State-by-State Bar Exam Information: Vermont

Bar Information


Key Dates

When is the Bar Exam: 

The last Tue and Wed of February and July

When is the application for the July exam made available: 

At any time

By when is the application for the July exam due?: 

May 1st

Exam Details

What tests and types of questions are on the bar exam?: 

Written: Four Vermont essays and two performance tests from the Multistate Performance Test

Multiple-choice: The Multistate Bar Examination

How is the bar exam structured?: 


What subjects are tested: 

The MBE tests Contracts, Criminal Law, Constitutional Law, Evidence, Real Property, and Torts.

Drawn directly from the Vermont Board of Bar Examiners' website: The Vermont essay questions can cover:

•    administrative law
•    bankruptcy
•    business organizations
•    civil procedure
•    commercial law (including the Uniform Commercial Code)
•    Vermont and federal constitutional law
•    contracts
•    criminal law and procedure
•    equity
•    ethics
•    evidence
•    family law (including juvenile law)
•    general practice skills
•    personal and real property (including foreclosure)
•    torts
•    taxation
•    trusts and estates
•    wills and probate

Applicants should be familiar with principles commonly embodied in legislative enactments throughout the United States, such as the Statute of Frauds and statutes of limitations, although applicants are not required to recite the specific terms of any statute.   Familiarity with codifications such as the Uniform Commercial Code, the United States or Vermont Constitutions, Vermont and federal tax law, Vermont probate law and the Vermont Rules of Civil, Criminal, Family and Appellate Procedure, is helpful in answering questions on those subjects

Where is the July exam administered?: 
Is it possible to take the written portions of the exam on a laptop computer?: 

Yes, for an additonal fee

Are past exam questions and sample answers available?: 

Yes--on the Board of Bar Examiners' website

How is the exam scored?: 

There is a separate minimum passing standard of 135 for the written component (essays and performance tests) and for the MBE. An applicant who achieves a score of 130-134 on either component can still pass if the other component score exceeds 135 by 2 points for each point by which the lower score was below 135.


What was the first-time taker pass rate for the most recent July bar exam? : 

2012: 75%; 2011: 67%

What was the overall pass rate for all takers of the most recent July bar exam?: 

2012: 69%; 2011:: 68%


Can MBE scores be transferred from other jurisdictions?: 

Yes, from any of the last four prior administrations

Can applicants already admitted in another state gain admission without taking the bar exam?: 

Yes, but they must have practiced law for at least five of the previous ten years. New Hampshire and Maine attorneys may be admitted after three years of practice.

The information for Vermont comes from the Vermont Board of Bar Examiners' website and response to our survey, as well as the National Conference of Bar Examiners' Comprehensive Guide to Bar Admission Requirements.