A look at the 2019 Multistate Performance Test

The most innovative component of the Uniform Bar Exam is the Multistate Performance Test. The MPT is a half-day test consisting of two 90-minute, task-related questions. It is designed to test the ability to use lawyering skills in a realistic situation and complete a task that a beginning lawyer should be able to accomplish, within time constraints, regardless of the area of law involved.

The MPT has been available since 1997. It is currently used in 48 jurisdictions, including the District of Columbia and four U.S. territories. It represents 20 percent of the overall UBE score.
Here is a quick look at the four MPT questions used in 2019:

In February, the first question involved administrative law and civil procedure. A child-care facility faced revocation of its license in seven days. Provided with various documents and authorities, the examinee’s task was to draft a brief in support of a motion for a preliminary injunction to halt the revocation until a trial on the merits.

The second question involved a negligence claim by a motorist against a “Good Samaritan” whose intervention led to the client’s injury when hit by another motorist. Armed with a transcript of the client’s interview, a memo from the firm’s private investigator, and excerpts from the Restatement of Torts, the task was to prepare an objective memorandum analyzing the viability of the client’s claim.

In July, the first question was to predict the likelihood of success in vacating a default judgment entered against a foreign manufacturer arising from an earlier arbitration. The “file” included an e-mail from the client, the court order entering the default judgment, applicable court rules, and cases from two neighboring jurisdictions.

The second question required examinees to evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of two estate-planning approaches (a life estate or a contract to make a will) that the client could take regarding his main asset, a house. Provided were: the client’s interview transcript, an appraisal of the house, excerpts from a treatise on life estates, and two cases.

Source: www.ncbex.org/pdfviewer/?file=%2Fdmsdocument%2F233.

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