Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam (MPRE) Exam

The Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam (MPRE) is required of all candidates seeking to practice law. It is required by 48 of the 50 states and all US territories either as a prerequisite to taking the bar exam or as a “corequisite”—meaning you can take it either before or after the bar but you have to take it at some point before you will be admitted as an attorney-at-law.

When Should I Register for the MPRE?

Most candidates choose to take the exam before the bar and some even choose to take it before they have finished law school so that when it comes time to take the bar, they can focus all of their energy on that exam.

With that said, the test is only offered three times per year, always on a Saturday. However, they do offer alternate dates for test-takers who observe the Sabbath on Saturday. So it’s worth registering far in advance to make sure you can take it during a time that is most convenient for your schedule.

MPRE registration can be done on the National Conference Bar Examiners’ (NCBE) website. You just need to complete the following steps:

  • Create an account on the NCBE website
  • Select the Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam
  • Select your preferred testing date.
  • Pay the exam fee. If you are registering during the regular registration period, this will be $95. But if you are registering during the late registration period, it will be $190.
  • Designate your preferred jurisdiction

Which Topics Will I Be Tested On?

The exam covers a wide range of the foundational principles, concepts, and processes necessary to successfully and responsibly practicing law. The 60 multiple choice questions will be divided into 12 categories, all of which are based on the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct and the ABA Model Code of Judicial Conduct:

  • Regulation of the Legal Profession – 6-12% of questions
  • The Client-Lawyer Relationship – 10-16% of the exam
  • Client Confidentiality – 6-12% of questions
  • Conflicts of Interest – 12-18% of the test
  • Competence, Legal Malpractice, and Other Civil Liability – 6-12% of exam
  • Litigation and Other Forms of Advocacy – 10-16% of questions
  • Transactions and Communications with Persons Other than Clients – 2-8% of the test
  • Different Roles of the Lawyer – 4-10% of the exam
  • Safekeeping Funds and Other Property – 2-8% of the total
  • Communications about Legal Services – 4-10% of the test
  • Lawyers’ Duties to the Legal System and to the Public – 2-4% of questions
  • Judicial Conduct – 2-8% of the total

Of the 60 questions, only 50 actually count toward your results. The other 10 are being tested for potential inclusion on future versions of the exam. You will have two hours to answer all of the questions.

What Is the Minimum Passing Score?

You will be given a scaled score ranging from 50 to 150. Most test-takers score somewhere around 100. The actual score needed to pass will differ from state to state so aim for the minimum score set for the state where you wish to practice law.

For reference to help you study, the absolute highest score required is 85. This is the requirement for 20 of the 48 states which require the exam at all. So if you want to stay on the safe side (or if you’re not yet sure which state you would like to practice in), aim for at least an 85 in order to make sure your score is accepted everywhere.

A copy of your score report will be sent to you as well as the board of bar examiners in the jurisdiction you selected during registration. If you would like it to be sent to additional jurisdiction, you can do so for a small fee per jurisdiction.

How Should I Prepare for the MPRE?

Because this is designed as a multistate exam, you do not need to worry about any state-specific rules or laws (as you do when taking the bar exam). You simply need to study those rules and principles which are applicable across all states.

Rather than just trying to study with the huge amount of reference material used to create the questions, you should make sure you have effective study aids that help you better absorb and memorize the information.

The Mometrix Study Guide, for example, provides clear, straightforward explanations of all the ABA Rules of Professional Conduct as well as the ABA Model Code of Judicial Conduct. It also includes other relevant information about generally accepted principles that are clearly defined by a set code or guideline.

If you combine the study guide with Mometrix Flashcards, you can make your study sessions even more effective. Using the proven study method included with these flashcards will help you improve your memory as well as your ability to apply your knowledge to the types of questions you will have to answer.

MPRE Study Guide

Mometrix Academy is a completely free resource provided by Mometrix Test Preparation. If you find benefit from our efforts here, check out our premium quality MPRE study guide to take your studying to the next level. Just click the MPRE study guide link below. Your purchase also helps us make even more great, free content for test-takers.

MPRE Study Guide
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by Mometrix Test Preparation | Last Updated: August 19, 2019