Which states will allow you to take the bar and practice law with out a degree in JP?

As far as I am aware, seven states in the U.S. allow reading for the law without law school as follows:



New York;





Although this article focuses of California, a few of the above states have basic educational requirements prior to admission into the Bar. In California, this is known as the Law Office Study Program.


"Applicants who obtain legal education by . . . law office study must have four years of law study and take an examination after their firstyear. Applicants who pass the examination within three consecutive administrations of first becoming eligible to take it will receive credit for all law study completed to the date of the examination passed."


"Applicants may have . . . completed 2/3 of graduationrequirements from an ABA-accredited law school and within 12 months after successful completion pursued the study of law in the law office of an attorney in active practice of law in Maine on a full-time basis for at least one year . . . ."

New York:

"Law office study permitted after successful completion of one year at an ABA-approved law school."


"Four-year law office study program; must have completed three-fourths of work accepted for a bachelor's degree in a college approved by the Court before commencing the study of law"


"Law office study permitted as a structured course comparable to 2 years at an ABA-approved law school Prior approval of independent study required."

No special requirements are needed to become an attorney without law school in Virginia or Washington as far as I could determine.

All of the above information came from the "Comprehensive Guide to Bar Admission Requirements 2004," published by the National Conference of Bar Examiners and American Bar Association Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar