Amid Omicron Surge, States Consider Alternatives to February Bar Exam

As we noted last week, Nevada became the first state to officially move the bar exam to an online format for the February Bar Exam, citing the spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19. Now other states are trying to determine the best course of action for their exams as well.

One of the increasingly popular options appears to be to delay February’s tests for a month if the Omicron variant continues its spreads in the U.S.

Another choice is to hold an exam in February as planned but allow exam takers the option to wait and then take the test at the end of March.

“Testing materials will be available for makeup dates in late March,” the National Conference of Bar Examiners has now announced.

States that stick with their February test dates will not have the option of conducting their tests remotely because of deadlines set by the Conference of Bar Examiner’s software vendor, ExamSoft.

Interestingly, Nevada does not use the ExamSoft software, allowing it the flexibility of having the remote exam once again.

The State of California has now announced that its February test may be delayed and other options may be available for test takers who do not want to sit near others indoors.

“We are exploring all of our options,” said Donna Hershkowitz, Chief of Programs for the California State Bar, said in a statement. “A public health order is required, along with a decision from the California Supreme Court, to change the exam modality.”

If applicants wish to withdraw from the exam, the State Bar will provide a full refund, Hershkowitz said. Normally, the State Bar offers only partial refunds, or none to those who bow out “this late in the process,” she said.

You can read more about this ongoing situation here and of course we will continue to keep you updated.

If you are studying for the upcoming February Bar Exam and are having concerns about how your studying is going, we can certainly provide assistance to get you on track to pass before it’s too late. You can learn more about our famed bar exam tutoring program here.