FAQs: Transfer Students

I have already completed two (2) years of law school.  Can I still apply to transfer to the University of Chicago Law School for my third year?

Unless you have received permission from the Admissions Committee to do so, you may not apply to transfer to the University of Chicago Law School for just your third year of law school.  For those that receive permission to apply, you will still be required to complete two years of legal studies at the Law School.  As noted below, you will only be able to transfer up to 40 credit hours towards your J.D. degree at the Law School and you will not be able to register for classes you have already taken at your home school.  For those who are interested in spending all or a portion of their third academic year of law school at UChicago, we recommend that you look into applying for our program for Visiting Students.

I am a non-U.S. citizen that has received an LL.M. degree at a U.S. institution and/or a law degree from a foreign university.  May I apply as a transfer student?

Yes, you may apply as a student with advanced standing and transfer to complete your second and third year in the J.D. program.

If I apply as an advanced standing transfer student, do I have to take the LSAT?

Unless you completed your LL.M. degree at the University of Chicago Law School, you must take and report at least one (1) LSAT score.  

I am currently enrolled in a part-time law school program.  May I apply as a transfer student?

Unless you have received permission from the Admissions Committee to do so, you may not apply to transfer to the University of Chicago Law School.  If you are interested in discussing your particular situation with a member of the Admissions Committee, please contact the Admissions Office at admissions@law.uchicago.edu.

Will I be able to take advantage of On-Campus Interviewing as a transfer student?

The Admissions Committee will issue decisions on both Early Decision and Regular Decision transfer applications with sufficient time to allow our incoming transfer students to participate in our On-Campus Interviewing program and bid for fall interviews. On-Campus Interviews will take place in mid-August.

How much credit will I receive for the grades earned during my 1L year at my current law school?

Transfer students may receive up to 40 credit hours towards their JD degree at the Law School (which is equal to what University of Chicago law students complete in their first year).   Upon receipt of the transfer student's final official transcript from their previous school, the Office of the Registrar will issue a letter to the transfer student describing both the total number of transfer credits accepted and the transfer student's specific graduation requirements.  Transfer students are eligible for graduation with honors based upon academic performance in the second and third years of law school at UChicago.

When would I register for fall classes?

University of Chicago students do not register for Autumn Quarter classes until the week before classes begin in late September, and therefore transfer students are not at a disadvantage in selecting classes. Because we are on the quarter system and do not begin classes until late September, admitted transfer students typically have an additional three to four weeks to prepare to attend UChicago.

Are transfer students permitted to join one of the legal journals or participate in one of the legal clinics?

Transfer students are eligible for membership on one of the Law School's three student-edited journals. Transfer students may obtain journal membership through the summer writing competition or the Topic Access Program, which is available to all 2L and 3L students. To learn more about how to participate in the summer writing competition or the Topic Access Program, please refer to this memo prepared by The Law Review (PDF). For those seeking journal membership through the summer writing competition, please review the Law Review memo carefully as it provides important information on the dates of the writing competition. The summer writing competition is open to applicants, including those who intend to apply and have not done so, as well as those who have applied, but have yet to receive a decision on their application. The summer writing competition usually takes place during the early part of June. If you are interested in competiting in the summer writing competition, please email Annette C. Moore (acmoore@uchicago.edu), Associate Director of Admissions, to obtain the necessary materials to participate. Please note: participation in the summer writing competition prior to receiving an offer of admission will not guarantee that you will be admitted to the University of Chicago Law School. You will not be able to accept any offer of membership to a journal (if one is extended) until you have been offered admission to the Law School.

Incoming transfer students are also eligible to participate in the Law School's clinical programs.

Are transfer students eligible for financial aid and/or scholarships?

The tuition for the 2015-2016 academic year is $56,916. Transfer students are not eligible for scholarship aid, but will be able to apply for federal and private loans to cover the cost of attendance. The University of Chicago Student Loan Administration processes and disburses loans for our students.

Will I be able to apply for and participate in the Doctoroff Business Leadership Program?

Unfortunately the Doctoroff Business Leadership Program is a 3-year program that requires a 3-year commitment.  Thus, at this time we are unable to accommodate students that transfer to the Law School in their second year.  However, the inclusion of this new program at the Law School will make available to all law students a series of core business courses taught by UChicago Booth faculty. 

When does the Admissions Committee release decisions?

We begin our review of applications in the spring.  Applicants to the Early Decision Transfer Program will receive decisions by the end of May.  Applicants to the Regular Decision Transfer Program will receive decisions in July.  The timing between the release of decisions and transitioning to the Law School is fairly quick, but there is sufficient time to allow our incoming transfer students to participate in our On-Campus Interviewing program, bid for fall interviews and to bid for fall classes.

How can I check the status of my application? 

The best way to check the status of your application is by monitoring your "Current Status" on our Online Status Checker. After we receive your application, the Admissions Office will send an email indicating that your application has been received. This email will also contain your log-in and password for the Online Status Checker. We will send all emails to the email address that you provided on your application.  Therefore, please make sure that you have provided a valid personal email address that you check frequently instead of a university email address. Many university servers filter out our emails before they even make it to the spam folder.  If you are not receiving email notifications, please email admissions@law.uchicago.edu.

How will I be notified of my decision?

Consistent with our paperless admissions process, the Admissions Committee will send decision notifications by email and will also update the Online Status Checker. Please read more about our decision notification procedures.

As a transfer student, will I be able to take advantage of clerkship opportunities available to UChicago law students?

Transfer students are welcome to participate in all clerkship programs offered at the University of Chicago Law School. Clerkship postings and hiring are at the discretion of the judges, as they decide when to post positions, interview applicants, and extend offers. Students can find more information on federal clerkship hiring via the Online System for Clerkship Application and Review (OSCAR).  Students obtain access to OSCAR in the summer before the 2L year.  Students can find more information on state court clerkship hiring on individual court websites.

Since transfer students will receive their first set of University of Chicago Law School grades in January, the Office of Career Services (OCS) recommends that transfer students interested in applying for post-graduate clerkships prior to that time secure three recommenders from their 1L law school (such as professors who supported your application to transfer) and/or your legal summer employer(s). Once transfer students have University of Chicago Law grades, students can start to ask University of Chicago Law School faculty for letter of recommendation support.  OCS supports students and alumni in all phases of the clerkship application process and will present information to the transfer students on clerkships at Transfer Orientation.