Exam Prep: Criminal Law Certified Legal Specialist Exam (State only) (CA)(Live in 2019)

This program is in the planning stages. Please email us at info@pincusproed.com to get on our list and we will inform you when it is scheduled and available for registration. The expected program (live and recorded) dates are August 8 – 9.

The CA Bar Criminal Law Legal Specialist Exam is Tuesday, October 22, 2019.

Here is your chance to study for the CA Criminal Law Specialist Exam with guidance from Criminal Law Certified Legal Specialists.

At this program, you will get a thorough overview of the critical areas of STATE Criminal 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. We will have a practice essay session with at least two questions found in the Bar’s sample packet, that will conclude with issue spotting and a review of how you could have best answered those questions (the practice test answers will not be graded, just discussed).

By taking this course, you can eliminate the stress that goes with the unknown when preparing for the exam and you can get guidance and subject matter review from those that have taken the exam previously.

PLEASE NOTE: This program only addresses the state criminal law exam.

Don’t miss a FREE copy of our Exam Prep Course Study Tips, compiled from three of our Exam Prep courses held in 2015. Approximately 2.5 hours long. Click here to order the download FREE.

Can’t attend? This program will be recorded live on it’s scheduled date. The Exam Prep audio package in CD or Download format, including all seminar materials, will be available within two – four days after the program. Email us at info@pincusproed.com if you are interested and we will put you on our notification list.


Early Study Special: Order our 2015 Exam Prep audio package for $300 only. Use Coupon code:  crimexamspecial

Important 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 criminal law.

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



REMINDER: We do not recommend making pre-paid, non-refundable travel arrangements in case a program is cancelled due to an emergency. We are not responsible for non-refundable travel/hotel expenses.

If you would like more information from the CA Bar on their exam and becoming a Certified Legal Specialist, click here.


This program is in the planning stages. Please email us at info@pincusproed.com to get on our list and we will inform you when it is scheduled and available for registration.

Day One
August 8, 2019
9:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.

8:30 – 9:30
Preparing for the Exam and What to Expect

Intro to speakers, Specialization & Exam

  • What is specialization? Requirements for specialization (keep it short)
  • Exam details
    • Morning – 8 essays/short answers in 4 hours
    • Afternoon – 75 multiple choice
  • Writing of the Exam / Discussion of ALAC
  • Grading of the Exam
  • What the exam was like
  • What to expect
  • How to prepare / study plans
  • Practical considerations


9:30 – 12:15 (Break at 10:30)
Crimes & Defenses [Subject Area 2]

2.1 DUIs

  • great bodily injury
  • multiple victim enhancements
  • gross negligence
  • sentencing
  • plea bargaining
  • recognizing uncharged enhancements

2.2 Murder (special circumstances)

  • short basic review, nothing in-depth, i.e.:
  • types of special circumstances, felony-murder rule, aiding and abetting, conspiracy

2.3 Sex crimes and related consequences (statute of limitations)
2.4 Tactics/strategies
2.5 Mental health issues and related consequences
2.6 Not guilty by reason of insanity
2.7 Not guilty by reason of insanity hearings on restoration of sanity and extensions of commitment
2.8 Conspiracy
2.9 Crimes against property
2.10 Crimes against person
2.11 Narcotics
2.12 Gang Crimes and enhancements
2.13 Vicarious liability, aiding, and abetting
2.14 “Victimless” Crimes
2.15 Other crimes otherwise not specified in this area

12:15 – 1:15
Networking Lunch with Faculty

1:15 – 5:30
Trial Court and Procedure

3.1 Arrest and bench warrants, summons/subpoenas
3.2 Arraignment
3.3 Deferred entry of judgment and diversion
3.4 Plea bargaining
3.5 Pleadings, joinder and severance
3.6 Grand Jury proceedings
3.7 Discovery
3.8 Preliminary hearings
3.9 Pre-trial and trial publicity
3.10 Right to speedy trial
3.11 Line-ups and identification
3.12 Search and seizure
3.13 Informants
3.14 Pre-trial motion practice
3.15 Confessions and admissions
3.16 Trial motions
3.17 Evidence
3.18 Expert witnesses
3.20 Jury selection
3.21 Misdemeanor sentencing
3.22 Preserving appellate issues
3.23 Felony sentencing
3.23.1 California Rules of Court
3.23.2 Prior convictions
3.23.3 Enhancements
3.23.4 Probation
3.23.5 Proposition 36
3.23.6 Three Strikes
3.23.7 Expungements and similar relief
3.23.8 Immigration consequences
3.23.9 Duties after judgment
3.23.10 Writs
3.24 Present and future collateral consequences and disabilities
3.25 Sexually Violent Predator proceedings
3.26 Mentally Disordered Offender proceedings
3.27 Credit for time served and related provisions
3.28 Bail and other forms of release from custody pending finality of judgment
3.29 Present competency proceedings

Day Two
August 9, 2019
9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.


9:00 – 9:15
Professional Responsibility [Subject Area 1]

1.1 Duties to client, opposing counsel and the Court
1.2 Conflicts of interest
1.3 Dual representation

9:15 – 10:00
State Juvenile [Subject Matter 5]

5.1 W&I 707/ Prop 21
5.2 W&I 602
5.3 Disposition
5.4 Detention hearings
5.5 Age/competency
5.6 Records

10:00 – 10:30
Appeals [Subject Matter 4]

4.1 Preserving appellate issues and perfecting right to appeal
4.2 Misdemeanor appeals
4.3 Felony appeals
4.4 Federal and State Habeas Corpus

10:30 – 10:45

10:45 – 12:00
Subject Area 6: Federal Sentencing

6.1  Guidelines
6.2  Mandatory minimum/maximum
6.3  Violations of probation and supervised release
6.4  Bureau of Prisons Issues
6.5  Criminal Forfeiture
6.6  Detention

(on your own)

1:00 – 1:30
Attendees take one practice question

1:30 – 2:15
Issue Spotting discussion

  • Issue spotting re: practice exam
  • Issue spotting/potential answers for other sample questions provided in packet (taken from bar site), as time allows

2:15 – 2:30

2:30 – 3:00
Attendees take one practice question

3:00 – 4:00
Issue spotting and final q/a

  • Issue spotting re: practice exam
  • Issue spotting/potential answers for other sample questions provided in packet (taken from bar site), as time allows



This program is in the planning stages.  Please email us at info@pincusproed.com to get on our list and we will inform you when it is scheduled and available for registration.

August 8-9, 2019

Day 1 – August 8th:
9:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. (Networking lunch included)

Day 2 – August 9th:
9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. (Lunch on your own)


Will be announced shortly.


The following testimonials are from our previous Exam Preps on Criminal Law.

“I passed the last criminal specialist exam thanks to your course. It was very helpful.” David Sandhaus, Esq.

“Speakers were knowledgeable and effective.” Vijan Dinakar, Esq.

“Topics were very concise.” Tai Bogan, Esq.

“Satisfied.” Harry Damkar, Esq.

“Great speakers. Thank you.”

“Interesting and fun seminar. Good idea having state bar presenters, very helpful.” David Sanhaus, Esq.

“Excellent speakers. All were great. Thank you.”

“Mike Cavalluzzi was awesome!”


Additional Faculty to be Announced.

Jessica Agnich, Esq.
Principal/Certified Legal Specialist in Criminal Law
The Law Office of Jessica Agnich

Jessica Agnich is an experienced criminal defense attorney. Now located in San Mateo County, Jessica has represented over a thousand adult and juvenile clients in California. She has a reputation with judges, district attorneys, defense attorneys, and clients as a successful trial attorney and zealous advocate on behalf of her clients.

Jessica has been practicing law since 2005 and has handled every type of case from simple misdemeanors to serious murder charges. She has achieved Not Guilty verdicts and dismissals for charges ranging from domestic violence to murder. Jessica does not shy away from jury trial, when necessary, and is not afraid of difficult or serious cases. 

Jessica is a certified specialist in criminal law certified by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization. Certified specialists must demonstrate a competency in their area of practice that goes above and beyond that of the normal legal practitioner. The application process requires that the attorney pass a written examination and receive favorable evaluations by other attorneys and judges. Less than 500 of the over 250,000 attorneys in California are legal specialists in criminal law, and Jessica is one of only five criminal law specialists in San Mateo county. See the California State Bar website for additional information about legal specialization.

In addition to being a skilled advocate in court, Jessica always puts her clients first. She consistently brings commitment, compassion, and determination to the representation of her clients. 

Jessica has also served as faculty for the California Public Defenders Association trial skills academy, and volunteers at Golden Gate University School of Law for moot court and mock trial programs.

Garrick A. Byers, Esq.
Certified Legal Specialist in Criminal Law
Law Office of Garrick A. Byers

Garrick Byers has been a California Certified Specialist in Criminal Law since 1990.  He is currently a solo attorney focusing on indigent appeals.  Prior to opening his own law practice, Mr. Byers was with the Contra Costa Public Defender’s office and the Fresno County Public Defender’s office for twenty-nine years.

Garrick has tried more than 100 jury trials to verdict, from misdemeanors to homicides, and just about every type of case in between.  He has handled all other phases of thousands of all types of criminal cases from arraignment to pretrial proceedings, to trial sentencing, to probation violations, to appeals.  

In both Fresno and Contra Costa, Garrick handled motions, research, felony pre-trial writs, case staffing, court appearances on difficult and unusual cases, office-wide trainings, and similar tasks.  He was and is an “internal office consultant” and general “go to guy” on all types of cases that public defenders handle.

He is currently (2013) the First Vice President of the California Public Defenders Association (CPDA). He is also the Chair of the CPDA’s Ethics Committee and a member of the Legislative Committee.

Garrick received his JD from the Antioch School of Law (now Univ. of Dist. of Col. David A. Clarke School of Law), Washington D.C in 1979.

Garrick is the author of the only comprehensive treatise on Public Safety Realignment (AB 109), the 2011 massive revision of California’s felony sentencing laws.  His Realignment treatise is web-distributed by CPDA, California Continuing Education of the Bar, and linked-to by the California Courts, and many others.

Garrick speaks frequently at CPDA and other CLE events on jury trials, new criminal laws, sentencing, ethics, drug treatment programs, motions practice, discovery, pleas, and many other topics.

He is also a contributor to the CEB, California Criminal Law, Procedure and Practice, including three Chapters: “Public Records,” “Motion to Disclose Informant’s Identity, ”and “Trial Counsel’s Duties After Judgment” 2013 edition (with 2014 edition forthcoming) and previous editions (most annual) back to (depending on the chapter) 2005. 

Garrick previously authored and edited many articles related to criminal law and trials and sections in the Mathew Bender California Criminal Defense Practice reporter.

In 2012 Garrick received a Special Recognition Award from the California Public Defenders Association for his many contributions to Criminal Defense. 

George Mavris, Esq.

 Bio coming soon!

David Mugridge, Esq.
Principal/Certified Legal Specialist in Criminal Law
Law Office of David R. Mugridge

 Bio coming soon!

Dorian A. Peters, Esq.
Certified Legal Specialist in Criminal Law
Gagen, McCoy, McMahon, Koss, Markowitz & Raines

Dorian A. Peters is an East Bay native, born and raised in Berkeley. He began his education at Diablo Valley College in Pleasant Hill, and then transferred to UC Berkeley, where he double majored in political science and mass communications. Go Bears! Through UC Berkeley, he was able to serve as a press and policy intern in Congresswoman Barbara Lee’s office in Washington, D.C.

Dorian then traveled to Nashville, Tennessee, to attend Vanderbilt Law School, where he participated in the moot court and mock trial programs. He had the opportunity to intern in the chambers of U.S. District Court Judge Kenneth Hoyt in Houston, Texas, and he also worked as a law clerk for the Metropolitan Nashville Public Defender’s Office, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Nashville and the Contra Costa County District Attorney’s Office. Upon graduation, he become a prosecutor in the CCC District Attorney’s Office, where he tried about 35 cases to a jury and worked in several units.

One of the highlights of his career was a brief stint at the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation as part of the Employment Advocacy and Prosecution Team, where he investigated and litigated employee misconduct matters in front of the State Personnel Board. After that, he went into private practice, focusing mostly on criminal defense work, and recently joined the Gagen, McCoy, McMahon, Koss, Markowitz & Raines law firm, where he practices criminal defense and handles employment discipline issues involving misconduct or licensing.

He is active in many different parts of the Contra Costa County Bar Association. Currently, he serves as a committee member and a panelist on the Criminal Conflict Program, a volunteer fee arbitrator for both the CCCBA and the State Bar, and a CCCBA delegate to the California Conference of Bar Associations. Dorian participates in the Robert G. McGrath American Inn of Court and also served as a board member of the Barristers Section, where he assisted in the drafting of the current bylaws.

Outside of the CCCBA, he is a member of the Leadership Council for the nonprofit Center for Youth Development through Law, a pipeline program focused on exposing under-privileged youth to the legal system, and encouraging them to attend college and pursue careers as attorneys.

Erin Radekin, Esq.
Certified Legal Specialist in Criminal Law
Law Offices of Erin Radekin

Bio coming soon!


This program is in the planning stages. Please email us at info@pincusproed.com to get on our list and we will inform you when it is scheduled and available for registration.


CLE Credits

This program is in the planning stages. The agenda will mimic the CA Bar’s published list of testable topics. Please email us at info@pincusproed.com to get on our list and we will inform you when it is scheduled and available for registration.

Terms & Refund 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.

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.

For policies related to audio products, please select “I want a download or CD” on the right.

$575.00$700.00 each

In the works!


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