Essay Answers

An answer to a question should demonstrate an applicant’s ability to analyze the facts presented by the question, to select the materials from the immaterial facts, and to discern the points upon which a case turns. It should demonstrate an applicant’s knowledge and understanding of the pertinent principles and theories of law, their relationship to each other, and their qualifications and limitations. It should evidence the applicant’s ability to apply the law to the facts given, and to reason logically in a lawyer-like manner to a sound conclusion from the premises adopted. The applicant should demonstrate a proficiency in using and applying legal principles rather a mere memory of them.

An answer containing only an applicant’s statement of conclusion will receive little or no credit. The applicant should fully state the reasons which support his or her conclusions. All points should be thoroughly discussed. Although an applicant’s answer should be complete, the answer should not volunteer information or discuss legal doctrines that are not necessary or pertinent to the solution of the problem. Unless a question expressly asks for Hawai`i Law, the question should be answered according to legal theories and principles of general application. With the exception of information booklets provided by the NCBE, sample essay questions or answers of past Hawai`i bar examinations are not available.

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