A teenager who passed California's notoriously tricky bar exam at just 17 is now a practicing attorney

  • Peter Park was just 17 when he passed the California state bar exam.

  • It made him the youngest person to pass the notoriously difficult test.

  • Park, now 18, was sworn in as a practicing attorney on Tuesday.

An 18-year-old from California who passed the state’s bar exam when he was only 17 is now working as a practicing attorney.

The Tulare County District Attorney’s office announced the teen’s record-breaking achievement in a Facebook post, saying that it was a “legal history making moment.”

Park’s legal journey began at the age of just 13 when he enrolled in the Northwestern California University School of Law while he was still completing high school, taking advantage of a state bar rule that allows students to apply to law school after completing the College Level Proficiency Exams.

Park completed high school in 2021 and graduated from law school in 2023, per the DA’s post.

The press release said that Park then passed the state’s bar exam on his first attempt when he was 17, beating the previous record held by an 18-year-old.

“It was not easy, but it was worth it. It required discipline and strategy to pass the Bar, and I made it in the end. I am extremely blessed to have discovered this path, and my hope is that more people will realize that alternative paths exist to becoming an attorney,” Park said in the press release.

“I aspire to become a prosecutor because I am driven by a moral obligation to uphold liberty, equality, and justice in society. I admire how prosecutors keep our community safe and bring closure to victims,” he added.

Park was officially sworn in as a practicing attorney on Tuesday, per the DA’s post.

California’s bar exam lasts two days and is renowned for its difficulty.

It consists of three parts — “a 200-item multiple-choice section, also known as the Multistate Bar Examination (MBE), five essay questions, and a performance test designed to assess an applicant’s ability to apply general legal knowledge to practical tasks,” the State Bar of California said in a press release.

The July 2023 results showed a pass rate of only 51.5% out of the 7,555 people who took the exam, down from 52.4% in 2022, per the release.

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