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Should I write an addendum

My freshman year I had an incident with drinking and got on probation with my school. I just called the office of student conduct to ask if it would show up on my transcript or any materials that get sent to law schools. They told me no and that the only time they report an incident to a school is if they reach out for a "background check sort of thing." Even in that case, they only report "major" incidents. I asked if probation is considered a major incident and he said no. To clarify even further I asked if my probation would be reported to law schools if they reached out and he said "no probation isn't considered a major incident."

Based off his answers, I don't think I need to write an addendum. I'm just so worried that somehow law schools will find out and in the case I didn't write one, I'm screwed. On the other hand, if I write one and they don't find out, I also screwed myself. I know you're supposed to write an addendum about any incident you had, but if it's not being reported, do I need to? I really don't know what to do here. I don't want to write about a drinking incident if I don't have to. But I also don't want it to bite me in the butt.


  • PatBackkPatBackk Core Member
    198 karma

    even if it doesn't show up now, it may show up on your character and fitness when you're trying to pass the bar exam. I think you should be fine if it wasn't reported to the police and stayed within the school, but I would definitely talk to an admissions expert about it.

  • andrew.rsnandrew.rsn Alum Member
    831 karma

    It is always best to disclose everything even, if you don't think you'll need to. I would suggest you disclose this on your Character and Fitness section. From what I've read, the ABA does a very deep dive, and if they find something that you didn't disclose to your Law School, the Law School can decide to rescind your degree. Better to play it safe than sorry!

  • sarakimmelsarakimmel Member
    1488 karma

    Once you get into filling out apps you will see that many of the schools' Character and Fitness sections will ask about such incidents and they will specify that it should be explained in full regardless of the circumstances or whether it was major/minor, reported/not reported. You will not be denied entry to law school simply for making one mistake, but you can lose your chance to sit for the bar by failing to disclose.

    As the AdComms say, when in doubt, disclose! Be succinct, but thorough in your explanation. Be sure you own your mistake(s), take responsibility, and demonstrate how you have grown/changed since the incident.

  • mesposito886mesposito886 Member
    254 karma

    I had a similar "incident" my freshman year of college, as did a close friend of mine (birds of a feather!) who applied in 2019-2020 and took the route of full disclosure. He was accepted into several t14s and is now attending a t20 school, so safe to say disclosing didn't hurt his chances of admission by very much. I suspect law schools see quite a lot of addendums regarding drinking-related probations. I plan on disclosing it - better to be safe than sorry.

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