-23, 2022
  • July 26-27, 2022
  • February 21-22, 2023
  • July 25-26, 2023

Locations

Raleigh

Jane S. McKimmon Center at North Carolina State University
1101 Gorman St
Raleigh, NC 27606

or

North Carolina State Fairgrounds
1025 Blue Ridge Rd
Raleigh, NC 27607

*Learn more about NC bar exam dates and test locations.

North Carolina Bar Exam Application

Are you interested in taking the North Carolina bar exam? Here’s some basic information about applying to take the North Carolina bar exam.

The application fee for non-licensed applicants is $850. The application fee for licensed attorneys is $1,650.

An additional fee of $250 is due if your application is late.

For those who wish to use a laptop to write their bar exam essays there is an additional fee of $125. It costs $1,275-$1,575 to transfer your UBE score from another jurisdiction.

The application fee for those seeking admission by comity/admission on motion is $2,000.

Total cost for most first-time takers: $850-$2,025

*See NCBLE.org for a breakdown of the fees and deadlines.

If you are taking the bar exam for the first time, and wish to take the February 2019 bar exam, you should submit your application between August 1, 2019 – October 1, 2019. The application late period is October 2, 2019 – November 5, 2019.

If you wish to take the July 2019 bar exam, you should submit your application between November 6, 2019 – January 7, 2020. The application late period is January 8, 2020 – March 3, 2020.

*Refer to NCBLE.org for deadlines for licensed attorneys and other applicants.

*There’s no limit on how many times you can take the North Carolina bar exam.

In addition to passing the North Carolina bar exam with a score of at least 270, there are several requirements you must meet in order to be admitted to practice law in North Carolina, including:

  1. Be at least 18 years old.
  2. Have a law degree from an approved law school.
  3. Score 80 or higher on the MPRE within the accepted time frame.
  4. Have four people complete the Certificate of Moral Character Form and mail it to the North Carolina Board of Law Examiner’s office.
  5. Submit documents to the Board as the listed in Rule .0402 (birth certificate copy, passport-sized photo, North Carolina fingerprint cards, official college and law school transcripts, etc.).
  6. Complete a board-approved course in North Carolina law.

North Carolina State Board of Law Examiners

Physical address:

North Carolina Board of Law Examiners
5510 Six Forks Rd., Suite 300
Raleigh, NC 27609

Phone number: (919) 848-4229

Mailing address:

North Carolina Board of Law Examiners
5510 Six Forks Rd., Suite 300
Raleigh, NC 27609

Email address: info@ncble.org

North Carolina Bar Exam: What to Bring

What to bring

Important notes

  • The following items will be provided at the testing center: pens, pencils, erasers, highlighters, scratch paper, ear plugs, and an applicant ID card.
  • There will be clocks in each exam room.
  • If using a MacBook to complete the essay portion of the exam, the Board will provide you a USB to USB-C adapter and a USB flashdrive.

Permitted items

  • 1 clear plastic zip-top bag (no larger than 1-quart) may include the following items: Driver’s License, Photo Identification Card, Social Security Card, health insurance card, hotel key, car keys, money, credit cards, sunglasses, reading glasses, lip balm, eye drops, feminine hygiene products.
  • A lightweight, pocket-free outer garment.

Prohibited items

  • Electronic devices
  • Wallets
  • Cases for eyeglasses
  • Watches, timers
  • Cell phones
  • Food, drinks
  • Bar review materials
  • External keyboards, keyboard covers
  • Computer mouses, adapters
  • Fitbits, activity trackers
  • Written/printed materials
  • Weapons
  • CDs, DVDs
  • Bags, purses, backpacks, briefcases, laptop bags
  • Scarves, hats (unless you receive prior written approval)

*More information on what you can and cannot bring to the testing center.

North Carolina Bar Exam Scores and Grading

A passing score for the UBE in North Carolina is 270/400. Scores of the three tests comprising the UBE are weighted as follows:

  • MBE = 50% of your total UBE score
  • MEE = 30%
  • MPT = 20%

*A passing score for the MPRE in North Carolina is 80/150.

North Carolina Bar Review Course

Crushendo’s comprehensive UBE Suite comes with everything you need to crush the North Carolina bar exam.

  • MBE, MEE, MPT, and MPRE Prep
  • 250+ Proprietary Mnemonics
  • 2,000+ Licensed NCBE Questions
  • Audio Flashcards
  • Lifetime Access
Learn More

North Carolina Bar Exam Results

View the North Carolina Bar Exam pass list.

Frequently Asked Questions

When are my North Carolina bar exam results released?

Bar exam results are usually mailed out about a month after the exam date.

Can I see my North Carolina bar exam score?

You will be able to see your score if you failed the bar exam.

Can I appeal to have my North Carolina bar exam re-graded?

No.

How many times can I take the bar exam in North Carolina?

There’s no limit to how many times you can take the bar exam in North Carolina.

North Carolina Bar Exam Reciprocity

Applicants seeking admission to the bar in North Carolina without taking the bar exam, must comply with Rule .0502 – Requirements for Comity Applicants.

Reciprocity/Comity Requirements Overview

In order to be eligible for admission by motion/comity in North Carolina, you must:

  • Have practiced law for four of the six years prior to your application.
  • Have four people complete the Certificate of Moral Character Form and mail it to the Board.
  • Submit multiple documents to the Board (a recent photo, two sets of clear fingerprints, official college and law school transcripts, a certificate of good standing, a certificate of admission to the bar in other state, a copy of all applications for admission to practice law in any U.S. jurisdiction, a court certificate, etc.).
  • Pay a fee of $2,000 to the Board.
  • Have practiced law in an approved, reciprocal jurisdiction.
  • Be of good moral character in accordance with standards set forth in Rule .0600.
  • Have a law degree from a law school approved by the Council of The North Carolina State Bar. (see Rule .0702)
  • Not have failed the North Carolina bar examination in the five years prior to submitting your application.
  • Have passed the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination.

Reciprocal Jurisdictions: Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming.

*For more information, refer to Rule .0502.

Law Schools in North Carolina

Here’s a list of ABA Accredited law schools in North Carolina.

Campbell Law School

  • Founded: 1976
  • Located: Raleigh, NC
  • Enrollment: About 450 students
  • Tuition Cost: ~$42,600
  • Bar Passage Rate: 82.4% (first-time takers)
  • Website: law.campbell.edu

Duke University School of Law

Elon University School of Law

  • Founded: 2006
  • Located: Greensboro, NC
  • Enrollment: About 130 students (2014)
  • Tuition Cost: ~$38,000
  • Bar Passage Rate: 70% (February 2019 first-time takers)
  • Website: elon.edu/e/law

North Carolina Central University School of Law

  • Founded: 1939
  • Located: Durham, NC
  • Enrollment: About 300 students
  • Tuition Cost: ~$36,000
  • Bar Passage Rate: 75.5% (July 2018)
  • Website: law.nccu.edu

University of North Carolina School of Law

  • Founded: 1845
  • Located: Chapel Hill, NC
  • Enrollment: About 760 students (2010)
  • Tuition Cost: ~$41,600
  • Bar Passage Rate: 86.8% (July 2018 first-time takers)
  • Website: law.unc.edu

Wake Forest University School of Law

  • Founded: 1894
  • Located: Winston-Salem, NC
  • Enrollment: About 525 students
  • Tuition Cost: ~$46,270
  • Bar Passage Rate: 81% (2016)
  • Website: law.wfu.edu

Helpful Groups

Here are some Facebook groups you may find helpful before, and after passing the bar exam:

Campbell Law School

Duke University School of Law

Elon University School of Law

North Carolina Central University School of Law

University of North Carolina School of Law

Wake Forest University School of Law