How to pursue LLM in USA
The LL.M. (Master of Laws) program is a one-year degree program that typically attracts students from all over the globe. The Graduate Program is interested in attracting intellectually curious and thoughtful candidates from a variety of legal systems and backgrounds and with various career plans. In USA, Master of Laws students include lawyers working in firms or NGOs, government officials, law professors, judges, diplomats, activists, doctoral students, business people, and others. The diversity of the participants in the LL.M. (Master of Laws) program contributes significantly to the educational experience of all students at the School.
The general admission requirements for a Master of Laws degrees are holding a relevant Bachelor’s. Some universities explicitly require only a Law Bachelor’s. Others are more flexible and accept undergraduate degrees in Social Sciences, Humanities which covers some Law courses. Some universities may accept diplomas in Engineering, Natural Sciences, Finances and so on – as long as the Master’s focuses on law practice in that field.
To summarize, applicants for admission to the LL.M. (Master of Laws) program must have completed a regular curriculum at an accredited college and/or law school, and must hold a professional degree from a law school by the time they begin the LL.M. program. Many LLM CAS–participating schools require that applicants have completed, or be in the process of completing, a first professional degree in law, be licensed to practice law, or have significant experience in legal practice. For students hailing from India, the requirement is 3-year Bachelor’s + Bachelor of Laws; integrated 5-year Bachelor of Laws. Bachelor of Laws is considered first
professional exam to be eligible to take the bar.
Applicants must also demonstrate sufficient proficiency with both written and spoken English. Although it is not expected all students who are not native English speakers to be perfectly fluent in English, students with serious English language limitations will have great difficulty coping with the demands of a new cultural, social and academic environment.
The universities and the law schools require official score reports of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) before admitting an applicant whose primary language is not English. Due to the reason mentioned above and the nature of the career to be pursued after graduation which involves significant degree of public speaking with confidence, the minimum score requirements are generally on the higher side.
The TOEFL or IELTS score becomes all the more important because most renowned universities do not require or accept the LSAT or GRE. So the score is a great opportunity to show your academic prowess.
All applicants are required to submit academic transcripts from all higher education institutions attended (this includes undergraduate, graduate (if applicable) and law school) for Master of Laws.
You must submit at least two and no more than four. These letters should come from academics or professionals. You must ensure that the letters come from someone who is able to truly speak to your qualities and ability to succeed in an elite and rigorous law program. Therefore, you should ask individuals that have firsthand experience working with you or as your supervisor.
You are required to submit an up to date resume or CV which details your educational and professional background. This should include name, address, email address, phone number, any academic honors you have received, scholarly publications, employment in law or related fields including employer, title, dates of employment, and description of duties, and membership in any professional societies.
All applicants are required to submit a 1-3 page personal statement (sometimes referred to as a letter of motivation). The personal statement should go beyond just the black and white already available to the committee in your transcripts and resume. This is your opportunity to tell the committee something about you that could not otherwise be known from your application materials. You should also showcase how you plan to leverage your experience here in the broader context of your personal and professional goals.
Previous work experience:
International universities place a lot of emphasis on work experience or volunteering in a relevant field. Ideally, you should have at least 2 years of relevant professional experience. This could also include research projects. This experience does not necessarily have to be in the legal sector. For example, for a Human Rights Law Master’s, you might be required to have experience within human rights organizations, whereas for a Commercial Law Masters you might be required experience in the business sector.
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