The Maine Supreme Judicial Court on Thursday rejected Husson University's request to allow the graduates of its proposed law school to take the Maine bar exam, the school's second rejection in two years.
In outlining the court's reasons for its decision, Chief Justice Leigh I. Saufley wrote the school has not opened its doors and does not intend to seek accreditation from the American Bar Association, which were the same reasons cited by the court when it previously rejected Husson's request, according to the Bangor Daily News. But Saufley also wrote the court's decision creates "no legal barrier that prevents Husson from opening its doors to students."
Husson representatives argued its law school would cater to nontraditional students, offer courses at night and during the day, and allow students to attend part time, according to the Daily News. Julie Green, the school's spokeswoman, told the newspaper that as of Thursday, Husson had received 192 inquiries from potential students.
Don Brown, a Brewer lawyer who went to law school after a career as a police officer, told the Daily News the supreme court's decision is "unfortunate for the people of Maine." Husson President Robert Clark told the newspaper the school would examine the court's decision at its board meeting in April.
The University of Maine Law School in Portland is currently the only law school in the state. It is accredited by the American Bar Association but does not offer evening classes, according to the Daily News. Most of its students attend classes full time and are traditional students in their early and mid-20s who enroll after earning their bachelor's degrees.
Justices Jon Levy, Warren Silver, Ellen Gorman and Joseph Jabar agreed with the court's decision to refuse the school's request, the Daily News reported. Justice Donald Alexander, who teaches part time at the law school in Portland, and Justice Andrew Mead, whose wife, Kelly Mead, teaches at Husson, did not participate in the decision, the newspaper said.
Read the article from the Bangor Daily News >>