We invite you to apply to the youngest top law school in the nation – UCLA School of Law. The Office of Admissions is available to help first-year applicants experience a smooth and successful application process. We will begin accepting applications for Fall 2021 in early September through the LSAC online application service. Applications will be due by February 1, 2021.
Steps to Applying to the First Year Class
A. Application Requirements
All applicants for Fall 2021 should follow these application procedures:
Take the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) or the Graduate Records Exam (GRE) no later than January 31, 2021, if applying regular decision. Note the cut off dates for the LSAT and GRE are different for students applying to the Early Decision, Distinguished Scholars and Achievement Fellowship programs (see below). Complete information regarding the Standardized Test Requirement is below.
- Register with LSAC's Credential Assembly Service (CAS).
- Submit the following:
- Completed application.
- Personal statement (use an electronic attachment).
- Separate essay not to exceed two double-spaced typed pages.
- No less than 11-point font.
- Discuss any matters relevant to your ability to succeed in law school and the practice of law, and any attributes, experiences, or interests that would enable you to make a distinctive contribution to UCLA Law or the legal profession.
- Current résumé (use an electronic attachment).
- Two letters of recommendation (no more than two) submitted through the LSAC Letter of Recommendation Service are required.
- Official transcripts sent directly to LSAC. Applicants should not wait for fall grades before sending transcripts to LSAC. However, applicants must submit work completed after the initial registration to LSAC, as updated reports will be forwarded to the Law School Admissions Office. Accepted applicants will be required to have their undergraduate institution submit directly to UCLA School of Law a final transcript showing the award of a baccalaureate degree before classes begin in the fall semester.
- Nonrefundable application fee of $75. You may submit your application and pay the fee electronically via LSAC. You may also pay by check, money order, or international money order payable to the Regents of the University of California and include it with your signed Certification Letter.
- David J. Epstein Program in Public Interest Law and Policy Application, if applying to that program.
- Early Decision Program Agreement, if applying to the Binding Early Decision Program. The priority Early Decision deadline is November 16, 2020. Students applying priority Early Decision must take the LSAT or GRE by October 31, 2020. Applicants will be informed of their admissions decisions by the end of December 2020. Students applying Early Decision after November 16 must take the LSAT or GRE by January 31, 2021 and will receive decisions on a rolling basis.
- Distinguished Scholars Program Agreement, if applying to the Distinguished Scholars Program. The deadline is November 16, 2020 and applicants must take the LSAT or GRE no later than October 31, 2020.
- If applying to the Achievement Fellowship Program, applicants are required to include an additional one page essay describing in detail the obstacles they have overcome in life and why they are a strong candidate for the program. The deadline to apply to the Achievement Fellowship is January 4, 2021 and applicants must take the LSAT or the GRE no later than November 30, 2020. However, applicants taking the LSAT or GRE after these dates may still apply and be considered for any remaining Achievement Fellowships that are available.
- We do not require a dean's certification.
- Applications must be submitted on or before February 1, 2021.
B. Standardized Test Requirement
UCLA requires that students take a standardized test for admission—either the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) or the Graduate Records Exam (GRE). The LSAT or GRE must be taken no later than January 31, 2021 for students applying to the regular JD program.
Applicants to the Early Decision or Distinguished Scholars Programs must take the LSAT or GRE no later than October 31, 2020. Applicants to the Achievement Fellowship must take the LSAT or GRE no later than November 30, 2020.
Though we anticipate that most applicants will continue to apply with an LSAT score, UCLA Law does not have a preference in the admissions process for one test over another and will evaluate all applications holistically regardless of the test taken.
Students may choose which test to take; however please note the following guidelines:
- An applicant who takes both the LSAT and the GRE is required to submit all LSAT test scores from the last five years but may choose whether or not to submit their GRE score(s). However if the applicant elects to submit a GRE score in addition to the LSAT, the applicant must submit all GRE scores from the last five years.
- An applicant who only takes the GRE and not the LSAT must also submit all GRE scores from the last five years.
- GRE scores should be submitted directly to UCLA Law by the Educational Testing Service ("ETS"—the organization that administers the GRE) using UCLA Law's ETS school code 4837 and the department and major field code 5201.
- Applicants applying only with a GRE score are still required to subscribe to and utilize the LSAC Credential Assembly Service for the submission of transcripts and letters of recommendation.
Beginning June 3, 2019, the LSAT writing sample will not be conducted at the same time as the LSAT exam—it will be an on-demand writing exam administered online. (For full details please visit: https://www.lsac.org/lsat/taking-lsat/lsat-writing-faqs.) Applicants should be aware that their application cannot be transmitted to UCLA Law for evaluation without an LSAC writing sample. Note that we will review applications as soon as they are complete and at least one LSAT writing sample has been submitted. Unfortunately, we are not able to wait to review your application if you decide to take additional writing sample tests.
- C. Methods of Submitting Applications
D. Fee Waiver
Please view our fee waiver policy.
E. Credential Assembly Service (CAS)
The Credential Assembly Service (CAS) was developed to help participating schools collect and analyze data pertaining to the academic records of applicants. The law school report includes a year-by-year summary of units and grade-point averages (GPA), a cumulative GPA, LSAT score(s) (if applicable), and a copy of each transcript. All applicants, including those reapplying, those taking the GRE, and applicants from institutions that do not issue grades, are required to register with the Credential Assembly Service. A transcript from each college or university attended and listed on the registration form should be sent directly to LSAC's Credential Assembly Service in accordance with their instructions. The Credential Assembly Service will analyze and summarize the transcript(s). UCLA School of Law will request the LSAC Law School Report once the application is received.
Applicants should not wait for fall grades before sending transcripts to LSAC. However, applicants must submit work completed after the initial registration to LSAC, as updated reports will be forwarded to the Law School Admissions Office. Accepted applicants will be required to have their undergraduate institution submit directly to UCLA School of Law a final transcript showing the award of a baccalaureate degree before classes begin in the fall semester.
LSAT/Credential Assembly Service registration forms and other information may be obtained from the Law School Admission Council website or (215) 968-1001.
F. Letters of Recommendation
UCLA School of Law requires that applicants submit two letters of recommendation. At least one letter should be from someone familiar with the applicant's academic work, if at all possible. The Law School strongly prefers that letters be submitted through the LSAC Letter of Recommendation Service. This service is included with the Credential Assembly Service registration. Letters will be copied and sent to UCLA School of Law along with the LSAC Law School Report. To use this service, follow the directions for submitting letters outlined at LSAC.org.
G. Internationally-Educated Applicants
The UCLA School of Law requires that your transcripts be submitted through LSAC's Credential Assembly Service. This service is included in the Credential Assembly Service subscription fee. If you completed any post-secondary work outside the U.S. (including its territories) or Canada, you must use this service for the evaluation of your transcripts. The one exception to this requirement is if you completed the work through a study abroad, consortium, or exchange program sponsored by a U.S. or Canadian institution, and the work is clearly indicated as such on the home campus transcripts.
To use the Credential Assembly Service, log into your LSAC.org account and follow the instructions for registering for the service. Be sure to print out a Transcript Request Form for each institution and send it promptly to them. More time is usually required to receive international transcripts.
Questions about the Credential Assembly Service can be directed to LSAC at 215.968.1001 or LSACinfo@LSAC.org.
UCLA School of Law will request the applicant's law school report, including any LSAT score(s), from LSAC. All internationally-educated applicants must take the LSAT or the GRE but are not required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).
H. Change of Contact Information
If there is a change in the applicant's contact information after filing the application, the UCLA School of Law Office of Admissions must be notified by sending an e-mail with the applicant's name and LSAC Account Number to firstname.lastname@example.org or by writing to:
UCLA School of Law
Law Admissions Office
71 Dodd Hall
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1445
Applicants will be notified by e-mail when:
- the application has been received;
- the application has been marked complete; and
- when an admission decision has been made.
The Office of Admission should be advised of any change to the applicant's e-mail address. The majority of applicants will receive notification by the end of April 2021.
The School of Law considers requests to defer enrollment on a case-by-case basis. To apply, applicants should contact the Office of Admissions.
J. Joint Degree
Applicants to approved joint-degree programs must contact the appropriate graduate school or department to obtain its application and must meet that department's deadline. All J.D./Ph.D. in Philosophy applicants are advised to take the LSAT or GRE no later than November 30, 2020 and apply by January 10, 2021.
Applicants who reapply for admission must comply with the following procedures:
- Complete a current application
- Pay the nonrefundable application fee in the amount of $75. You may submit your application and pay the fee electronically via LSAC. You may also pay by check, money order, or international money order payable to the Regents of the University of California and include it with your signed Certification Letter.
- Have a valid LSAT or GRE score.
- Re-register with LSAC's Credential Assembly Service.
Note that the original application materials, including letters of recommendation, will remain on file. It is strongly suggested that a re-applicant submit an updated personal statement and résumé.
L. Fall 2021 Financial Aid Checklist for First-Year J.D. Applicants
- Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA); priority filing date is March 2, 2021.
- UCLA School of Law requires that both the student’s and parents’ information be provided on the FAFSA.
- The FAFSA can be obtained at www.fafsa.ed.gov. UCLA School of Law Code: 001315.
- All admitted students are considered for a Dean’s Scholarship. In determining the scholarship amount, both merit and financial need can be considered. All admitted students are provided access to the Law School Financial Need Application.