The Ohio Bar Examination is being delayed until October 5-6 when the test will be administered online, the Ohio Supreme Court announced Tuesday.
The court is making the allowance for the exam to be done remotely by computer for the first time because of the ongoing coronavirus crisis.
“The safety of the exam takers and the staff who administer the exam is our top priority, and that’s why the court felt compelled to make this change,” Ohio Supreme Court Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor said.
Originally, the bar exam was scheduled for July 28-29 but the court in May, citing the COVID-19 crisis, decided to postpone administration of the test to Sept. 9-10.
Now the court is allowing the test to be taken online.
The high court in May also took the unusual step of allowing recent law school graduates to obtain a temporary license to practice law in Ohio until the applicant got their results from the September bar examination.
O’Connor said the court recognized the need for law school graduates to start work and the significant economic hardship that the bar exam delay would impose.
The temporary license has been now extended until the applicant receives the results from the Oct. 5-6 test.
Those with temporary licenses can: enter appearances, draft legal documents and pleadings, provide legal services to clients and provide other counsel consistent with the practice of law in Ohio. Those with a temporary license have to be supervised by a person with a law license.
The court also is allowing a temporary license holder who is practicing law the option of taking the bar examination in February 2021 and extending their temporary license privilege until results are received then.
For those who pass the bar exam in October, the planned date for the next swearing-in ceremony for new attorneys is tentatively scheduled for Dec. 14.
Further details about the Ohio Bar Examination can be found on the Ohio Supreme Court’s website, http://www.sconet.state.oh.us/