California Bar Exam Tips: “Predictions” for Day Three’s Essays & Performance Test

Hello All,

Congratulations on being 2/3 of the way done with the California Bar Exam.

Hopefully by now you are resting, have had a healthy meal and may be doing a light review of topics for tomorrow.

We had an issue with the site crashing (more bandwidth next bar round – even the California bar exam’s website has crashed in past years due to heavy traffic – so I guess my site is not immune either).

So, the long awaited “predictions” for day three’s essays and some tips and suggestions regarding tomorrow’s performance test . . .


The caveat (I know you have read it in previous posts) again is that no one can predict this exam. So far Criminal Law, Professional Responsibility and Tort Remedies (possibly some other Remedies too) were tested on day one. PTA was an objective writing assignment that involved a restrictive covenant.

None of the above was a surprise subject wise. Everyone expected Criminal Law (but, many were expecting a murder essay). I certainly expected to see a full Professional Responsibility essay and Tort Remedies was also on our list. Since the subjects I was expecting have shown up, I am not varying my earlier “predictions” much.

So here is the short hand version:

I still think that Torts is a real possibility. Many examinees will presume that Torts is not going to be tested since there was an issue of conversion on yesterday’s exam. However, I still think that Torts is equally likely to show up. I also would think it would be highly likely to see a cross-over exam. Torts makes for a good cross-over with Professional Responsibility.
I have not changed my mind much about the “predicted” topics. Therefore, I would most definitely look over Constitutional Law (I feel this is quite likely – I have posted a Constitutional Law Essay here on the blog in an earlier post – I do recommend that you read or re-read my prior posts on Con Law – you will find the Constitutional Law Essay and an approach that may come in handy).
I also feel that Civil Procedure is possible. (Again, I am not changing my mind much about my earlier predictions. Due to yesterday’s PT that involved a non-compete clause (so I am told) I am a bit less inclined to think that a Property essay is as likely. However, ANYTHING is possible. Looking over what has NOT been tested within the area of Property in some time – Covenants, Equitable Servitudes and Easements are all areas within Property that have not shown up incredibly recently.
Essentially, you know that you need to be prepared for anything. That does not mean that you need to know every single rule statement perfectly. But, if you have any subject that you are particularly dreading seeing tomorrow – then regardless of my “predictions” that is where I would spend some of my time if I were you.
Many are predicting Corporations – it is certainly possible – but not my first pick right now.
Professional Responsibility OFTEN repeats as part of a question on day three – so be sure to review PR.
Evidence always makes for a good cross over and could repeat.
I will be writing more in the next 20 minutes or so . . . I just want to get these basic “predictions” up right now. For those of you who have been following the blog – there is nothing really all that new.
Please check back in for other possible suggested essay scenarios – these will only take a few minutes to read and will be worthwhile – especially if you actually see it on tomorrow’s exam.
Most would predict a persuasive PT for tomorrow. While I would tend to agree, the most important thing is to simply follow instructions to a T. PT A (from what I have heard) seems to have been fairly straightforward and was an objective assignment.
I would expect that perhaps PTB would include more cases, and or statutes and could possibly require you to write multiple documents.
However, if I had to pick a particular type of PT for tomorrow, I would pick an appellate brief. This may or may not be what you get, of course. But, in the event that you do . . . pay close attention to which parts of the “brief” you are asked to write. For example, on past Performance Tests, examinees were asked to write an Appellate Brief (in the senior partner memo – or assigning memo) but were also instructed in that same memo (to you, the applicant) to only write certain sections of the brief. In these past exams, there was an internal/firm-wide/”to all associates” memo within the case file that provided instructions on how all appellate briefs should be written. Often, examinees will follow that second “firm wide” memo to all associates blindly, disregarding the instructions from the Senior Partner memo to “only write sections . . . ” etc.
Just be careful, read very carefully and remember, the PT is form over substance and you must, must, must, above all . . . FOLLOW INSTRUCTIONS.
Keep your wits about you, you can do this!
All the best to all who are studying for the exam!