How To Ask Your Law Firm To Pay For Bar Exam Preparation
How To Ask Your Law Firm To Pay For Bar Exam Preparation: Bar exam preparation is expensive! Not only do you have a course to pay for, you will also have to get living expenses covered if you are taking time off work, and you may also have several additional costs (the costs of a hotel if you need to travel, filing fees, exam software fees, costs to be “cleared” by character and fitness, etc.) You can read more about bar exam costs here if you want to make sure you have your bases covered!
How To Ask Your Law Firm To Pay For Bar Exam Preparation
Here, we discuss one option for bar exam preparation funding: your future law firm.
If you have a job lined up at a law firm, do not be afraid to ask if they are willing to contribute to your bar exam preparation. Many big law firms will pay for 100% of bar exam preparation. However, even some small firms may agree to pay for some or all of your bar prep. We have had both first-time takers and repeat takers convince their firms to pay for some or all of their bar exam preparation. If you are wondering if it is appropriate to ask your firm to pay for bar prep, check out this post on if you should ask for your firm to pay for bar prep.
Am Law 200 firms have sent classes full of associates and pay for our premier bar prep course, which is $5,500. But we have also had small firms agree to pay for the same premier course! Even some students who have already chosen a bar review course will ask their firms to pay for a supplementary course (like our MEE essay course or our Michigan essay course) or a seminar (like our Multistate Essay Exam seminar, or Michigan bar exam seminar) or book (e.g. our MBE one-sheets, our MBE Guide, our MEE one-sheets, or our How to Pass the Michigan Bar Exam book).
Your law firm is invested in your success. They are depending on you to pass the bar exam, so you can become a valuable associate. Some firms (especially big law firms) will often be embarrassed if associates fail so they go the extra mile to ensure their associates pass. Thus, if you are taking bar exam preparation seriously, they will also want to help you in any way they can.
How To Ask Your Firm To Pay For Bar Exam Preparation
The best way to ask your firm to pay for bar exam preparation is as follows.
1. Determine what you need to pass the bar exam.
We have had students who work at small firms convince firms to pay for our $5,500 Uniform Bar Exam full-service course or Michigan Bar Exam full-service course without any questions asked! But we have also had students convince their firms to pay for an essay course (about $2,200) or seminar ($500) or book ($70-$200) as a supplement to their commercial course.
So, figure out what you need first. Are you looking for your firm to cover an entire course? Or are you looking for them to cover a smaller supplementary course, seminar, or book?
2. Next, write a description of how the program will help you pass the bar exam.
When you do this, you should do two things:
- First, describe a weakness or worry that you have, if possible (multiple-choice exams, writing essays, memorization). If you do not want to describe a weakness of yourself, describe one of the weaknesses of your course. Say something like, “I think this essay course will really help me as it provides weekly essay grading, which my commercial course does not.” Either way, you should identify a need. If you are a repeat-taker, say exactly what went wrong the first time and how you think the new program will help you.
- Second, describe the program in depth. This shows the firm that you have truly thought about the program a lot. Note: If you wish to sign up for one of our resources, we are happy to provide a detailed description for you.
- “I have always struggled with multiple-choice, so this MBE course would be a great option to help me master some of the relevant material and learn essential multiple-choice strategies to help maximize my chances of passing the first time. Specifically, the MBE course meets for 28 hours. It comes with outlines for all of the MBE subjects. It comes with real MBE questions, which my commercial course does not provide. It also comes with a diagnostic….” (Then describe the material in depth.)
- “I struggle with memorization and there is a lot to learn during bar prep. While I am still going to do my best to memorize all of my outlines, I am making it my goal to focus on the highly tested topics. These MEE one-sheets have received great reviews and tend to cover several of the topics that are tested on an actual multistate essay exam. The Multistate Essay Exam seminar is also notorious for accurately prediction subjects that are likely to come up. I am planning on using these resources in conjunction with my commercial bar prep course to maximize my essay score.” (Then describe the services in depth.)
- “I need extra help writing essays. My bar review course only grades two essays. I am hoping to have several more essays graded per week. This MEE essay course comes with several essays graded, including a final exam. JD Advising grades 3 essays per week and also composes a final exam with topics that are likely to come up. This course also comes with MEE one-sheets, which go over the highly tested topics….”
3. Offer to see if the course will invoice the firm directly.
The firm will be able to write off expenses if they pay for bar exam preparation. Thus, many firms preferred to be invoiced directly with a precise list of what is being offered to the student as well as a W-9 from the bar exam preparation company. We have provided this to several firms and imagine that the other commercial courses out there would also be happy to do this!
Certainly, not all firms pay for bar exam preparation. However, the takeaway from this post is: If you have a job lined up at a law firm, do not be afraid to ask if they will pay for some or all of bar exam preparation. Their answer may just surprise you.
[display-posts include_content=”true” id=”24548″]