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Types of applications

Schools use a variety of overlapping nomenclature when describing their admission options, so students should always read the fine print prior to applying to any programs.

Regular (non-binding) admission - most common

  • Most law schools use rolling admission, offering admission continually from the time the application opens, usually around Sept. 1, until the class is full or the application deadline has passed.
  • Admission deadlines vary by school, and students should submit their applications as early as possible.
  • Admission deadlines vary by school, and students should submit their applications as early as possible once their materials are complete

Early (non-binding) admission

  • If a student applies by a preferred deadline, they will receive a decision earlier in the admission cycle

Early (binding) decision

  • Some schools offer students who are committed to entering their program a binding application option.
  • If an early decision applicant is accepted, the applicant must then turn down all acceptances from other schools and withdraw any remaining pending applications.
  • Students should look carefully at the terms of the early, binding application to determine whether or not applying to one would be in their best interest.