On Thursday, the New Jersey Supreme Court announced that it has come to a decision about what to do about three important topics that it has been wrestling with: the Uniform Bar Examination, admission by motion, and metadata in electronic documents. 


Uniform Bar Examination (UBE) 

“Following the recommendation of the Ad Hoc Committee on the Uniform Bar Examination, the Court has determined to adopt the UBE as a replacement for New Jersey’s existing bar examination format, beginning with the February 2017 administration of the exam.  New Jersey joins 21 jurisdictions that have already adopted the UBE.”

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Admission by Motion

“The Court has studied this proposal in various forms since 1983.  It finds that the time has come for New Jersey to join the vast majority of United States jurisdictions –40 states plus the District of Columbia—which offer admission by motion.  The Court acknowledges the legitimate concern of some contributors that this decision may have adverse consequences for certain New Jersey lawyers, particularly in today’s economic climate.  But the Court could not identify a reason grounded in the public interest to continue to decline adoption of admission by motion.”

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“Following a careful review, the Court adopts the recommendations of the Working Group on Ethical Issues Involving Metadata in Electronic Documents, and makes a number of amendments to the Court Rules regarding electronic documents and metadata.  The measures are designed to protect sensitive client data, clarify attorneys’ professional obligations, and foster education programs so that the legal community may be better equipped to meet the unique challenges inherent in exchanging documents electronically — a modern reality that is ubiquitous in the contemporary practice of law.”

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The court said it is making these changes in order to “embrace many benefits of the modern practice of law and to confront shifting challenges facing our profession.”


Click here to read the court’s press release announcing these various changes.