LLM in American Legal Studies

About the LLM in American Legal Studies

The LLM in American Legal Studies is designed as a general overview and is intended for foreign-trained lawyers who wish to become eligible to take a bar exam in the United States.

Seattle is a diverse and welcoming city that has much to offer prospective students. Located on the Pacific Rim, Seattle enjoys a stunning natural setting, with the Cascade Mountains to the east, Mt. Rainier to the south, and the Puget Sound and the Olympic Mountains to the west. The greater Seattle metropolitan area is a global hub for commerce and the technology industry.

English Language Requirements

International students must have a high degree of proficiency in spoken and written English. In American law schools, students participate actively in classroom discussions. Seattle University, in particular, focuses considerable attention on honing a student’s analytic, reading, and communications skills. At a minimum, applicants whose native language is not English and did not obtain a bachelor’s degree at a U.S. university or college must have achieved scores of at least 100 (internet-based), 600 (paper-based), or 250 (computer-based) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or a minimum 7.0 score on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).

The TOEFL may be waived for students whose first language is English, or who attended an educational institution in which English was the primary language of instruction, or who worked in an English-speaking environment for one year or more.

Curriculum

The LLM candidate must complete 24 credit hours. Students may pursue their course of study either full-time over a single year, or part-time over two years.

Individualized curriculum plans will be carefully designed in consultation with the program director, and in consideration of the requirements of the jurisdiction in which the applicant wishes to practice. All students enrolled in this program will be required to take:

  • Introduction to the American Legal System
  • Effective Legal Writing (online)
  • Bar Exam Strategies and Skills

Students who plan to sit for the Washington State Bar exam will need to complete the following additional courses to comply with Washington Admission to Practice Rule 3(b)(v):

  • Constitutional Law
  • Civil Procedure
  • Professional Responsibility

The remaining credits will be chosen from the first year curriculum and electives courses of interest to the student.

Application Requirements

To be eligible for admission to the LLM program, candidates must hold a JD degree or foreign equivalent.

Preferred application deadline: November 15 for spring applicants and June 15 for fall applicants.

Apply here using this form or apply on www.LSAC.org. In addition to this application form, applicants must submit:

  • Personal statement (1-2 pages). Please discuss your background, goals, how you plan to use your LLM degree, and any additional information you would like us to know.
  • Nonrefundable $60 (U.S.) application fee (waived for current Seattle U Law students and alumni)
  • A resume or C.V.
  • A list of three references (academic or professional references preferred but not required)
  • For attorneys admitted to practice in any jurisdiction, a Certificate of Good Standing from each such jurisdiction (need not be submitted with application but must be submitted prior to the start of classes)

The following items must be sent to the law school directly from the appropriate institutions:

  • Official transcripts from all academic institutions where you have studied law. American students do not need to send undergraduate transcripts. A certified translation must be attached if the transcript is not in English.
  • If English is not your first language, official TOEFL score report must be sent directly from ETC. TOEFL is waived for students whose first language is English, who attended an educational institution in which English was the primary language of instruction, or who worked in an English-speaking environment for one year or more.

The LSAT is not required.

Tuition and Fees

Financial Aid Program
Preferred deadline for financial aid is November 15 for spring applicants and June 15 for fall applicants.

Tuition for the LLM is $1,499 per credit. A nonrefundable tuition deposit of $250 deposit is applied to your first semester's tuition and ensures you a place in the entering class. The deposit is due one month after the date of admission.

Tuition is paid per term, and determined by the number of credits you are taking. You may pay tuition charges with financial aid, personal resources, and/or employer benefits. If you choose not to use financial aid or have remaining charges after financial aid is applied to your account, you may arrange a payment plan directly with the law school business office, (206) 398-4050, or through TuitionPay, an organization that provides an interest-free monthly installment payment plan.

There are no full tuition scholarships or funds for living expenses. Additionally, international students are ineligible for U.S. federal loans. Therefore all non-U.S. citizens are required to provide a Declaration of Finances to verify that they have adequate funds to attend law school. This is due prior to your enrollment. We will not be able to issue you an I-20 form for the student visa application until the Declaration of Finances has been received by the Admission Office. Please see this list of resources for help locating private loans to cover the cost of tuition and living expenses.