The Catholic University of America
Bar Exam Preparation: Character & Fitness Evaluation

Office of Academic Affairs | Bar Exam Preparation

 

Every jurisdiction conducts a Character and Fitness Evaluation of every applicant. In most jurisdictions, students will complete a lengthy Character and Fitness questionnaire as part of the application process. (New York requires the information, but at a later step in the process.) The questionnaire will request information about where you have lived (specific addresses), where you have gone to school, where you have worked, names of work supervisors, any prior school disciplinary issues or criminal charges, any credit issues and serious health issues. These questionnaires take a substantial amount of time to complete. Please be sure to obtain the forms early in your last year of school and allow sufficient time to obtain the information and complete the form in plenty of time to meet the applicable deadline.

Every state defines “character” and “fitness” to practice law slightly differently, but all are focused on reviewing your background and assessing your candor in the application. It is essential that you provide the Examiners with full disclosure of any prior criminal or disciplinary charges. Part of the assessment of candor includes confirmation that any such disclosures have also been made to the law school. This is why we remind you of your continuing obligation to notify the school of any criminal or disciplinary issues before you apply to law school and following admission to law school. Each student is asked to confirm that full disclosure has been made upon matriculation to school (LINK: Confirmation of Full Disclosure Form.) Any questions regarding this obligation and disclosure of any new matters should be addressed to Dean Crowley.

We will create a written confirmation of matters disclosed by the student and provide a copy to the student in exactly the form that we will report the information to the Bar Examiners. This will assist you as you prepare your Bar Application. Please advise us promptly if there are any edits or additions necessary to that confirmation memo.