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Moritz College of Law

Moritz College of Law


Oxford Study Abroad Programs

Semester in Oxford Program

Tips from a Past Student

Shannon Rogers participated in the 2006 Semester in Oxford program and has shared the following tips for interested students.

Things to Think About Before Going to Oxford

Bank Accounts and Credit Cards

  • Notify your bank and credit cards that you will be in Oxford, and also notify them when you travel to other countries. I had my debit card shut down while traveling because I had not informed them that I was going to be in those countries.

Clothing to Bring

  • Bring a suit and/or some business casual clothing. Women may want to bring a dress. Also, bring at least one pair of dress shoes. The dress for field trips is business casual, but a suit will also work well for them. I wore my suit much more often than I had expected. The Founder's Dinner was relatively formal. I wore a cocktail dress. Various other events, such as meeting with alumni, may also entail business casual dress or a suit.
  • Bring comfortable walking shoes... you'll be walking a lot!
  • Bring warm clothes. The winter can be chilly and very windy.

Job Applications from Afar

  • If you plan on mailing job applications from England, bring resume paper with you. The UK uses A4 paper as the standard so you may have to reformat your resume and cover letter to look correct on the different paper size.
  • Bring everything you would bring and wear to an interview if you think you will be flying back for an interview. I flew back and was glad I was completely prepared.

Ohio Bar Examination

  • Take the MPRE before you leave.
  • Send in your application in advance of leaving.
  • Get your papers notarized for the Application to Sit BEFORE leaving. Notaries in the UK cost about fifty pounds and are much harder to find than in the U.S.!
    • NOTE: I got special permission to have my application notarized abroad by a practitioner licensed to notarize in Ohio . This permission had to come from both the Office of Disciplinary Counsel (to avoid disciplinary action against the notary) and from the Bar Examiners Office. It was not easy to get so just notarize the application before leaving.
  • Get a certified check to pay for the Application to Sit before you leave or have someone in the US get one for you. I could not find a place to make a certified check out for me in US currency in Oxford. This included asking various banks and the Post Office.

Other Bar Examinations

  • Check all the relevant deadlines and requirements. You should file anything that can be filed before you leave. Take note of the notary costs and certified check issues listed above.

Things to Think About Once in Oxford

Bank Accounts

  • You cannot get a bank account in Oxford (or at least we were all told we could not) if you are going to be in Oxford for less than six months so work out plans with your bank in the U.S. before going.

Bar/bri

  • If you did not pay for Bar/bri before leaving, have someone check your mail for the bill. The payment should be due some time in mid-April and can only be done with a signature so you may have to mail your information to them.

Credit Cards

  • The UK uses a "chip and pin" rather than signature credit cards now. They should be able to run signature cards anyway if you have proper identification, but some of the smaller stores may reject your card. I opted to carry cash since running signature cards can take a long time to process. Plus, U.S. credit cards tend to bill 3% on every international transaction.

Job Applications from Afar

  • The house at 106 Banbury has a fax machine that you can use to fax to the US for free.
  • After moving from there, the housing likely will not have a free fax machine, but several places will do faxes for about one pound. Londis in Jericho is one place.
  • International cell phone plans are very inexpensive so it may be worth buying a pay-as-you-go cell phone plan and call employers. I used my cell phone a lot more than I had expected, and it came in handy for calling potential employers to explain I was overseas.
    • It may not be going on still, but the best plan we found was at Carphone Warehouse with the Mobile World plan. Calls to the US cost just 5 pence a minute.
  • If you have someone in the US that will take phone calls for you, use that number. It will probably garner more employer responses than if you merely list an international phone number and international address.

Ohio Bar Examination

  • Keep the Bar Examiners up to date on your change of address. You may want to include a comment in your update letter requesting a character and fitness interview once you return to the U.S., if you have not already had it before leaving the U.S.

Other Bar Examinations

  • Other states will also likely require an update of your address if you move. Make sure to keep them informed.

Taxes

  • Federal taxes can be filed online if you do not have your W-2 forms with you to attach and send in. Ohio taxes can be telefiled (unless this changes in the next year) and will not need the W-2 forms physically sent in. You still need all of the information on the W-2 forms though. You can also file for an extension if you do not want to deal with these while abroad.
  • Make sure not to miss the April 15 deadline!