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Posts Tagged ‘Colorado bar exam’

Happy New Year…and finally another post.

January 4, 2016 Leave a comment

IMG_7277Well over a year has gone by since my last post. Since my mom’s death almost two years ago I generally lost my passion for writing on nonacademic matters. I do a lot of writing on legal topics to complement the legal education I provide as my day job, but my recreational writing has all but withered since my #1 fan died in spring 2014.

It isn’t my intent to write about anything, and it really isn’t my intent to write about nothing. Above all, writing is a form of thinking for me. My wife and kids believe my handwriting represents a novel form of hieroglyphics, so I have chosen to type my thinking. Every once in a while I think I have an idea good enough to share, and so I chose to open my writings to the universe for all to see, critique, or ignore.

I also have amazing friends and family scattered many miles from me, and so my writing is a means by which I can share current events, stuff I or we are doing that they may find interesting, and to try and bridge the miles and years that go by without face to face time.

I also think that writing helps to sort a scattered mind. I suppose that in the many months that have passed since my last post, my mind has become scattered indeed. Perhaps thinking on (virtual) paper will do me a bit of therapy as well as entertain a handful of folks.

I could also blame my writing intermission on the fact that I studied and sat for the bar exam not once, but twice in the past few years. It had been 15 years since my first bar exam (Oklahoma, which I passed on my first attempt). But nearly 15 years specializing in a highly technical legal field and wholly ignoring ALL of the topics that get tested on the bar exam, I got quite rusty.

Good stewardship – in my way of thinking – required that I be licensed to practice where I live. In my particular line of work I educate attorneys every day, helping them stay current on trends in the law. While my job doesn’t specifically require that I be licensed at all, I considered it a matter of integrity to be a licensed member of the profession I serve.

To my surprise, I also realized that I missed the practice of law. And like medicine, it’s both unethical and illegal to practice law without a license. So I rolled up my sleeves and dedicated many hours to renewed knowledge on contracts, property, torts, constitutional law, criminal law and procedure, and the other matters that get tested.

When a JD is freshly minted, knowledge of those topics is sharp. After all, the bar tests examinees on core subjects to which semesters are dedicated in law school. But the tested material is entirely academic and as I said previously, my entire professional life since 2000 has focused on a narrow niche within the law.

As the JD gets tarnished with the patina of practice – particularly in a subspecialty like mine – it takes much scrubbing of the books and refreshing of the knowledge to succeed once again on the bar exam.

In February 2014 I took the Colorado bar and did… um… not so well. And so I redoubled my efforts and sat again in February 2015. This time I passed with an excellent score, solid enough to be admitted into any of 15 states that accept the form of the bar exam used in Colorado.

I had underestimated the sense of accomplishment I would feel. I’m proud indeed to again be a member of the bar and have begun picking up occasional clients on my own terms. I still do not practice full time, but being licensed in my home state has opened new opportunities for entrepreneurial growth for me.

For those who have followed this blog in years past, I hope that I’m entering a new phase of vigor in thought and in writing. I hope to post back again here soon.