Logo

First Time Applicant by Exam


MJP/In-house Counsel


Comity Instructions

Application Amendments


Re-Examination

 

Non-Standard Testing Applications - Instructions

For any fees due to the Tennessee Board of Law Examiners, please note that we do not accept payment by credit card. We accept cash, checks, cashier’s checks and money orders only.

 

Instructions for Application by Exam

The process for submitting an application for admission by examination is now completed online at http://synergy.tnble.com/. The required documentation has not changed; only the process by which it is submitted.  The current forms containing the required information are included below so that you can begin assembling the required information. THE TBLE WILL NOT ACCEPT HARD COPIES OF APPLICATIONS. Instructions for submitting your online application may be found by clicking HERE.

Applicants to the Bar of Tennessee are responsible for ensuring that all documents are submitted to the Board of Law Examiners in a timely manner. Applicants may be notified by the Board that there is a deficiency in the file; however, such notification is a courtesy. Failure of the Board to notify an applicant of a deficiency does not entitle the Applicant to an extension of time to submit the required documentation. Items must be received in the office or submitted electronically on or before the deadline. A postmark on or before the deadline does not constitute timely receipt and will not be considered as a timely submission.

An application to for admission by examination consists of the following items*:

Documents in BOLD must be received by the timely deadline or a late fee will apply. If you fail to provide any of these documents (including information provided by third parties) by the final deadline (Jan 10 for Feb exam; June 10 for July exam) you will not be eligible to sit for the bar examination. (Please note that the Notice of Intent form and checklist are no longer required. The information from the forms has been merged into the Tennessee Supplement).

Some steps to take prior to completing your application include:

Deadlines. Familiarize yourself with the deadlines included under the Exam Schedule tab. Pursuant to Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 7, Sections 3.10 and 11.02, neither the Administrator nor the Board has the discretion to waive or extend the dates for filing applications nor may any fees be waived. It is highly recommended that you not wait until the last day to file your application as any deficiency found will result in a finding by the Board that you are not eligible to sit for the examination. The burden of responsibility is on the applicant. The Board will deny an application if any item is missing, regardless of when it was requested by the applicant.

Applicable Rule. Read and familiarize yourself with Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 7. The filing of an application indicates that you have read and understand Rule 7. Failure to adhere to the requirements may be viewed as a character and fitness issue.

Create your NCBE Number Account. Create a secure NCBE number account by accessing www.ncbex.org and selecting NCBE Number account from the “Applicant Login” at the top of the page.


NCBE Header
The NCBE number will be required on all forms completed for the NCBE and the BLE application process. 

Complete the online NCBE application. The NCBE application process for the character and fitness investigation will not change. You may begin the NCBE Application at any time within six (6) months prior to the examination you plan to take; however, you may not submit it to the Tennessee BLE until the application period is open for submission. To access the NCBE Application, login to www.ncbex.org and select Character and Fitness from the “Applicant Login” at the top of the page:


NCBE Header

When you have completed the application form online, print your completed NCBE application. Sign and have notarized the appropriate pages as required. Make a copy of the application for your records. Scan and save as a .pdf the original, signed and notarized application, including attachments. Submit one original to the NCBE with your payment either by filling in the credit card information or by paying with a check or money order.

The Tennessee Supplemental Form. The Tennessee Supplemental will be completed online. The attached form is for information only regarding the form requirements. All Applicants for the Tennessee Bar Examination agree by making application for examination to test by laptop unless an Applicant elects to HANDWRITE the exam. The Tennessee Supplemental Application includes the laptop testing forms. If you chose to handwrite the exam, the application will not move forward unless you complete the laptop release form. Simply fill in the boxes with “I elect to handwrite” and do not sign at the bottom.  If the forms are not completed with signatures and all information requested, the TBLE views that omission as an affirmative election to HANDWRITE the examination, even if the Applicant clicks “yes” for laptop testing in the Synergy Online Application program.

Non-standard testing applications. If you require non-standard testing, please complete the NON-STANDARD TESTING APPLICATION  online. You must upload the following documentation:

NOTE that the deadline for filing an application for admission and the deadline for filing supplemental applications for Non-Standard Testing is the same, applicants are no longer required to file Non-Standard Testing applications 30 days prior to the deadline. However, if one application is not filed by the timely Application Deadline, you will be charged a late fee even if your other application is filed on or before the deadline, unless the need for non-standard testing arises after the timely deadline and the examination application was filed prior to the timely deadline.

Undergraduate Transcript. Order and have sent to the TBLE an official transcript from the school where you received your undergraduate degree. DO NOT send a transcript from every school you attended. PDF transcripts are not accepted. Transcripts must be sent directly to the Board and received by the deadline for filing applications for the application to be complete and for the applicant to be eligible to sit. An undergraduate transcript received after the deadline will result in denial of eligibility to sit for the exam. Neither the Board nor the staff of the TBLE has the discretion or authority to waive or extend the dates for filing applications. A postmark on or before the deadline does not constitute timely receipt and will not be considered as a timely submission.

Law Degree Verification Print out the LAW DEGREE verification form. NOTE: THIS IS A NEW THREE PAGE FORM; WE WILL NOT ACCEPT THE OLD FORM FOR FIRST TIME APPLICATIONS FILED ON OR AFTER OCTOBER 1, 2013. Complete and have the top portion of the form notarized and send ALL pages to your law school Dean for completion. Forms must be sent directly to the Board and received by the deadline for filing applications for the application to be complete and for the applicant to be eligible to sit. A law degree verification received after the deadline will result in denial of eligibility to sit for the exam. Neither the Board nor the staff of the TBLE has the discretion or authority to waive or extend the dates for filing applications. A postmark on or before the deadline does not constitute timely receipt and will not be considered as a timely submission.

BOTH THE UNDERGRADUATE TRANSCRIPT AND THE LAW DEGREE VERIFICATION FORM MUST BE SENT TO THE BOARD OF LAW EXAMINERS DIRECTLY FROM THE SCHOOL OR CLEARINGHOUSE AND MUST CONTAIN THE SCHOOL SEAL.

Other Bar Admissions. If you have been admitted in another jurisdiction you must also submit a certificate of good standing from each state in which you are or have been licensed by the deadline. If you become licensed in another jurisdiction while your Tennessee application is pending you must amend your application and provide a certificate of good standing.

Letters of Recommendation. You must submit letters of recommendation from three (3) law professors under whom you have studied, or lawyers or judges for whom you have worked. The Board does not accept letters from the following family members: parents, grandparents, siblings or spouses. If a relative other than you parent, sibling, spouse or grandparent is providing the recommendation, the relationship must be disclosed in the letter. Letters may be sent to the applicant and uploaded to synergy or sent directly to the Board and received by the deadline for filing applications for the application to be complete and for the applicant to be eligible to sit. A late recommendation letter will result in denial of eligibility to sit for the exam. Neither the Board nor the staff of the TBLE has the discretion or authority to waive or extend the dates for filing applications. A postmark on or before the deadline does not constitute timely receipt and will not be considered as a timely submission.

Foreign Educated Applicants. If your legal education was received in a country other than the United States, you must furnish information demonstrating that your undergraduate and law school education was substantially equivalent to the requirements of Section 2 of Rule 7 of the Rules of the Tennessee Supreme Court. Such written evidence may include records from your undergraduate and law schools including, but not limited to, courses taken, number of hours per course taken, grades received, and documentary evidence showing accreditation of your schools by the appropriate accrediting agency in that country. See Article 7 of the Rules of the Tennessee Supreme Court.

Licensed to practice in a country other than the United States. If you are licensed to practice law in a country other than the United States, you will need to furnish:

(a) A certified copy of the record or license of the court which admitted you to practice in such country.

(b) At least three (3) letters from attorneys or judges in such country certifying that you are in good standing at that bar, or were in good standing at that bar when you left that country.

SPECIAL NOTE:
Tennessee does not accept previous MBE scores and no longer permits applicants to take two exams concurrently due to the adoption of the MPT exam.

Back to Top


Multi-Jurisdictional Practice/In- House Counsel Admission Instructions

Admission under this Rule is governed by Section 10.01 of Rule 7 of the Tennessee Supreme Rules

Please follow the steps below to apply for the MJP/In-house Counsel Practice Certificate:

Back to Top


Instructions for Application by Comity

Each applicant is now responsible for requesting their own background check from the National Conference of Bar Examiners.

Please follow the steps below to apply for comity admission to Tennessee:

Back to Top


Application Amendments

The process for submitting documents has changed. The required documentation has not changed; however, the application will be submitted online.  The current forms containing the required information are included below so that you can begin assembling the required information. THE TBLE WILL NOT ACCEPT HARD COPIES OF APPLICATIONS OR AMENDMENTS.

Until you are admitted to the Tennessee Bar or your application is otherwise terminated, you are under a continuing obligation to keep your application current and must update responses whenever there is an addition to or a change to the information previously provided to the Board of Law Examiners or the NCBE. The updates, including address changes, must be made in writing and include all relevant documentation. Any changes in the responses to the completed NCBE Application must be filed with the NCBE if the NCBE report has not been completed (approx 4 months from filing date). All changed must be submitted to the Tennessee Board of Law Examiners at https://synergy.tnble.com.

Applicants to the Bar of Tennessee are responsible for ensuring that all documents are submitted to the Board of Law Examiners in a timely manner. Applicants may be notified by the Board that there is a deficiency in the file; however, such notification is a courtesy. Failure of the Board to notify an applicant of a deficiency does not entitle the Applicant to an extension of time to submit the required documentation.

Some form of Amendment must be filed by any Applicant who previously submitted a completed application when:

  1. Information included on the original complete Application has changed that requires the filing of an amendment to the NCBE Application or the Tennessee Supplement (other than a change of address, which is completed by updating the user profile in Synergy);

  2. An Application has been on file for two (2) years or longer and the Applicant has not been successful on the bar examination or has not been licensed. If an Applicant has been successful on the bar examination but not licensed and the successful scores are more than two years old, the Applicant must re-take the examination.

Back to Top


Re-Examination

The process for submitting an application for admission by examination is now completed online at http://synergy.tnble.com/. The required documentation has not changed; only the process by which it is submitted.  The current forms containing the required information are included below so that you can begin assembling the required information. THE TBLE WILL NOT ACCEPT HARD COPIES OF APPLICATIONS. Instructions for submitting your online application may be found by clicking HERE.

Applicants to the Bar of Tennessee are responsible for ensuring that all documents are submitted to the Board of Law Examiners in a timely manner. Applicants may be notified by the Board that there is a deficiency in the file; however, such notification is a courtesy. Failure of the Board to notify an applicant of a deficiency does not entitle the Applicant to an extension of time to submit the required documentation. Items must be received in the office or submitted electronically on or before the deadline. A postmark on or before the deadline does not constitute timely receipt and will not be considered as a timely submission.

An application to for admission by examination consists of the following items*:

Documents in BOLD are due by the timely deadline or a late fee will apply. If you fail to provide any of these documents (including information provided by third parties) by the final deadline (Jan 10 for Feb exam; June 10 for July exam) you will not be eligible to sit for the bar examination. (Please note that the Notice of Intent form and checklist are no longer required. The information from the forms has been merged into the Tennessee Supplement).

Some steps to take prior to completing your application include:

Deadlines. Familiarize yourself with the deadlines included under the Exam Schedule tab. Pursuant to Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 7, Sections 3.10 and 11.02, neither the Administrator nor the Board has the discretion to waive or extend the dates for filing applications nor may any fees be waived. It is highly recommended that you not wait until the last day to file your application as any deficiency found will result in a finding by the Board that you are not eligible to sit for the examination. The burden of responsibility is on the applicant. The Board will deny an application if any item is missing, regardless of when it was requested by the applicant.

Applicable Rule.  Read and familiarize yourself with Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 7. The filing of an application indicates that you have read and understand Rule 7. Failure to adhere to the requirements may be viewed as a character and fitness issue.

Re-Examination. If you are applying for Re-Examination, click here for the Re-Examination Application form, which will be completed online. The attached form is for information only regarding the form requirements. List any amendments to the NCBE application by question or form number and note any amendments to the Tennessee Supplement. Deadlines for Applications and Amendments are listed in the tab on the left column labeled “Exam Schedule.” The Board cannot waive deadlines under any circumstances. All Applicants for the Tennessee Bar Examination agree by making application for examination to test by laptop unless an Applicant elects to HANDWRITE the exam. The Tennessee Supplemental Application includes the laptop testing forms. If you chose to handwrite the exam, the application will not move forward unless you complete the laptop release form. Simply fill in the boxes with “I elect to handwrite” and do not sign at the bottom.  If the forms are not completed with signatures and all information requested, the TBLE views that omission as an affirmative election to HANDWRITE the examination, even if the Applicant clicks “yes” for laptop testing in the Synergy Online Application program.

Applications on file two (2) years or longer:   For any Application that has been on file for two (2) years or longer, go to http://www.ncbex.org  and complete the Supplemental Report in order to update your Character and Fitness Report. Upon completion of the online application, sign and have notarized the appropriate pages as required. Make a copy of the application for your records. Scan and save as a .pdf the original, signed and notarized application. Submit one original to the NCBE with your payment either by filling in the credit card information or by paying with a check or money order. Upload the .pdf as instructed with the amendment to Synergy. You will need the new Application Number (below the bar code on the foot of each page of the NCBE application) in addition to your NCBE number to complete the application.

In addition to the Supplemental Application, you must submit three (3) new letters of recommendation from lawyers with whom you have worked or studied. The Board does not accept letters from the following family members: parents, grandparents, siblings or spouses. If a relative other than your parent, sibling, spouse or grandparent is providing the recommendation, the relationship must be disclosed in the letter. Letters may be sent to the applicant and uploaded to synergy or sent directly to the Board and received by the deadline for filing applications for the application to be complete and for the applicant to be eligible to sit. A late recommendation letter will result in denial of eligibility to sit for the exam. Neither the Board nor the staff of the TBLE has the discretion or authority to waive or extend the dates for filing applications. Letters must be received in the office or submitted electronically on or before the deadline. A postmark on or before the deadline does not constitute timely receipt and will not be considered as a timely submission.

Non-standard testing applications.  If you require non-standard testing, please complete the NON-STANDARD TESTING APPLICATION online. You must upload the following documentation:

NOTE that the deadline for filing an application for admission and the deadline for filing supplemental applications for Non-Standard Testing is the same, applicants are no longer required to file Non-Standard Testing applications 30 days prior to the deadline. However, if one application is not filed by the timely Application Deadline, you will be charged a late fee even if your other application is filed on or before the deadline.

Licensed to practice in a country other than the United States.  If you are licensed to practice law in a country other than the United States, you will need to furnish:

(a) A certified copy of the record or license of the court which admitted you to practice in such country.

(b) At least three (3) letters from attorneys or judges in such country certifying that you are in good standing at that bar, or were in good standing at that bar when you left that country.

For Applicants who have taken the bar 3 or more times:

An applicant who has failed 3 or more examinations shall not be permitted to take another examination except upon filing with the Board, at the time of application to take the examination:

An applicant who has failed 3 or more examinations shall not be permitted to take another examination until at least one examination has intervened between the last examination which the applicant failed and the one the applicant seeks eligibility to take. If the Board determines that the applicant's course of study is not sufficient evidence of additional legal education to justify re-examination, the Board may refuse to allow the applicant to take that examination.

SPECIAL NOTE:
Tennessee does not accept previous MBE scores and no longer permits applicants to take two exams concurrently due to the adoption of the MPT exam

 

Submitting documents only to the Tennessee Board of Law Examiners or to the NCBE does not constitute a complete application and may delay your licensing.

 

Back to Top


 

The forms found on this page are in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) format. They require the use of the free Adobe Reader, which is available at no cost by clicking on the button below:

get adobe reader