South Carolina Bar Exam Format
The South Carolina bar exam takes three days and consists South Carolina Essays and the Multistate Bar Exam (“MBE”). South Carolina law is tested on the South Carolina bar exam.
South Carolina Essays
The South Carolina Board of Law Examiners develops its own essays and tests the essays in six sections. Each section lasts two hours and contains three or four questions. Subjects may include:
- Bank Deposits and Collections (UCC Art. 4)
- Business Organizations (Corporations, Agency and Partnership)
- Contracts (UCC Art. 2)
- Civil Procedure (South Carolina and Federal)
- Family Law (Domestic Relations)
- Legal Writing and Research
- Negotiable Instruments/Commercial Paper (UCC Art. 3)
- Secured Transactions (UCC Art. 9)
- Trusts and Estates
*Applicants should be familiar with the principles of law that prevail in South Carolina and any aspects of the law that are peculiar to South Carolina.
MBE (Multiple Choice)
South Carolina uses the standard MBE. The MBE is the seventh section of the bar exam.
MBE Score Transfer
South Carolina does not accept MBE scores from other jurisdictions.
South Carolina Bar Exam Testing Schedule
Morning – Essays
Afternoon – Essays
Morning – Essays
Afternoon – Essays
Morning – MBE Part I (100 questions; 3 hours)
Afternoon – MBE Part II (100 questions; 3 hours)
South Carolina Bar Exam Dates and Application
The South Carolina bar exam is administered twice each year on the last consecutive Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday of February and July. Applications can be found on the South Carolina Supreme Court Website.
|Exam Date||Application Deadline
|February 25-27, 2013||Dec. 1 – Jan. 10||Jan. 11 – Jan. 31|
|July 29-31, 2013||Aug. 1 – Aug. 31||Sep. 1 – Sep. 31|
South Carolina Bar Exam Weight
Each section of the South Carolina bar exam is weighted equally.
Applicants must score 70 out of 100 to pass an essay section. The MBE counts as one section. Applicants must achieve a scaled score of 125 or greater to pass the MBE, and applicants scoring lower than 110 on the MBE fail the entire South Carolina Bar Exam. Applicants must pass six out of the seven sections in order to pass the bar exam.
South Carolina Bar Exam Pass Rates
Bar exam statistics can be found here.
Review for Applicants Failing the South Carolina Bar Exam
Applicants are not allowed to access their answers. The results reported by the Board of Law Examiners are final, and there is no re-grading or any other type of review for the written portion of the exam.
Applicants may request their MBE be hand graded. The request must be filed with the Clerk of the South Carolina Supreme Court with the $10 fee within 15 days of the date of the letter notifying the applicant of the bar exam results.
Retaking the South Carolina Bar Exam
Applicants failing the bar exam three times or four times are not eligible to sit for the bar exam for at least one year following the administration of the last failed exam. Applicants failing the bar exam five or more times are not eligible to sit for the bar exam for at least two years following the administration of the last failed bar exam.
Applicants failing the bar exam three or more times are also required to complete a course of study before being eligible to retake the bar exam. A new course of study must be completed after each subsequent failure. The required course includes one of the following:
(1) At least 12 semester hours (or equivalent) of classes at a law school approved or provisionally approved by the ABA. The courses must be related to the subjects that are tested on the bar exam. The applicant has to complete all course requirements of regular law students, which includes a passing grade. The supplemental bar exam application will include certification from the law school that the applicant has completed the required number of hours, or if the course of study has not been completed at the time the supplemental application is filed, that the applicant is currently enrolled in courses that will give the applicant sufficient hours before the exam. The law school must provide certification that the required hours have been completed before the applicant will be re-examined.
(2) Study under the direct supervision of an attorney for at least 20 hours per week for at least six months immediately preceding the exam. The supervising attorney must be an active member of the South Carolina Bar who has been admitted to practice for at least five years and is engaged in the active practice of law in South Carolina. The supervising attorney must submit the proposed course of study to the Board of Law Examiners that specifies the topics to be covered, the books and materials to be used, and the dates and locations of study. For the July bar exam, the proposed course of study must be submitted by December 15. For the February bar exam, the proposed course of study must be submitted by July 15. The Board of Law Examiners may approve, disapprove, or modify the proposed course of study to include increasing the number of hours required. The supplemental application is required to include certification from the supervising attorney that the applicant is current on the approved course of study. The supervising lawyer must also provide certification that the applicant has completed the course of study before the applicant will be re-examined.