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Florida bar exam date changed to avoid primary election day

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Florida Board of Bar Examiners SealThe Florida Board of Bar Examiners, with the approval of the Supreme Court of Florida, announces a change to the date of the August 2020 bar examination. To avoid a conflict with the August 18 primary election in Florida, the August 2020 bar examination will now be administered on Wednesday, August 19.

“It is important that every citizen in Florida be assured that they are able to vote in the upcoming primary election, whether by mail, early voting, or in person,” said David Reeves, chair of the Florida Board of Bar Examiners. “With the administration of the examination in an online format, we are able shift the date without impacting the grading schedule.”

On July 1, The Florida Board of Bar Examiners cancelled the in-person administration of the General Bar Examination scheduled for July 28 and 29 in Tampa and Orlando. In its place, the board planned to administer an online bar examination on August 18. That’s now been changed to August 19.

According to the FBBE, here is how the exam will be administered:

  • The August 2020 bar exam will consist of 100 multiple-choice questions and three essay questions and may cover any subject that is traditionally tested on Part A or Part B of the General Bar Examination.  Any subject may be tested by essay, multiple-choice, or both.
  • For the August 2020 bar exam cycle only, applicants will not be required to take the Multistate Bar Examination to establish technical competence. A scaled score of 136 on the August 2020 bar examination and a passing score on the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination will be sufficient.
  • Applicants who have passed one part of the General Bar Examination, but have not passed both parts, must pass the August 2020 bar examination to establish technical competence.
  • Applicants sitting for the August 2020 bar examination must have access to the technology necessary to take an online examination, including access to a computer with a webcam and the internet to allow for proctoring. The board will not provide this technology to any applicant.  The board will not provide technical support during the administration of the examination.
  • The board’s vendor for the August 2020 bar examination is ILG, its vendor for laptop use during an in-person examination. Every applicant sitting for the August 2020 bar examination must have access to a computer that has installed the necessary ILG software. This includes applicants who previously elected to hand-write their essay responses. Applicants who have already installed ILG software in preparation for the in-person General Bar Examination will need to update the software and complete the trial exam, which includes a test of the remote exam check-in process and an overview of the format of the embedded essay and multiple-choice questions.
  • Most applicants already have paid the laptop fee and will not incur any additional fees for the August 2020 bar examination. Applicants who previously had elected to hand-write their essay responses will be required to pay the laptop fee. The board will waive fees for any applicant who postpones to the next administration of the General Bar Examination. For applicants who postpone, examination and laptop fees already paid will apply to the next administration of the exam.
  • The board will extend the deadline for applying for test accommodations under the ADA relating to the online format to July 10. Test accommodation petitions under the extended deadline must be received by July 10.  No further extensions will be granted.

Applicants should check the Board’s website regularly for additional announcements about the upcoming General Bar Examination.

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