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Osakwe v. Board of Bar Examiners

448 Mass. 85 (2006)

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Osakwe v. Board of Bar Examiners

Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court

448 Mass. 85 (2006)

Facts

Gregory Osakwe (plaintiff) earned a Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of Nigeria, attended the Nigerian Law School, passed the Nigerian bar examination, and was admitted to the Nigerian bar. Osakwe also attended law school and was admitted to practice in Trinidad and Tobago. Osakwe moved to Connecticut, where he earned a Master of Laws degree from the University of Connecticut School of Law. Osakwe was admitted to practice in New York and before the United States District Court for the District of Connecticut. Osakwe applied for admission to the Massachusetts bar under the exception to the Juris Doctor (J.D.) requirement for foreign-trained lawyers. The Massachusetts Board of Bar Examiners (the board) (defendant) concluded that Osakwe did not have the necessary academic qualifications to sit for the Massachusetts bar examination. Osakwe’s complaint seeking administrative review was dismissed. Osakwe petitioned the Supreme Judicial Court. One justice dismissed the petition and denied reconsideration. Osakwe appealed to the full court.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Cordy, J.)

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