Last month, we reported that the New York Board of Law Examiners (BOLE) decided to restrict registration for the September 9-10, 2020 bar exam in order to give graduates of the fifteen New York-based law schools first priority on registration  This decision was met with a great deal of resistance, especially from the deans of out-of-state law schools, who expressed concern on behalf of the thousands of potential applicants from their schools.  We also covered this development in Episode 7 of our webcast, Remotely Ethical, which you can watch here.

Over the weekend, BOLE announced that it would be opening a second application period from June 2 through June 12, which would be open to "any candidate who graduated with a J.D. degree from an ABA-accredited law school located outside of New York, and who has not previously sat for a bar exam in any U.S. jurisdiction."  The announcement cautioned (in large bold letters), that "at this time, seating cannot be guaranteed to candidates who register during this application period" and that once the application period ends, BOLE will assess available seating and notify candidates about whether they will be able to be seated for the exam.

This announcement is in line with other moves by the courts and the Governor's office to slowly re-open parts of the state, especially in some of the less populated regions where social distancing measures are more feasible.  Although BOLE's announcement does not provide any concrete assurance to out-of-state applicants that they will be able to sit for the September bar exam, it is better than where we were a month ago and it shows that BOLE is trying to seat as many applicants as possible.  For more information about the available options in light of the issues surrounding the September bar exam, look back at our post here and our Remotely Ethical episode here.  Otherwise, stay tuned for more updates!