New Mexico Bar Exam

New Mexico Bar Exam Format

New Mexico uses the Uniform Bar Exam (“UBE”) format but is not a UBE state. The bar exam takes two days and consists of the Multistate Performance Tests (“MPT”)Multistate Essay Exam (“MEE”), and the Multistate Bar Exam (“MBE”).

MPT (Performance Test)
New Mexico tests two (2) MPT performance tests.

New Mexico Essays

Colorado tests six (6) essays. Subjects include:

  • Business Associations (Agency and Partnership; Corporations and LLCs)
  • Civil Procedure (Federal)
  • Conflict of Laws
  • Constitutional Law
  • Contracts (Common Law, Sales/UCC Art. 2)
  • Criminal Law
  • Criminal Procedure
  • Evidence
  • Family Law
  • Negotiable Instruments/Commercial Paper (UCC Art. 3)
  • Real Property
  • Secured Transactions (UCC Art. 9)
  • Torts
  • Trusts and Estates (Decedents’ Estates, Trusts, Future Interests)

MBE (Multiple Choice)
New Mexico uses the standard MBE. Subjects include:

  • Civil Procedure
  • Constitutional Law
  • Contracts (Common Law, Sales/UCC Art. 2)
  • Criminal Law
  • Criminal Procedure
  • Evidence
  • Real Property
  • Torts

MBE Score Transfer
New Mexico accepts MBE scores transferred from other jurisdictions for concurrent exams only. New Mexico does not accept UBE scores.

New Mexico Bar Exam Testing Schedule

Day 1
Morning – 6 Essays (3 hours)
Afternoon – 2 MPTs (3 hours)

Day 2
Morning – MBE Part I (100 questions; 3 hours)
Afternoon – MBE Part II (100 questions; 3 hours)

New Mexico Bar Exam Dates and Application

The New Mexico bar exam is held on the last Tuesday and Wednesday of February and July each year in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Applications can be found on the New Mexico Board of Bar Examiners’ Website.

Exam Date Receipt Date Late Deadline
Late Deadline
Late Deadline
Late Deadline
February 21-22, 2017 Sep. 10 Oct. 10 Nov. 9 Dec. 10 Jan. 6
July 25-26, 2017 Jan. 10 Feb. 10 March 12 April 11 June 5


Grading Procedure

New Mexico has adopted a “holistic” grading procedure for the MPTs and MEE on a scale of 1-6. Holistic grading assigns a score to an answer based on global impression of the answers’ quality.

Passing Score
The minimum passing score for the New Mexico bar exam is a combined average scaled score of 130 on the MBE and essay parts of the bar exam. Exam results are normally released in mid-April for the February exam and mid-September for the July exam.

Pass Rates
Pass rates are available here.

Review and Appeal for Applicants Failing the New Mexico Bar Exam
Before the bar results are published, the Board will review and regrade as necessary the written any answers for an applicant with a bar exam score within three points below the passing score.

Unsuccessful applicants are entitled to their bar exam scores between 30 and 60 days after notice of the bar exam results. Unsuccessful applicants are also entitled to a reasonable inspection of the essay questions, the applicant’s answers, and sample answers for each question. Applicants cannot inspect the MBE or MPT unless authorized by the NCBE.

Unsuccessful applicants who failed the bar exam but are otherwise eligible for admission may, upon written request and within 30 days of notice of the bar exam results, cause the Board to review the applicant’s grading to determine the mathematical accuracy of the scoring of the applicant’s exam. However, there is no right of hearing or appeal with regard to the grade that an applicant received for answers to the exam questions.

Retaking the New Mexico Bar Exam

Repeat examiners pay a reduced application fee. If the applicant’s investigation report is dated more than 15 months prior to the application date, the applicant must pay an additional fee for that report.