What is Bar Reciprocity?

If you’ve passed the bar exam in one state but want to work in another, you can take the bar exam in multiple states or research the laws regarding reciprocity in your state . Each state establishes their own criteria for admission to the bar, and many states have reciprocal agreements. If you want to work in a state that has a reciprocal agreement with the state where you’ve taken and passed the bar, you can do so without needing to retake the bar.

Alabama Reciprocity

This state doesn’t offer reciprocity.

Alaska Reciprocity

Alaska has reciprocity agreements with the following other states: CO, CT, DC, GA, IL, IN, IA, KY, MA, MI, MN, MO, NE, NH, NY, ND, OH, OK, PA, TN, TX, UT, VT, VA, WA, WV, and WY.

Arizona Reciprocity

This state doesn’t offer reciprocity.

Arkansas Reciprocity

Admission by motion has been in effect since October 2004. Admission by motion is provided to applicants who are admitted to the bar in at least one other state, possess a law degree, and have been practicing law for at least 5 years in the state in which they are admitted as an attorney.

California Reciprocity

California doesn’t offer reciprocity but offers a shorter bar exam for attorneys who are admitted in other states and who have been in good standing as an attorney in those states for at least four years prior to their application.

Colorado Reciprocity

Applicants must be coming from a state or territory that has a reciprocity agreement in place with Colorado. Those states and territories include the following: AL, AK, AZ, AR, CT, DC, GA, ID, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, ME, MA, MI, MN, MS, MO, MT, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NY, NC, ND, OH, OK, OR, PA, SD, TN, TX, UT, VT, VA, USVI, WA, WV, WI, and WY.

Connecticut Reciprocity

Connecticut will provisionally admit lawyers from other states who reciprocate for Connecticut lawyers. Those states and territories include the following: AL, AK, AR, CO, DC, GA, IL, IN, IA, KS, ME, MA, MI, MN, MS, MO, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NY, NC, ND, OH, OK, OR, PA, SD, TN, TX, UT, VT, USVI, VA, WA, WV, WI, and WY.

Delaware Reciprocity

This state doesn’t offer reciprocity.

Florida Reciprocity

This state doesn’t offer reciprocity.

Georgia Reciprocity

Like California, Georgia offers a shorter bar exams for lawyers who are already admitted by exam and who have been in good standing in another state for at least a year before taking the Georgia attorney’s exam. Admission without examination is available for lawyers from reciprocal states who have practiced for at least five years.

Hawaii Reciprocity

This state doesn’t offer reciprocity.

Idaho Reciprocity

Idaho offers reciprocity only to certain lawyers licensed in Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming. However, lawyers who have actively practiced law for at least five of the last seven years immediately preceding their applications for admission do not have to take and pass the Multistate Bar Examination (MBE). Those lawyersmust still take and pass the remainder of the Idaho bar examination.

Illinois Reciprocity

Illinois has reciprocity agreements with AK, CO, CT, DC, GA, GU, IN, IA, KY, MA, MI, MN, MO, NE, NH, NMI, NY, NC, ND, OH, OK, PA, TN, TX, USVI, UT, VT, VA, WA, WV, WI, and WY.

Indiana Reciprocity

This state lacks formal reciprocity. However, they will provisionally admit lawyers who have practiced law five out of the last seven years in another state before their application for admission without taking and passing the Indiana bar.

Iowa Reciprocity

If you have practiced law for a full five out of the last seven years preceding application for admission to practice law in Iowa, you can be admitted to practice without needing to take or pass the Iowa bar exam.

Kansas Reciprocity

This state doesn’t offer reciprocity.

Kentucky Reciprocity

Kentucky has reciprocity agreements with AK, CO, CT, DC, GA, IL, IA, MA, MI, MN, MO, NE, NH, NY, NC, ND, OH, OK, PA, TN, TX, UT, WA, WV, WI, and WY.

Louisiana Reciprocity

There are no formal reciprocity agreements, but the state will provisionally admit certain lawyers under special criteria.

Maine Reciprocity

In 2005, Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont entered reciprocity agreements that allow attorneys to be admitted to each other’s bars without taking the exam for that state. A shorter exam is offered for lawyers in good standing in another state for at least three of the last five years prior to admission. Shorter bar exams are dependent on the passing score on MBE within 61 months of the current administration of the Maine bar exam.

Maryland Reciprocity

Maryland has no formal reciprocity agreements but offers a shorter bar exam for lawyers who are in good standing in another state for at least five of the past 10 years before applying for admission in Maryland.

Massachusetts Reciprocity

To be admitted in Massachusetts, you must have been admitted to practice in another state for at least five years before your application and be in good standing with the previous state. You must be a graduate of a law school that at the time of graduation was approved by the American Bar Association (ABA) or authorized by state statute to grant the bachelor of laws degree or juris doctor.

Michigan Reciprocity

If you’ve practiced law for three of the last five years prior to applying for admission in Michigan, you can be admitted to practice without needing to take and pass the Michigan bar exam.

Minnesota Reciprocity

If you’ve practiced law for five of the last seven years immediately prior to applying for admission in Minnesota, you can be admitted to practice without needing to take and pass the Minnesota bar exam.

Other lawyers can be admitted based on a minimum passing score on the MBE if they apply within two years of passing the test in another jurisdiction.

Mississippi Reciprocity

Mississippi has a very limited reciprocity admission rule with states who will offer similar reciprocity to Mississippi lawyers. Lawyers from other states who have practiced at least five years may be admitted after taking and passing an attorney’s examination.

Missouri Reciprocity

You must be coming from a state that has a reciprocity agreement in place with Missouri.

Montana Reciprocity

This state doesn’t offer reciprocity.

Nebraska Reciprocity

Lawyers who graduated from an ABA accredited law school and passed a bar exam comparable to Nebraska’s, including the MPRE, can be admitted without an examination. Lawyers who have graduated from an ABA accredited school and have actively and substantially practiced law for five of the last seven years can be admitted without having to take and pass the written bar exam.

Nevada Reciprocity

This state doesn’t offer reciprocity.

New Hampshire Reciprocity

In 2005, Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont entered reciprocity agreements that allow attorneys to be admitted to each other’s bars without taking the exam for that state.

New Jersey Reciprocity

This state doesn’t offer reciprocity.

New Mexico Reciprocity

This state doesn’t offer reciprocity.

New York Reciprocity

New York has reciprocity agreements with AK, CO, DC, GA, IL, IN, IA, KY, MA, MI, MN, MO, NE, NH, NC, ND, OH, OK, PA, TN, TX, UT, VA, WA, WV, WI, and WY.

North Carolina Reciprocity

North Carolina has reciprocity agreements with AK, CO, CT, DC, GA, IL, IN, IA, KY, MA, MI, MN, MO, NE, NH, NY, ND, OH, OK, PA, TN, TX, UT, VT, WA, WV, WI, and WY.

North Dakota Reciprocity

This state doesn’t offer reciprocity.

Ohio Reciprocity

Ohio doesn’t have formal reciprocity agreements with other states. It will, however, provisionally admit applicants who’ve taken and passed a bar and have been admitted in the highest court of another state, or in the District of Columbia. They must have practiced law for at least a full five years of the 10 years prior to the date of application. These applicants must demonstrate they intend to actively practice law in Ohio on a continuing basis.

Oklahoma Reciprocity

Oklahoma has formal reciprocity agreements with AK, CO, CT, DC, GA, IL, IN, IA, KY, MA, MI, MN, MO, NE, NH, NY, NC, ND, OH, PA, TN, TX, UT, VT, VA, WA, WV, WI, and WY.

Oregon Reciprocity

Oregon has formal reciprocity agreements with AL, AK, AZ, AR, CO, CT, DC, GA, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, MA, MI, MN, MO, MS, NE, NH, NY, NC, ND, OH, OK, PA, SD, TN, TX, UT, VT, VA, WA, WV, WI, and WY.

Pennsylvania Reciprocity

This state has reciprocity with AK, CO, CT, DC, GA, IL, IN, IA, KY, MA, MI, MN, MO, NE, NH, NY, NC, ND, OH, OK, TN, TX, UT, VT, VA, WA, WV, WI, and WY.

Rhode Island Reciprocity

Rhode Island will provisionally admit anyone who has practiced or taught law in the United States for at least five out the last ten years prior the date of application for admission to Rhode Island. Applicants must stake and pass the essay portion of the Rhode Island bar exam.

South Carolina

This state doesn’t have formal reciprocity agreements with any state.

South Dakota Reciprocity

In South Dakota, the reciprocity agreement went into effect in 2004. Applicants are required to show five years prior practice in prescribed areas.

Tennessee Reciprocity

If you meet the educational requirements for the Tennessee bar exam and have actively engaged in practicing law for at least five years prior to your application for admission in Tennessee, the state will provisionally admit you.

Texas Reciprocity

Texas has limited admission for certain lawyers to be admitted without examination and after passage of the full student examination.

Utah Reciprocity

Utah has reciprocity agreements with AK, CO, CT, DC, GA, ID, IL, IN, IA, KY, MA, MI, MN, MO, NE, NH, NY, NC, ND, OH, OK, PA, TN, TX, VT, VA, WA, and WY.

Vermont Reciprocity

In 2005, Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont entered reciprocity agreements that allow attorneys to be admitted to each other’s bars without taking the exam for that state. Otherwise, those who have practiced in other jurisdictions must have practiced actively for five of the last 10 years in one or more jurisdictions in the US, without being under suspension or revocation in any other jurisdiction. If they meet those requirements, they can be admitted by motion without examination.

Virginia Reciprocity

Virginia will provisionally admit lawyers from other states who reciprocate for Virginia lawyers.

Washington Reciprocity

Washington has reciprocity with AK, CO, CT, DC, GA, ID, IL, IN, IA, KY, MA, MI, MN, MO, NE, NH, NY, NC, ND, OH, OK, OR, PA, TN, TX, UT, VT, VA, WV, WI, and WY.

Washington D.C. Reciprocity

If you’ve been admitted for five years in another jurisdiction immediately prior to your application, you can be admitted without taking the bar. You may also be admitted without taking the bar if you graduated from an ABA accredited law school and obtained certain minimum scores on the MBE and the MPRE.

West Virginia Reciprocity

West Virginia has reciprocity with CO, CT, DC, IL, IN, IA, KY, MA, MI, MN, MO, NE, NY, NC, ND, OK, PA, TX, VT, VA, WA, and WI.

Wisconsin Reciprocity

Wisconsin will provisionally admit lawyers from other states who reciprocate for Wisconsin lawyers.

Wyoming Reciprocity

Wyoming will provisionally admit lawyers from other states who reciprocate for Wyoming lawyers.