September 5th, our Supreme Court entered an order in response to our
proposed amendments to bar admission in Iowa (click
here for order). In that order, the Court directs that the
current process for admission of lawyers by examination should continue
to be carefully studied and requested that the Iowa Board of Law
Examiners do so with the goal of achieving greater efficiency,
expedition, economy and
utility for the applicants for admission.
The Board of
Law Examiners will, as a part of its work, also issue a recommendation
concerning the adoption of the Uniform Bar Exam and the administration of the
bar exam during the third year of law school. The Court will also review the
current Basic Skills Course in a separate proceeding.
I am very
pleased that the Court is requesting the Iowa Board of Bar Examiners to
thoroughly review all of our proposals as well as other possible modifications
to the current process. The review of the Basic Skills Course is also a
celebrate this ruling as a further opportunity to provide input on improving
the process for admission to the bar. The conversation concerning legal
education and licensure between the Court, the law schools and the bar is off
to a great start.
want to thank all of you who participated in public discourse which was the
first time the bench, bar and our law schools have discussed bar admission in a
fully-transparent manner in 150 years. I commend you all for your
passion, your wisdom and your willingness to shine a light on an enormously
important issue. Clearly, the Board of Law Examiners will be reaching out
to all of us as directed by the Court. The current board members and
their contact information can be found here.
I commend all
of you for the professionalism and civility you have brought to bear. All
points-of-view were presented to the Court in an exemplary manner. I
thank our Supreme Court for taking these matters up in such an open and
engaging process. Today we can truly be proud to be Iowa Lawyers and
members of the ISBA and officers of this Iowa Court.
again for the opportunity to serve as your President.
Joseph M. Feller
The Iowa State Bar Association
P.O. Box 37, Sibley, Iowa 51249