BAR EXAM

Introduction of bar examinations in the Maldives

The Legal Profession Act 2019 (“LPA”) introduced two essential requirements for becoming licensed to practice as a lawyer in the Maldives:

  • completion of a 1-year training programme (“Licensing Training”) under the supervision of a licensed lawyer; and
  • passing a bar examination (“the Bar Exam”) administered by the Bar Council.

Information regarding the Licensing Training may be found here: Licensing Training – Bar Council of the Maldives (maldivesbarcouncil.org)

Objectives of the Bar Exam

The objective of the Bar Exam is to examine a law graduate’s capacity to practice law in the Maldives. The exam will assess skills at a basic level by addressing a candidate’s analytical abilities and understanding of the law and is intended to set a minimum benchmark for admission to practice.

The Bar Exam will be administered once every calendar year.

Eligibility requirements for the Bar Exam

Candidates wishing to sit the Bar Exam must:

  • be a Maldivian citizen;
  • have obtained a qualifying law degree from an accredited institution (foreign graduates must have a degree which is accepted as a qualifying law degree for the purposes of licensing in the jurisdiction in which it was issued);
  • have fulfilled all applicable registration requirements; and
  • have paid the examination fees.

Further details on these will be published closer to the exam date.

Bar Exam 2022 (BE2022)

Competency Requirements for Bar Exam 2022

  • A competent newly qualified lawyer of the Maldives must be able to apply fundamental legal rules and principles to client problems which s/he might encounter in practice.
  • In relatively straightforward and routine cases s/he will, without assistance, must be able to conduct a case from start to conclusion. In order to do this s/he must be able to identify the main legal issues a client matter raises. S/he must then be able to apply the law to demonstrably progress the client’s matter through its various stages while protecting the client’s interests. S/he must be able to represent the client in court, putting forward the client’s case and defending it reasonably effectively
  • In more complex cases s/he should be able to make an initial judgement about some aspects of the case and progress more routine aspects of it. S/he may need assistance from those with more experience with aspects requiring more sophisticated knowledge of the law, greater judgement and innovative solutions.
  • S/he must be able to recognise common situations which raise issues of ethical conduct and ensure that s/he acts in a way which upholds the ethical standards of the profession.

Structure of the Bar Exam

The Bar Exam will be a multiple-choice exam, testing the knowledge to practice in the following areas:

  1. Tort Law
  2. Criminal Law and Procedure
  3. Constitutional and Administrative Law
  4. Contract Law and Practice
  5. Land Law and Practice
  6. Maldivian Legal System

Exam dates

BE2022 will be the first Bar Exam administered in the Maldives and is scheduled to be held on 19 November 2022.

The exact time will be announced in due course.

Syllabus

The syllabus for the BE2022 scheduled for November will be the same syllabus that was announced on 3 February 2022.

Reading Lists

Reading Lists for the six examinable areas have been developed to assist the preparation for the exam.
Link to Exam Reading Materials:

Disclaimer: The reading lists aim to address concerns of stakeholders regarding the lack of resources or platforms to be able to find the necessary material for the examinees’ preparation for the BE2022. As such, the reading lists are prepared as a study aid for the BE2022.

The reading lists are not intended to be an exhaustive review or source of all information that may be tested in the BE2022. The reading lists are not intended as a replacement for an examinee’s own research and studies, but rather it is meant to supplement an examinee’s preparation for the BE2022.

Moreover, all information included in the reading list may not be examined in the BE2022.

All references to laws and regulations are deemed to be a reference to the respective law or regulation, as amended, until 19 November 2021.

Practice Questions

The following sample questions illustrate the kind of questions that appear on BE2022. Each question is followed by 4 suggested answers of which candidates should select the single best answer. The answer key is at the bottom of the PDF document.

The sample questions do not represent all the material that is covered by BE2022 and may cover material about which there are no questions in BE2022.

To model the pacing required for BE2022 these questions should be answered in 40 minutes.

Registration

BE2022 is now open for registration.

Please apply via this link: https://forms.gle/8125hDSrJD1msFDT8

You will need to upload the following documents when submitting the registration form.
1. National ID card
2. Passport photo
3. Law degree certificate or completion letter issued by the graduating institution (stamped)
4. Full transcript

All those who wish to sit for the BE2022, must apply regardless of a previous registration for the Bar Exam, which was scheduled for 25 June 2022.

Deadline: 12:00 P.M., Tuesday, 20 September 2022.

Fees

The fee for the BE2022 is MVR 6,500 (Six Thousand Five Hundred).

Fees are to be paid upon instructions from the Bar Council, sent separately via email to applicants who have successfully completed the exam application process.

The last date to pay the exam fee is 20 October 2022.

Location

Candidates can choose to select their desired exam location via the exam application form.

Exact locations for the exam will be determined after the completion of the exam registration process, and will depend on the total number of applicants seeking to take the exam in a particular location, and the feasibility of administering the exam in that location.

Final locations and exam centers will be announced in due course, closer to the date.

Format

The BE2022 shall consist of multiple-choice questions. A sample scenario will be provided, and four potential responses will be provided immediately below. The candidate must fill in the bubble on the separate answer sheet, that corresponds to what they believe is the correct answer.

The BE2022 has a total of 120 questions, with 60 questions in the morning session and another 60 questions in the afternoon session.

Language

The BE2022 is dual-language and shall be conducted in both Dhivehi and English.

English is the major testing language; eighty-five percent of questions will be in English and fifteen percent of the questions will be in Dhivehi.

Duration

The BE2022 will be held over two sessions: one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Each session is two hours. Both sessions are mandatory, and the total score is calculated based on the marks of both sessions.

Exam Standards, Assessment Rules and Policies

Please find below Standards and Assessment Rules and Policies

Updates and queries

Please keep referring to this page for updated information related to BE2022.

All Bar Exam-related queries should be sent to bar-exam@maldivesbarcouncil.org

If you are a Maldivian law student or law graduate, the Bar Council invites you to join the Aspiring Lawyers Forum, the dedicated communications platform for all those seeking to join the legal profession to communicate directly with the Bar Council regarding all aspects of legal education in the Maldives, Licensing Training, the Bar Exam, and Admission to the Bar.

The Bar Council will be using the Aspiring Lawyers Forum as its primary communications platform to disseminate information to all those seeking admission to the Maldivian Bar, so all Maldivian law students and law graduates are urged to sign up to this platform.

Sign up for the Aspiring Lawyers Forum using this link: https://forms.office.com/r/DeUBZ1CyKr