The Arizona Supreme Court modified the minimum passing score for admission to practice law in Arizona from 273 to 270 for its Uniform Bar Examination through Administrative Order 2023-159. The new passing score will apply to those who sat for the July 2023 administration of the bar examination and will be the minimum passing score going forward. Scores for those who completed the July 2023 administration of the bar examination in Arizona will be released on Oct. 13, 2023.
The Court’s decision comes amid studies and decisions from other states, both regionally and nationally, to lower their minimum passing score on the examination. Experts in test creation and administration have identified a range of scores that demonstrate minimum competency to practice law. Arizona’s score modification is more closely aligned with other jurisdictions, while remaining within the range demonstrating minimum competency to practice law. Nationally, bar examination passing scores currently range between 260 and 270.
Candidates seeking admission to the practice of law in Arizona through Uniform Bar Examination score transfer must have achieved a minimum score of 273 prior to the July 2023 test administration or must have achieved a minimum score of 270 effective beginning with the July 2023 test administration and for all subsequent administrations.
Candidates seeking admission on motion in connection with the three-year bar examination lookback provision—in Ariz. R. Sup. Ct. 34(f)(4)—must have achieved a minimum score of 273 prior to the July 2023 test administration or must have achieved a minimum score of 270 effective beginning with the July 2023 test administration and for all subsequent administrations.
The bar exam is a two-day event held twice a year on the last Tuesday and Wednesday of February and July nationwide. Arizona is one of 41 jurisdictions that administer the Uniform Bar Exam (UBE). Participating states and jurisdictions will accept UBE score transfers that meet individual state and jurisdictions’ minimum score requirements for admission to practice law.