State-by-State Bar Exam Information: Maryland

Bar Information


Key Dates

When is the Bar Exam: 

The last Tue and Wed of February and July

When is the application for the July exam made available: 

The application is updated only when changes occur and is available continuously throughout the year.

By when is the application for the July exam due?: 

January 16th; with late fee: May 20th

Exam Details

What tests and types of questions are on the bar exam?: 

Written: 10 essay questions prepared by the Maryland Board of Law Examiners and one performance test from the Multistate Performance Test

Multiple-choice: The Multistate Bar Exam

**Maryland does not require the MPRE (ethics exam)

What subjects are tested: 

Maryland essays: Agency, Business Associations, Commercial Transactions, Constitutional Law, Contracts, Criminal Law and Procedure, Evidence, Family Law, Maryland Civil Procedure, Professional Conduct, Property, Torts

Where is the July exam administered?: 
Is it possible to take the written portions of the exam on a laptop computer?: 


Are past exam questions and sample answers available?: 

Yes. Available here.

How is the exam scored?: 

The written portions (essays, 58%, and one performance test, 8.7%, combined) are worth 2/3rds of the total score, and the MBE is worth 1/3rd. There is a detailed explanation of scoring available on the Maryland Board of Law Examiners' website here.


What was the first-time taker pass rate for the most recent July bar exam? : 

2012: 81%; 2011: 82%

What was the overall pass rate for all takers of the most recent July bar exam?: 

2012: 76%; 2011: 77%


Can MBE scores be transferred from other jurisdictions?: 

Yes, but concurrent examination only

Can applicants already admitted in another state gain admission without taking the bar exam?: 

Yes, but they have to take an attorneys' exam, which includes testing on Maryland-specific law but does not include the MBE.



Maryland does not require the MPRE, but 47 other states do. For law students planning on sitting for the bar in Maryland, deciding whether to take the MPRE depends on how long your MPRE score will be valid in the eyes of another jurisdiction to which you might seek admission some years down the road. Consult the other jurisdictions directly or the National Conference of Bar Examiners (

The information for Maryland was obtained from the Maryland Board of Law Examiners' website and response to our survey, as well as the National Conference of Bar Examiners' Comprehensive Guide to Bar Admission Requirements.