The field of law offers an exciting career in a dynamic profession that is diverse and complicated yet very fulfilling for those with the passion for it. To become an attorney in the state of Florida, one is required to complete undergraduate education and get at least a bachelor’s degree. Although the Florida Board of Bar Examination does not require you to have a bachelor’s degree to become a member of the bar, it does require that you be a graduate from a law school that is American Bar Association-accredited. Under ABA rules, to gain admission into an ABA-approved school, one has to have a minimum education level of a bachelor’s degree.
Once you have completed your undergraduate education, you need to sit for and pass the LSAT, Law School Admission Test, to get accepted into an ABA-approved law school. There are 9 ABA-accredited law schools in Florida and the yearly tuition along with cost of living and books totals to around $30,000. There is also an LSAT fee of $160 paid to the LSAC, Law School Admission Council when you are registering. After admission into law school, you are required by the ABA to undergo instructions for 58,000 minutes which equals around 83 semester hours. The minimum number of months that one is supposed to be enrolled in law school is 24 months while the maximum is 84 months in order to earn a Juris Doctor degree. An academic year according to ABA standards should be 130 days long extended over eight months. To gain entrance to the Florida state bar, you must have a Juris Doctor degree of L.L.B (Bachelor of Laws).
You must then take the Florida State Bar exam to become a member of the Florida Bar which is the Third largest bar in the United States. A background investigation is mandatory for anyone applying to take the bar examination. The bar exam usually consists of two parts the first of which covers general and Florida laws as well as multiple-choice and essay questions while the second part covers the Multistate Bar examination which contains 200 multiple-choice questions. The following topics: Florida constitutional law, federal constitutional law, torts, criminal law, estate law, evidence, family law, contracts and property law are covered in the bar examination. After passing the bar exam, you are required to take and pass the Multistate Professional Responsibility exam which consists of multiple-choice questions which are meant to test the knowledge of the attorney on the laws and rules of professional conduct in the practice of law.
After becoming an attorney you need to complete 30 hours of MCLE, Mandatory Continuing Legal Education, in order to maintain your license. The hours are divided into the areas of ethics, substance awareness, mental illness awareness and professionalism. After receiving your legal license, you will be assigned a three-year reporting cycle and your MCLE credits must be posted online in the Bar system of the state. The journey to become an attorney is challenging but it offers excellent monetary compensation as well as an opportunity to give back to the society.