He took the Bar exam in 1996, after 8 tries he is now "Atty Popsy"

He took the Bar exam in 1996, after 8 tries he is now "Atty Popsy"




There is no other quote that fits in this situation but that of “Try and try until you succeed.”

This seems to be the battle cry of Bar passer Jaime Guerrero, he first took the Bar exam in 1996, He passed 24 years later, he is now being called “Atty. Popsy” by his son.


Guerrero, 58, is among the 2,103 examinees who passed among the 7,685 who took the
 2019 Bar examination last year.

Jaime Guerrero
(photo credit to owner)




The 58 year old Guerrero dream of becoming a lawyer was not diminished by failing the Bar exams for seven times.

This time, 8th is the charmer, but he had to go the longer harder route as in more than 20 years of trying to pass the exam he had to go back to school for a refresher course while being employed as a government employee in Bicol.
He first took the Bar exams after graduating in 1996 from the  law school of the University of Santo Tomas (formerly Aquinas University) in Legazpi city.


“My grades pushed me to try and try. When I got a rating of 74.85 in a previous exam, I worked harder,” Guerrero said.

Guerrero didn’t give up when he failed in 1996 and went on to take the bar exams again in 1997. His string of failures stretched, prompting him to take the exams in 1998, 2000, 2002, 2004, 2017 and finally, in 2019.

The Rules of Court of the Philippines provides that a bar aspirant may take the exam three times.


“After the third try, you need to take refresher and you can take the exam, then [if you fail again] another refresher,” said lawyer Mary Ailyne Zamora, dean of the UST-Legazpi College of Law.


Guerrero is a political science graduate, and currently is occupying a senior health program officer at the Department of Health regional office in Bicol.

He has five children, now all working adults. “When I first took the bar, they were still young. But this time, they were the ones who financed my [refresher] schooling,” he said.

Guerrero enrolled in special classes in 2017 and 2019 in UST-Legazpi and heeded the advice of some lawyers to stay focused and practice answering previous bar questions.


Guerrero shares that he was even ignored by a noted law dean for an online coaching program that he applied for. The dean had known he repeatedly failed the exams. But he persisted. “It’s never too late for me. If you don’t even try, you will never succeed,” he said.







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Report from PDI


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