New York Bar Skills Competency Requirement

For JD students who entered law school after August 1, 2016, the New York bar has implemented a Skills Competency Requirement. The College of Law follows Pathway 2 to satisfy the Skills Competency Requirement.  Pathway 2 requires students to have at least 15 credit hours of practice-based experiential learning while in law school. This requirement may be satisfied through a combination of specific law school courses and summer employment experience.

Practice-Based Experiential Learning Courses

The practice-based experiential learning courses that satisfy Pathway 2 for admission follow:

  • Advanced Decision Analysis Workshop
  • Advanced Legal Drafting
  • Advanced Legal Research
  • Advanced Health Care Law
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution
  • Child Protection Advocacy
  • Client Counseling (short course and semester course)
  • Criminal Defense: Investigation and Discovery
  • Corporate Transactions
  • Deposition Skills
  • Domestic Violence and Civil Protection Order Clinic
  • Entrepreneurship and Community Development Clinic
  • Indigent Defense Clinic
  • Judicial Externship
  • Lawyering II:  Advocacy
  • Legal Drafting
  • Legal Externship
  • Mediation
  • Negotiations
  • Ohio Innocence Project
  • Patent and Trademark Clinic
  • Practical Applications: Expert Witness at Trial
  • Public Interest Honors Externship
  • Pretrial Litigation
  • Sixth Circuit Clinic
  • Trial Practice
  • Trial Practice:  Competition
  • Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot Team
  • Witness Preparation

Summer Employment Experience

Under Pathway 2, six of these 15 required credits maybe conveyed through summer employment experience at a rate of 50 hours per credit. This amounts to 300 hours, which is 7.5 weeks of full-time (40 hours/week) work. Summer employment that qualifies for certification of the New York Skills Competency Requirement will meet all of the following criteria:

  • The student will be supervised by an attorney in good standing in any state or territory of the United States or the District of Columbia.
  • The supervising attorney must certify to the law school the beginning and ending dates of the employment, that the student satisfactorily completed the employment, and that the work experience:
    • Provided the student with an initial orientation session;
    • Implemented a system for assignments that assured that the student was actually engaged in the performance of legal work, including a diversity of tasks, as part of the ongoing practical work of the law office during normal business hours and throughout the required period;
    • Provided the student with experience and guidance in the skills and values required for basic competence and ethical participation in the legal profession;
    • Gave the student timely oral and written feedback;
    • Engaged the student in reflection on his/her experiences and learning during the employment.

To document non-credit bearing summer employment to satisfy part of the Skills Competency Requirement, your employer must complete the Supervisor certification required if applicants are seeking credit for non-credit bearing summer employment.

Pro Bono Requirement

Applicants to the NY Bar have a mandatory 50-hour pro bono requirement.  The 50 hours of pro bono service must be completed between the time a person enters law school and the time they are sworn-in to the NY Bar.  This requirement may be fulfilled by pro bono work during the academic year or during summer employment. A list of qualifying pro bono work, including clinics, externships and summer employment (internships), is provided on the NY pro bono FAQ at questions 11 and 12.

For pro bono service opportunities during the academic year, please contact the Jim Tomaszewski in the Center for Professional Development.

To document summer pro bono work, your employer must complete the Form Affidavit for the Pro Bono Requirement before the conclusion of your internship.