Dean talking to students at orientation

Admissions FAQs

Admission Deadlines, Requirements, and Statistics

What are your 2015-16 J.D. admission deadlines?

  • September 1, 2015 – J.D. applications become available

  • November 15, 2015 – Deadline for early decision applicants

  • January 1, 2016 – Transfer/visiting applications become available

  • July 15, 2016 – J.D. application deadline

August 1, 2016 – Transfer application deadline

What are your admission requirements?

Full details on the how-to-apply page.

How can I tell if my undergraduate university or law school is accredited?

The U.S. Department of Education offers a search form at

Does the Law School require work experience before applying for admission?

No. However, approximately 70% of our entering classes have work experience before enrolling. The average length of work experience is 2-4 years.

Are deferrals granted if I’m accepted but want to attend a year later?

Deferrals are not routinely granted and are reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Admitted students may contact the Director of Admissions to request a deferral of up to one year.

What is the profile of your last entering class?

Click here for the most recent profile.

Are there minimum test or GPA requirements for admission?

No. No minimum score requirements or cut-off scores are used for the LSAT scores or GPA scores.

Will other test scores be accepted in lieu of the LSAT score?

No. Applicants must register with LSAC and have LSAT test scores sent (along with other admission requirements) to be considered for admission. This requirement is NOT waived for international applicants or international lawyers.

Can I take a course at the Law School if I’m not a currently enrolled student?

All students in Law School classes must be graduate level, degree-seeking students at either the Law School or another graduate school at the University of Minnesota. Enrollment for other students will be subject to availability and the approval of both the professor and the registrar.

Tuition, Scholarships, and Financial Aid

What are the current tuition and fees?

A complete list of current tuition and fees can be found here.

Are scholarships merit-based or need-based?

Scholarships are based on the entirety of the application for admission.

How do I apply for scholarships and what are the criteria for scholarship awards?

All admitted students are reviewed for scholarship award at the time of acceptance. No separate application for scholarship is required. Scholarships range from $5,000 to full-tuition waivers, good for each of a student’s three years. Applicants are encouraged to pursue scholarships outside of the Law School. A suggested directory is found at

For more information and frequently asked questions about scholarships, click PDF iconhere.

How do I apply for other financial aid?

For complete financial aid information, click here. For further financial aid information and assistance, please contact Jim Parker in the Office of Student Finance at 612-626-0750 or

What are important dates for financial aid?

The FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) may be submitted after January 1. Admitted students will receive an estimate of their financial aid package around the time of admission. Final tuition rates for the academic year will be determined in July and admitted students can expect to receive their final financial aid package by early-August.

How do I apply for private loans?

International Applicants

Is the TOEFL required and is there a minimum score for admission?

International applicants, whose English is a second language, need to submit a current TOEFL or IELTS score to LSAC. (Please see LSAC instructions regarding reporting of these scores.) This requirement is waived if you have received an undergraduate or graduate degree from an accredited U.S. institution. This requirement may also be waived if you received an undergraduate degree from an international institution for which English is the official language and submit documentation to that effect. This could be, for example, a letter from the Registrar of the institution. The Law School requires no minimum TOEFL score for admission. However, a score of 630 or higher on the pencil-and-paper test, a score of 267 or higher on the computer-based test, or a score of 109 or higher on the internet-based test is looked upon by the admissions committee positively. Earning these scores does not guarantee admission.

As an international student, will I be considered for scholarships and financial aid?

All applicants, regardless of international status, are considered for merit scholarships. Scholarships are based on admission applications and are awarded at the time of admission. For complete financial aid information, click here. For further financial aid assistance and information, please contact Jim Parker in the Office of Student Finance at 612-626-0750 or

If I’m admitted to Minnesota Law and have an I-20 from another law school, can my I-20 paperwork be changed to Minnesota Law?

Possibly; please contact the admissions office to discuss your specific situation and timing.

If I’m admitted, how do I get my I-20?

If you’re admitted, the process to receive your I-20 begins when you make your seat deposit. After you make your seat deposit, you will receive an email from the Office of Admissions, along with the necessary forms. The email will explain what you need to do to start the process; please read this email carefully. When the Admissions Office has received all of your necessary documents, they will process everything and send an I-20 request to International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) to have an I-20 generated and sent to you. This process can take 2-4 weeks after your documents are received by the Admissions Office.

Where can I get more information?

For more information or for answers to specific questions related to individual circumstances, please refer to the ISSS website:

Early Decision Program

Do you have an early decision program?

Yes. The application requirements, process, and review of early action applicants are identical to the regular admission process, except that a decision is guaranteed by December 1.

Is admission through early decision binding?

Yes. Applicants commit themselves to matriculating at Minnesota if admitted pursuant to the early decision program. An early decision applicant may apply to other law schools on a non-binding basis, but once admitted to the University of Minnesota as an early decision candidate, the applicant must notify the other programs and immediately withdraw all other law school applications. No new law school applications may be initiated. The University of Minnesota reserves the right to provide other law schools with the names of applicants admitted to the University of Minnesota under the binding early decision program.

How do I ensure my application is included for early decision?

Complete the separate application titled, “First Year Admission Binding Early Decision Agreement.”

Transfer and Visiting Students

How do I apply to transfer?

For the transfer student application procedure, click here.

Can an LL.M. student apply to transfer into the J.D. program?

Only those students with an LL.M. degree from the University of Minnesota are eligible to apply as J.D. transfers. In order to apply to transfer into our J.D. program, an LL.M. student must complete the same procedure as other transfer students.

How do I apply to be a visiting student?

Click here for more information. Visiting students attend classes at Minnesota for up to one year and are not eligible for a J.D. degree from Minnesota.

Are there minimum requirements for transfer admission?

No. There are no GPA, rank requirements or cut-off scores used in the admissions process.

How are transfer admission decisions made?

The Admissions Committee is composed of Law School faculty and is dedicated to an objective, sensitive and efficient application review process. The Committee will carefully analyze the entirety of every applicant’s file. This includes a completed application, a personal statement and resume. A letter of good standing, official law school transcript and letter of recommendation from a law school professor should be sent directly to us (or LSAC) from the school/recommender. A completed LSDAS file of undergraduate work and test scores will also be evaluated. While decisions are made based on an overall assessment of all materials, the Admissions Committee is primarily concerned with an applicant’s performance during the first year of law school. The Committee will consider a variety of factors, such as work experience, career goals, extracurricular activities, ability in languages other than English, positions of leadership, community or public service, interest in interdisciplinary study, graduate school experience, racial and ethnic background, unusual life experiences, disability and economic disadvantage. The Committee also may consider factors that contribute to greater diversity in the student body, including but not limited to those set out in the University Equal Opportunity Policy.

How many transfer students are admitted each fall?

The number of transfer students admitted each year varies.

Can transfer applicants petition for journals?

Yes, click here. The difficulty or ease of petitioning tends to depend on the time one dedicates to the process and his or her comfort with the Bluebook. Applicants applying by the journal consideration deadline will be given two weeks for the petition process. All petitioners are evaluated blindly.

What is the minimum number of credits required to transfer?

Transfer applicants have completed the equivalent of one year of full-time student at another law school.

How many credits will transfer?

A formal evaluation of credits is completed by student services after admission is offered. Typically, students transfer the equivalent of one year of full-time study. In order to receive a diploma from the University of Minnesota Law School, a transfer student must complete at least two thirds of his/her credits here.

How will my law school GPA be calculated?

The GPA from your current law school will not be factored into your GPA at the University of Minnesota Law School.

What are the scholarship opportunities for transfer students?

Unfortunately, we are unable to offer scholarships to transfer students at this time.

Can transfer students participate in OCI?

The OCI process is the same for transfer students. Admitted transfer students who matriculate will work with our Career Center to participate in OCI as would any other rising 2L.

Visiting, Interviewing, and Contacting the Law School

Can I visit the Law School?

The University of Minnesota Law School welcomes visits by admitted and prospective students. Admitted students are encouraged to visit the Admitted Student Website or contact the Office of Admissions directly to schedule a visit, and all visitors are encouraged to make an appointment two weeks in advance of their visit.

Prospective students are encouraged to attend one of our information sessions. Each session includes a presentation by a member of the admissions staff, a tour of the Law School guided by a current student, and an opportunity to sit in on a class (approximately 3 hours total).

To register for an information session, click here. If you are unable to attend one of our information sessions, self-guided tours are available Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Do you have interviews for applicants?

No. An interview is not part of our admissions process and a visit with our admissions staff will have no bearing on your application. Applicants are encouraged, however, to visit the Law School so that they are able to make the best possible decision if admitted.

Can I contact a current student?

Yes. Current students are often present for information sessions. If you would like to talk further with a current student, please email your request to the Office of Admissions at and we will ask a student to contact you.

Will representatives from the University of Minnesota Law School visit my school or attend a law school fair near me?

Click here to see our recruiting calendar.

Residency and Reciprocity

How do I establish residency?

All residency decisions are made by the University of Minnesota Residency Office, not the Law School. Although all residency requests are reviewed by the Residency Office on a case-by-case basis, factors that have been known to help establish residency include:

  • Employment and paying taxes in Minnesota
  • Owning a home in Minnesota
  • A Minnesota driver’s license
  • Having a spouse or partner also living and working in Minnesota

For questions regarding residency, contact Kay Anderson in the UMN Residency Office at 612-625-6330 or

How does reciprocity work?

Resident tuition is offered to qualifying residents of South Dakota, Wisconsin, and Manitoba. For questions about reciprocity, the student’s home state makes the reciprocity determination.

  • Wisconsin residents should contact the Wisconsin Reciprocity Office at 608-267-2209 or, or the State of Wisconsin Higher Education Aids Board, PO Box 7885, Madison, WI 53707.
  • South Dakota residents should contact the Reciprocity Program at 605-688-4497 or Box 2201, Brookings, SD 57007.
  • Manitoba residents should contact the UMN Resident Classification and Reciprocity Office at 612-625-6330 or

Degrees, Curriculum, Institutes, Journals, Moot Courts, Library, Clinics, and International Programs

What degrees does the Law School offer?

  • Juris Doctor (J.D.)
  • Masters in Patent Law (M.S.P.L) for scientists and engineers
  • LL.M. in Patent Law for U.S. lawyers

For lawyers outside the U.S.:

  • Masters of American Law (LL.M)
  • Masters of Business Law (LL.M.)
  • Juridical Studies (S.J.D.)

Below is a sampling of dual and joint degrees:

  • J.D./M.B.A.
  • J.D./M.P.A.
  • J.D./M.A.
  • J.D./M.P.P.
  • J.D./M.B.S.
  • J.D./M.B.T.
  • J.D./M.U.R.P.
  • J.D./M.S.
  • J.D./Ph.D.
  • J.D./M.D.
  • J.D./M.P.H.
  • J.D./M.H.A.

More information at

What is the curriculum and what are degree requirements for a J.D. at the University of Minnesota Law School?

What journals, research institutes and moot courts are offered at the Law School?

Can a law student take classes in other graduate programs at the University of Minnesota?

Yes. Law students may take up to 6 credits at the graduate level outside of the Law School. An exception to this rule is foreign languages, where law students can take up to 3 credits in introductory level classes with approval by the Dean of Students if they have taken no prior classes in that language.

What international study program opportunities are available?

The University of Minnesota Law School offers a wide selection of semester exchange programs, and maintains study-exchange relationships with at least nine foreign universities. Students can also study abroad through other ABA-accredited law school programs if approved by the Dean of Students. Click here for more information.

Tell me about the University of Minnesota Law Library.

The University of Minnesota Law Library is one of the largest law libraries in the United States. Students have access to the Law Library 24 hours per day. Visit

Tell me about the law clinics at the Law School.

The University of Minnesota Law School boasts one of the largest and most admired clinical programs of any law school in the country. After completing first-year courses, students at the Law School are permitted to represent clients under the State of Minnesota’s Student Practice Rule. Supervision is provided by our experienced clinical faculty. Click here for a full list of our clinics and their features.

What concentrations does the Law School offer?

Business Law, Civil Litigation, Criminal Justice, Environmental & Energy Law, Health Law & Bioethics, Human Rights Law, Intellectual Property & Technology Law, International Law, and Labor & Employment Law. For full information, click here.

Do you offer summer classes?

Yes. The University of Minnesota Law School offers a limited selection of summer classes each year. The maximum course load for the summer is 8 credits. Click here for a course schedule and more information.

Do you offer a part-time or night program?

No. We have only a full-time day program. Limited classes (some offered at night) are also available during the summer.

Housing, Student Life, and Student Activities

Do you have on-campus housing for law students or other recommendations?

Very limited on-campus housing is available for law students. More information available at

Admitted students will receive a housing guide with detailed housing information and contact information for many local apartments and other housing options.

What is the average age of students at the Law School?

The average age of entering students at the Law School is 25.

Please tell me about student life at the Law School.

For an overview of life in the Twin Cities, student organizations, and other student opportunities, click here.

Faculty, Careers, and Accreditation

How can I learn more about the distinguished faculty at the Law School?

Click here.

Please tell me more about your Career Center.

The University of Minnesota Law School Career Center is available to admitted students, current students and alumni. It is a full-service center, providing all the tools necessary for career development.

What is the Law School’s accreditation status?

The Law School was established in 1888 as a charter member of the Association of American Law Schools and is accredited by the American Bar Association. For additional information visit
You may also contact the Council at:
Office of the Consultant on Legal Education /
Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar
American Bar Association
321 N. Clark Street, 21st Floor
Chicago, IL 60654
Phone: (312) 988-6738
Fax: (312) 988-5681

Minnesota Advantage Program (MAP)

How many students will the University of Minnesota Law School accept under this program?

Under the new ABA rule, the Law School may admit no more than 10% of the entering class under this program.

What are my odds of admission through MAP?

The Admissions Committee considers all applications on a holistic assessment of the entire application and required materials.

What if I haven’t taken the necessary standardized tests?

Applicants must take one of the referenced standardized tests and score in the top 15 percent.

Is this a new program?

Due to a recent change in American Bar Association (ABA) rule in 2014, the Law School offers this program to a very limited number of currently enrolled U of M students (undergraduate or graduate) with strong academic records and proven outstanding performance on standardized tests.

If I provide my test score, will the Law School compute whether or not I was in the top 15%?

No; you must provide an official copy of your standardized test report showing that your score was in the top 15%.

If I don’t get admitted to MAP, can I re-apply for regular admission to the University of Minnesota Law School?

Yes. If you are not admitted through this program, you may immediately begin re-applying through the regular J.D. admissions application process. You will need to fulfill all the requirements to apply, including taking the LSAT, registering through the LSAC Credential Assembly Service (CAS) and pay the appropriate registration fees. However, as an applicant to MAP, your application fee to the regular J.D. admissions process will be waived.

Can I still apply to other law schools?

Yes, but you will likely have to take the LSAT to complete first-year or transfer applications for other law schools.

Am I able to defer my enrollment if admitted through MAP?

Deferrals are considered on a case-by-case basis. While we understand special circumstances may arise, if you are planning to defer when applying we recommend applying through the regular J.D. admissions program when you are ready.

What if I’ve already taken the LSAT?

Once you take or if you’ve already taken the LSAT, you no longer qualify for this program. However, you would be eligible to apply through the regular admissions process at the University of Minnesota Law School.

Are there any requirements for letters of recommendations?

The Admissions Committee requires two letters of recommendation (maximum of four) written by University of Minnesota instructors and/or pre-law advisor (please see instructions at LSAC). Recommenders should be able to adequately and thoughtfully comment on your ability and experience as a successful student, problem solver, work ethic, and ability to work in a team, among other character traits.

Contact Information

University of Minnesota Law School

Walter F. Mondale Hall | 229 19th Avenue South | Minneapolis, MN 55455

P: 612-625-1000

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