Changing Jurisdictions
July 16, 2004 9:26 AM   Subscribe

for the lawyers:

i'm three years from admission on motion in NY (which bar membership has been recommended to me by several folks for various reasons). i may or may not be moving back to WashDC in two years (reciprocity with DC and admisson on motion to VA are not at issue). should i sit for the NY bar or wait out the reciprocity?

what advice for/experiences with changing jurisdictions do/have y'all had?
posted by crush-onastick to Law & Government (2 answers total)
I'm admitted to NY but not practicing there. In comparison to California, where I practice, I've found the NY bar to be less user-friendly. The admissions process was much more bureaucratic and distinctly more inconvenient. (For a handful of different reasons not relating to my admissibility as an attorney, I sat for and passed the bar in February of 1998, and was finally admitted in October of 2000.) If you really need to be admitted to NY, then do it, but if it's just a "it might come in handy someday" kind of thing, it's not clear to me that the benefits outweigh the hassle.

(I sat for both CA and NY, being fresh out of law school and there being no reciprocity between the two. I went to law school in CA, and sat for the CA bar because even though my then-husband was in NY, I wanted to keep the door open to coming back to CA, so I did both back-to-back, and wound up returning to CA for good before being fully admitted in NY. My current firm doesn't particularly care that I'm admitted in NY, and only covers my CA bar dues, which means that I'm out of pocket $350 every two years to keep up a membership that I will likely never use, but can't afford to allow to lapse either. Unlike CA, New York has no mechanism for an "inactive" status- so until I'm willing to certify to New York that I am retired from the practice of law, I'm on the hook. I offer this up to explain my grumpy attitude to the NY bar. As always, YMMV.)
posted by ambrosia at 10:47 AM on July 16, 2004

*imagines ambrosia billing the 6 minutes it took to write that post as "research"*
posted by falconred at 11:17 AM on July 16, 2004

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