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Exam Prep. Course: CA Appellate Law Specialist Exam (CIVIL only) (CA)(Recorded in 2015)

Audio program! (check our CLE Programs page for live versions)

The CA Bar Appellate Law Specialist Exam is given every other year in odd years and this year it is scheduled for October 24th.

This is our recorded 2015 Exam Prep audio package.

If you are interested in ordering our 2017 Appellate Law Specialist Exam Prep audio program, please go here.

This recorded package of our 2015 Exam Prep course in appellate law provides you with a thorough overview of the critical areas of civil appellate law and a jump start on your study routine. This carefully planned program will give you tips on how to  take the exam, what to expect on exam day and how to study for it. There is a practice essay session with at least two questions found in the Bar’s sample packet, that concludes with issue spotting and a review of how you could have best answered those questions as well as a few others.

By taking this course you can eliminate the stress that goes with the unknown when preparing for an exam and you can get guidance and subject matter review from those that have taken the exam previously (including those who just took it recently).

The program was taught by two former chairs of the Specialist Committee that writes, grades and administers the exam (and a former chair of the Committee of Bar Examiners) as well as Certified Civil Appellate Specialists.

Please note: Because we cannot know exactly what specific questions and issues the bar will test on, and their “potential topic list” is vast, our program covers most of those topics that the bar lists they might test, but not all. This means that we cannot guarantee every single question or issue that appears on your exam is covered in our course (that would pretty much be impossible). We also strongly recommend you begin studying for the exam early – as early as summer. Last minute studying, even with the help of this course, is always a risky proposition when it comes to such a difficult exam covering so many areas of appellate law.

Special Study Package: If you order this recorded program now, you may apply $300 of the price of the recording towards your live 2017 program registration.  Please make a note of it in the comments section of your order and we’ll call you if/when we book the live course.

If you took this course in 2015 and did not pass the exam, please call us about a special rate at (877) 858-3848.

As a reminder, this program only addresses the CIVIL appellate law exam. It does not cover the criminal appellate law exam topics. Please call and ask for Faith to discuss your options if you are taking the criminal appellate law exam.

* You will also receive a FREE copy of our Exam Prep Course Study Tips, compiled from three of our Exam Prep courses held in 2015. Approximately 2 hours and 50 minutes long.



Click here for the Bar’s requirements regarding the exam and qualifications to be a specialist.  

If you want to take the exam, register early! They have vastly reduced the cost of taking their exam this year (and have waived the extra fee they used to charge to use a computer). The bar has asked us to pass on their registration fee list for you to take their exam:

CA Bar Fees for taking their Legal Specialist Exam in 2017*:
If full payment is received by the bar on or before Sept. 1, 2017: $250
If full payment is received by the bar on or before Oct. 2, 2017: $350

*please note, these are the fees the CA Bar will charge you to take their exam. We are not affiliated with the bar and these are not related to the cost of our courses.




Recorded in 2015, this program was sponsored by:



What You Will Learn

Specialization & exam
• What is specialization?
• Requirements for specialization
• Exam details
• Writing of the Exam / Discussion of ALAC
• Grading of the Exam
• Recertification

Six subject area that can be tested – substantive review and suggestions
• Ethics
• Pre-Briefing
• Motions
• Briefing
• Post-Briefing
• Writs

Finish Subject Area topics
• Sample Multiple-Choice & review
• Four Sample Essay Questions – Issue Spotting Review

Practice Exam Essay Questions (two)

Sample Exam Issue Spotting Discussion
• Issue spotting discussion re: practice exam


“I passed! In no small part thanks to you.”

“Yes, I did pass the appellate specialization certification exam – thanks in large part to your great course.”

“Don’t even think about taking the California Bar Exam for Appellate Specialization without first taking the Pincus prep course. A one of a kind presentation by appellate experts who are familiar with the exam and will prepare you for the big test.”  Jeffrey Lewis, Esq.

“I was just certified this year.  I did take your course two years ago and found it extremely helpful in preparing for the exam and would recommend it to anyone who is thinking of becoming a certified appellate specialist.”

“I passed the August Appellate Specialization Exam.  Ben Shatz, Jennifer King, and Scott Davenport gave a great program and provided very useful advice in preparing for the exam.  Thank you.”

“I’m not sure if I ever told you just how helpful your study guide for the exam was for me.  It was just wonderful – and worked!”  Holly N. Boyer, Esq., Esner, Chang & Boyer

“I just learned that I passed the Appellate Specialist Exam.  I didn’t attend your course in person, I had the CD’s; but the course really helped me pass the exam.  You did a nice job of treating the civil and criminal sides of the exam, I thought.  I found the course very useful and helpful.  Thanks to you and the panel who put it on.”

“I just finished my second listening to your Pincus program re the appellate specialization exam.  I sure do appreciate you putting the program together.  It helped shape my study plan and outline and is a great refresher.  Thanks for participating in it.”  J. Lewis, Esq.

“Got money’s worth.”

“Multiple choice questions and sample answers were very helpful.” Zareh Jaltorossian, Esq.

“Very informative. I appreciate that the speakers were former exam authors.”  Cassidy Davenport, Esq.

“Excellent seminar that prepared for the exam. Interesting panelists with incisive comments and suggestions.” Tom Freeman, Esq.

“It was a good perspective and I appreciated what the speakers had to say.”

“Really appreciated the multiple choice questions.”

“Excellent, well-balanced panel. All highly knowledgeable.”

“The panel’s appellate experience really showed!  Great advice.”

“Very clear and helpful.”

“…Good perspectives on how the exam is written and how questions are phrased.”

“Great presentation!”

“I feel like I’m prepared to take the exam now.  Thank you!”

“Good materials.  The samples really help.”

“Teachers were great!”


Efrat M. Cogan, Esq.
Senior Counsel
Buchalter Nemer

Ms. Cogan is a California State Bar Certified Appellate Specialist.

Efrat M. Cogan is Senior Counsel in the firm’s Litigation and Appellate Practice Groups in Los Angeles. Ms. Cogan is certified as an Appellate Specialist by the California State Bar of Legal Specialization. Her practice areas encompass appellate, real estate and construction, copyright and unfair competition, class actions, professional liability, governmental and constitutional law.

Ms. Cogan has written “Executive Nonacquiescence: Problems of Statutory Interpretation and Separation of Powers,” 60 Southern California Law Review 1143, 1987. She has contributed to the California Municipal Law Handbook, published by the California League of Cities, and has co-authored “The ‘Empire’ Strikes Back: Effective Use of the False Claims Act” (2005). 

Ms. Cogan has been selected as one of Southern California’s Super Lawyers nine times (2004-2006 and 2008-2013) and was also selected as a Southern California Super Lawyer, Corporate Counsel Edition from 2009 to 2010. She currently serves on the California State Bar’s Advisory Commission.

Ms. Cogan earned her J.D. at the University of Southern California, where she was a staff member and articles editor for the Law Review and graduated Order of the Coif. She received her B.A. from the University of California, Los Angeles. 

Scott Wm. Davenport, Esq.
Manning & Kass, Ellrod, Ramirez, Trester LLP

Mr. Davenport is a California State Bar Certified Appellate Specialist. 

Scott Wm. Davenport is the head of the firm’s Appellate Practice Group. A Certified Specialist in Appellate Law, Mr. Davenport has served as the Chair of the California State Bar Committee of Bar Examiners and the Appellate Law Advisory Commission. He is an AV-Rated attorney and was selected by Los Angeles Magazine as a "Super Lawyer," one of Southern California’s Top Lawyers for 6 of the last 8 years. Throughout this career, Mr. Davenport has served as the lead counsel in approximately 400 appellate matters, many of which resulted in published opinions involving cases of first impression, including a per curiam summary reversal in the United States Supreme Court. He has also written multiple amicus briefs on behalf of the Southern Poverty Law Center, a national organization known for its civil rights victories and tolerance education programs.

In addition to currently serving as an Appellate Settlement Officer with the Second District Court of Appeals, Mr. Davenport has served as a judge pro tem in the San Bernardino Superior Court. particular. Mr. Davenport recently co-authored a book for the Continuing Education of the Bar on the proper use of scientific evidence, is a regular contributor to the Los Angeles Daily Journal and has recently been featured in the State Bar’s Ad Campaign, “What Kind of Lawyer Becomes a Certified Specialist?” He also served as a legal consultant on the CBS television series “The Guardian,” an activity which resulted in the drafting of a recurring character for the program named “Scott Davenport.” 

In 2006, Mr. Davenport was involved in three United States Supreme Court matters and one matter before the California Supreme Court. In 2007, Mr. Davenport was back in front of the High Court, this time obtaining a summary reversal in Rettele v. County of Los Angeles. From 2008 to 2010, Mr. Davenport filed multiple briefs in the California Supreme Court in the Marriage Cases, as well as an Amicus Curiae brief in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in the subsequent constitutional challenge to Proposition 8.

Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Davenport served as a Deputy Attorney General with the California Department of Justice and as a judicial extern with both the California Court of Appeal and the United States District Court. Based on this background, Mr. Davenport is often called upon to defend the State of California and the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation in extraordinary writ petitions venued in the variety of trial and appellate courts throughout the state. Mr. Davenport is also a licensed real estate broker who provides practical advice to the firm’s real estate clients.

In 2011, Mr. Davenport authored a book on Workers’ Compensation Appeals. He is also slated to present on the topic of workers’ compensation appeals at an attorney convention in December with Joseph Miller, the Chairman of the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board (the equivalent of the Chief Justice of the WCAB).

Fluent in Spanish, Mr. Davenport has coached youth baseball and soccer, and is a 32nd Degree Mason and a Shriner. A long-time hockey fan, Mr. Davenport finally strapped on the blades himself seven years ago and has been playing ice hockey at least once a week ever since. On two occasions, he was fortunate enough to play in exhibition games immediately following an Anaheim Duck regular season game. He also recently competed in his first half marathon. Mr. Davenport and his wife of 21 years reside in Irvine with their three children.

Hon. Kira L. Klatchko
Superior Court of CA, Riverside County

Judge Kira Kltatchko was appointed to the bench in 2017, serving at the Riverside County Superior Court. 

Previously, Judge Klatchko was a partner at Lewis Brisbois and handled both state and federal appeals arising from all areas of civil practice for clients as varied as cities, businesses and families. She was vice chair of the firm’s national Appellate Practice Litigation group.

Judge Klatchko is also an Appellate Law Specialist, certified by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization.

Judge Klatchko  served for six years on the State Bar of California’s Standing Committee on Appellate Courts, including a term as its chair. She is co-author of the “California” chapter of the “Appellate Practice Compendium” (ABA 2012), an insider’s guide to appellate practice. She is co-contributing editor of “California Civil Appeals and Writs” (Matthew Bender 2014), a comprehensive two-volume practice guide for appellate counsel and general litigators.

Judge Klatchko  was named to the 2015 list of Super Lawyers for Southern California in Appellate Law. She is a former president of the Riverside County Bar Association, and previously served five terms as chair of the RCBA Appellate Section. Judge Klatchko is also a member of the California Academy of Appellate Lawyers.

Judge Klatchko has served as an adjunct professor at La Verne College of Law, teaching legal research and writing. She has also lectured on appellate ethics and practice at numerous conferences and seminars, including the California State Bar Annual Convention and the State and Local Legal Center Supreme Court Practice Seminar and Pincus Professional Education’s Annual Advanced Appellate Conferences in Los Angeles.  

In 2014, Judge Klatchko was inducted into the Desert Bar Association Hall of Fame, as Outstanding Young Attorney of the year. In 2010, Judge Klatchko  was recognized by the City of Palm Springs and Palm Springs Chamber of Commerce with the Athena International Award for Young Professional Leadership, recognizing her professional success and work in the community. Judge Klatchko has sat on the board of directors for Angel View, a nonprofit dedicated to serving disabled children and adults in the Inland Empire region of Southern California. She also sits on the board of directors for OperaArts, a nonprofit presenting music and arts to the community, with emphasis on programs for children and senior citizens.

Judge Klatchko received her bachelor’s degree in political science, with distinction, from the University of California, Berkeley. She earned her master’s degree in business administration from the Executive Management Program at the Peter F. Drucker and Masatoshi Ito School of Management at Claremont Graduate University. She earned her law degree at the University of California, Davis, School of Law, where she served as editor-in-chief of the U.C. Davis Journal of Juvenile Law & Policy.

Jennifer Louise King, Esq.
SK Appellate Group, LLP

Jennifer King is certified as a specialist in appellate law by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization. She is an experienced appellate lawyer who has focused exclusively on appellate work for the past 20 years. Her experience has given her unique insight into all aspects of the appellate process.

She spent more than 10 years as a judicial attorney at the Second District Court of Appeal, where she worked on a wide range of civil matters, including those involving land use, labor and employment law, insurance coverage, medical malpractice and toxic torts. In private practice, she handled post-trial motions and appeals for clients including corporations, developers, insurance companies and public entities. She has appeared before the California Courts of Appeal, the California Supreme Court and the Ninth Circuit Bankruptcy Appellate Panel. She clerked for the Honorable Alicemarie H. Stotler, formerly the Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Central District of California. 

Jennifer taught appellate advocacy at Loyola Law School, and legal research, writing and advocacy at the University of Southern California Gould School of Law. For several years, she also taught a course on how to pass the appellate specialization exam. 

Beyond her practice, Jennifer is actively involved with the California State Bar. She is a member of the State Bar’s Committee on Access to Justice, and formerly served on the State Bar’s Committee on Appellate Courts. She chaired the State Bar’s Appellate Law Advisory Commission, which administers the appellate specialization program.

She served as the President of the Board of Directors of the California Supreme Court Historical Society, an organization dedicated to preserving and promoting California’s legal and judicial history.

In her community, Jennifer serves as the city’s Mayor, and she previously served on her city’s Planning Commission. She has been a member of the Board of Trustees of the Peninsula Education Foundation and the President of the Board of Directors of the YWCA of the Harbor Area and South Bay.

Jennifer graduated from Stanford University with a degree in political science, with distinction. She received her law degree from Stanford Law School.

Benjamin G. Shatz, Esq.
Partner & Appellate Practice Group Co-Chair
Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP

Ben Shatz is a certified specialist in appellate law who has briefed hundreds of civil appeals, writs and petitions in state and federal courts covering areas of law including employment, entertainment, copyright, trademark, land use, banking, insurance, product liability, professional liability, wrongful death, punitive damages, class actions, anti-SLAPP and unfair competition. Before private practice he served as law clerk to Robert J. Johnston, United States Magistrate Judge for the District of Nevada, and as extern to Dorothy W. Nelson, United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

Ben is Editor-in-Chief of California Litigation, the journal of the State Bar’s Litigation Section, chairs the Los Angeles County Bar Association’s State Appellate Judicial Evaluations Committee and serves on the executive committee of LACBA’s Appellate Courts Section. He is a past Chair of the State Bar Committee on Appellate Courts and the LACBA Appellate Courts Committee.

Since 2005, Ben has coordinated lawyer volunteers for the ACE (Appellate Court Experience) program, in which high school students visit the Second District Court of Appeal, for which he was honored as Lawyer of the Year (Private Sector 2008) by the Constitutional Rights Foundation. He has been named a Southern California Super Lawyer in Appellate Practice (2004-2015); listed in Best Lawyers in America for appellate practice (2012-2015); and is AV-Preeminent rated by Martindale-Hubbell.

Ben is a frequent lecturer and publisher of articles on appellate practice, is an editorial consultant for the Matthew Bender Practice Guide on California Civil Appeals & Writs, and blogs at Southern California Appellate News (http://socal-appellate.blogspot.com).


Audio Course and Materials Package – CD or Download: $725

CD: plus $7.50 shipping and, in CA, sales tax.

This is our recorded 2015 Exam Prep audio package. If you are interested in attending our live 2017 Appellate Law Specialist Exam program on August 10-11, 2017 (or ordering the 2017 audio package), please go here.

Special Study Package: If you order this recorded program now, you may apply $300 of the price of the recording towards your live 2017 program registration.  Please make a note of it in the comments section of your order and we’ll call you if/when we book the live course..

CLE Credit

CA General:  This program is approved for 6.0 units of general CLE in California.
CA Certified Legal Specialist:  This program is approved for 6.0 units of Certified Legal Specialist CLE in California in Appellate Law.

Note: Almost all of Pincus Pro Ed’s Appellate related seminars are approved for Certified Appellate Credit, so be sure to check that area of our website so you can meet your Certified Appellate Specialization CLE requirements.

This program is approved for CLE in the states listed above.  Upon request, Pincus Pro Ed will provide any information an attorney needs to support their application for CLE approval in other states other than what is listed above.

Terms and Policies

Recording policy: No audio or video recording of any program is permitted.

Seminar Cancellations: Should you be unable to attend for any reason, please inform us in writing no later than 14 days prior to the event and a credit voucher will be issued. If you prefer, a refund, less a $50 non-refundable deposit, will be issued. No refunds or credits will be given for cancellations received within 14 days of an event. However, if you notify us within 14 days of an event, and wish to convert your in-person attendance registration to an Audio CD package (with handout), we can do so. A small additional shipping charge, and sales tax in CA, will be incurred. No shipping charge is incurred for downloads. We will also issue a voucher for the amount paid if you notify us within 14 days and prefer not to have the audio recording.

Substitutions may be made at any time.

Webinars, Tele-seminars and Webcast Cancellations: Once log-in codes and passwords are issued for a webinar, tele-seminars or webcasts, a refund is not possible. If for any reason you cannot attend the event after you have received the codes, we will automatically convert your registration to an instant streaming/instant download or CD format and provide you with the information you need to access the recording after the program concludes and the recording is available.  Conversions to CD require a $7.50 shipping fee, and in CA, 9% sales tax.

Downloads/CDs/DVDs – Refund policy:

Downloads are non-returnable/non-refundable once purchased and received. Tapes, CDs and DVDs are returnable for a full refund or replacement if defective, within 90 days of purchase.

Reminder: The room temperature at hotels and other seminar locations are notoriously hard to control. Please bring a sweater or jacket in case it gets cold and/or layer as if you are going to the movies so you are comfortable.

$725.00 each

See our CLE list for the live 2017 course. Here is your chance to prepare for the CA Appellate Law Specialist Exam with two former chairs of the Specialist Committee that writes, grades and administers the exam (and a former chair of the Committee of Bar Examiners) as well as Certified Civil Appellate Specialists. Recorded in 2015.