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Err on the Side of Full Disclosure? (C&F)

AnthonyD-1AnthonyD-1 Alum Member

Hi everyone, this is my first post here.
Some background: I previously applied to law school two years ago, I was accepted, but did not attend. I did not include a C&F addendum on my previous application and I do not plan on applying to the same school during this cycle. I am a pretty anxious person and I tend to overthink everything, of course law school applicants are no exception.

When I was around 10 - 12 I was out with a friend when he was caught shoplifting. I knew he was doing it, but did not take anything myself. We were taken to the back by loss prevention and they did call the police. My friend was older than me and he was charged with shoplifting. I am 25 now and I honestly do not remember many details from the event. I cannot decide if I should include a short addendum about the event since I was involved. Would it be silly to include? I did not include it on my previous application two years ago, if I include it now would that be an issue? (Not the same school)

The addendum would be something similar to this:
"In the interested of full disclosure I am writing this addendum to detail an event that occurred while I was a juvenile. While shopping with a friend at a Walmart, I was present when he shoplifted but did not shoplift from the store myself. The police were called but I was not charged with any crime."

As I said, I am an anxious person. My fear is that it might cause an issue in the future, maybe with the bar C&F.

Thanks for any feedback! :)


  • David BusisDavid Busis Member Moderator
    7085 karma

    Take a look at this lesson:

    Every application has different character and fitness questions, so you won't be writing a voluntary addendum no matter what. Some applications will ask questions that will compel you to disclose; others will not.

    If a C&F question compels you to disclose, you should. It's very unlikely that this incident will make anyone think twice about admitting you if you explain exactly what happened and why it will never happen again. On the other hand, if you don't disclose, it could cause problems when you're trying to pass the bar.

    Note that you will have rewrite your addendum—see

  • Leah M BLeah M B Alum Member
    8392 karma

    Generally it’s best to disclose value not. However, I think it’s unlikely you will need to. As David said above, you will just have to read each C&F prompt very closely. If the question says, “Have you ever been charged with a crime...” it sounds like your truthful answer is now. (The way I read this, your friend was charged but you were not, correct?) I can’t really think of a prompt that would mean you need to disclose this, but you will need to read every prompt very closely, and perhaps even call the school for clarification if you are not sure. No one will hold this incident against you, but they will if you are not forthcoming about it. However, since it sounds like only your friend was charged and you were not, I think it’s unlikely you will need to disclose it.

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