Pennsylvania Bar Exam details

A typical Pennsylvania Bar Exam is a 2-day exam

Pennsylvania Bar Exam information is subject to change without notice. Please verify with the Pennsylvania Board of Law Examiners.

Please also reference the NCBE Covid-19 updates page for NCBE updates and individual jurisdiction announcements.

Day 1

  • Two 45-minute Pennsylvania Essay Exam questions (in the AM)
  • One 90-minute Performance Test (PT) question (in the AM)
  • Four 45-minute Pennsylvania Essay Exam questions (in the PM)

Day 2

  • Multistate Bar Exam (MBE), a 200-question, multiple-choice exam (100 questions in the AM, 100 questions in the PM)


  • Constitutional Law
  • Contracts/Sales
  • Criminal Law/Procedure
  • Evidence
  • Federal Civil Procedure
  • Real Property
  • Torts

Pennsylvania Essay Subjects

  • Business Organizations (including Corporations, Partnerships, Limited Liability Companies and Professional Corporations)
  • PA Civil Procedure
  • Conflict of Laws
  • PA DUI Law
  • Employment Discrimination (Title VII, ADA and ADEA)
  • Family Law
  • Federal Income Taxation
  • PA Evidence
  • PA Rules of Professional Responsibility
  • Trusts and Decedents’ Estates
  • U.C.C. Article II Sales
  • Wills
  • Plus all MBE subjects

Pennsylvania Performance Test

  • “Closed universe” practical question using instructions, factual data, cases, statutes and other reference material supplied by examiners.


  • A scaled score of 75 on the MPRE is required for admission.

Click here to learn more about the MPRE.

Applicants need a combined minimum scaled score of 272 to pass the exam. The combined essay and PT scaled score count as 55% of the total score and the scaled MBE is 45% of the total.

Acceptance of MBE Score

Pennsylvania does not accept an MBE score from an exam taken in another jurisdiction.

Admission on Motion

May be admitted without exam from states admitting attorneys from Pennsylvania without exam. After admission in reciprocal state, must have practiced (including teaching in any accredited U.S. law school) for at least five of seven years immediately preceding application. Must also be a graduate of an ABA accredited law school. Visit for listing of states and jurisdictions that have reciprocity with Pennsylvania. Applicants must meet the requirements of Rule 204 to qualify.

Bridge the Gap program

Newly admitted lawyers must complete the four-hour Bridge the Gap program prior to their first CLE compliance deadline.

We compile all of the information that you need to know about the dates, format, subjects tested, deadlines, fees and more - for each U.S. state - in the free BARBRI Bar Exam Digest.

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