Statistics & Profile

NY Court of Appeals Skilled Competency Pathways

The Law School’s Certification of its Graduates for Satisfying the NYS Skills Competency Requirement for Admission

The New York Court of Appeals requires that every applicant for admission to practice (with exceptions specified in Section 520.10 or 520.5 or 520.5) shall demonstrate that the applicant possesses the skills and values necessary to provide effective, ethical and responsible legal services in this State.  Please consult the Rules of the Court of Appeals for the Admission of Attorneys and Counselors at Law, Part 520.8, available at https://www.nycourts.gov/ctapps/520rules10.htm#B18There are five possible pathways to comply with this requirement.

At Brooklyn Law School, all JD students beginning their studies after August 1, 2016 and all LLM students beginning their studies after August 1, 2018, who plan to apply for admission to the New York State Bar must submit a certification that they have achieved basic competence in the skills and values of the legal profession.  Brooklyn Law School is committed to preparing effective, ethical and responsible members of the legal profession and will certify compliance under Pathway 1 as follows:

Pathway 1:
Students will be certified under Pathway 1 as having basic lawyering competence and the ability to practice ethically if the student satisfactorily completes the requirements below.  Satisfactory completion is achieving a grade of C or higher in a graded course or a Pass in a course graded on a Pass/Fail basis.

  • The Law School’s orientation program for entering students which introduces students to the legal profession and values necessary for ethical practice and the skills required to be an effective attorney.
  • The following classes:
    • At least four-credits in a course or courses during the first year of law school that teach fundamentals of legal research, legal writing and lawyering skills including negotiation and oral argument.
    • Six additional credits in experiential courses of which at least one course must be a clinic or externship that will expose students to oral and written communication, problem solving, fact investigation, research and writing and case theory/planning.
    • A professional responsibility course.
  • Opportunities and encouragement to engage in pro bono service in excess of the 50 hours required which exposes students to oral and written communication, problem solving, fact investigation, research and writing and case theory/planning.

Pathway 3:
Any student who satisfactorily completes the NYS Pro Bono Scholars Program is eligible for certification under Pathway 3.

Pathways 4 and 5:
LLM students should consider completing the requirements of either of these Pathways which do not necessitate certification by the Law School.  The Law School will certify any LLM student who completes the requirements of Pathway 1.

For additional information, please consult the NY Court of Appeals website:
Frequently Asked Questions, January 2018, available at http://www.nycourts.gov/ctapps/news/skills.pdf