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How much does it cost to become a lawyer?

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2010-10-21 14:29:48
2010-10-21 14:29:48

It terms of time, it takes seven years in the United States, if you go full-time. You have to have a bachelor's degree from a four-year college, and law school takes three years if you go full-time. If you are talking about money, of course you have to pay to take the SAT, to apply to undergraduate programs, and for tuition and living expenses for four years. Then you have to pay to take the LSAT, (you may also pay to take courses to prepare you to take the LSAT, since the better you do the better the law schools that you can get into, and the more scholarship money you might get), and then three years of tuition and living expenses for law school. That can be very expensive. After that, most people take Bar review courses to prepare to take the Bar exam. You also have to pay to take the Bar exam itself, which is typically $450 - $1000. If you fail, by the way, they don't give you your money back. Finally, if you pass the Bar exam, you have to pay Bar dues to become a member of the Bar. In my state, Rhode Island, you have to join the State Supreme Court and the Rhode Island Bar Association, so I have to pay dues to both. If you become a member of the Federal Bar, which in Rhode Island requires that you take another, shorter Bar exam, you have to pay dues to the Federal Bar too. Once you are a lawyer, you have other costs, to include annual Bar dues and the cost of continuing legal education (CLE) classes, as well as malpractice insurance. You may have many other costs, depending upon what kind of law you are practicing.

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