Student Affairs at UMN Law

How to Apply

J.D. Applications

All J.D. applications are available online beginning September 1 through the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC) website. Our Early Decision application deadline is December 31. Our Regular application deadline is June 1.

J.D. Regular & Early Decision application process

Eligible candidates for admission to the J.D. program must have completed their Bachelor's degree, or be in the final year of a Bachelor's degree program. The Bachelor's degree must be awarded by an accredited U.S. college or university or be an equivalent degree from a recognized non-U.S. institution.

Admissions decisions are made on a rolling basis, and priority consideration for scholarship awards is March 1. 

Typically, it may take up to 8 weeks for decisions to be made in accordance with the following timeline:

  • Regular JD applicants will begin to receive decisions in early January.
  • Early Decision applicants will begin to receive decisions in mid-November.

In order to enroll a highly qualified, diverse class each year, the Admissions Committee conducts a holistic review of each applicants' materials and considers factors such as student engagement and leadership, professional experience, writing ability, community service, and references.

In addition to a bar examination, there are character, fitness, and other qualifications for admission to the bar in every U.S. jurisdiction. Applicants are encouraged to determine the requirements for any jurisdiction in which they intend to seek admission by contacting the jurisdiction. Addresses for all relevant agencies are available through the National Conference for Bar Examiners.

Early Decision Program

Candidates who have determined that the University of Minnesota Law School is their first choice may submit an application to the Early Decision program. This program is binding; therefore, applicants admitted through the program commit themselves to matriculating at Minnesota Law, withdrawing all applications at other law schools, and not initiating new applications after being admitted to the Law School. Early Decision applicants receive the same scholarship consideration as regular candidates; if not admitted through Early Decision, students may be considered for regular admission at the discretion of the Admissions Committee.

Admissions decisions will begin mid-November for Early Decision applicants who submitted their application between September 1 and November 15. If you submit your Early Decision application after November 15, your application will be reviewed on a rolling basis within 2-3 weeks. The early decision application deadline is December 31.  All Early Decision applicants will receive a decision by January 15.

International Applicants

Applicants receiving their undergraduate degree from institutions outside the United States must submit their transcripts to the CAS for evaluation. A valid TOEFL or IELTS score (no more than 2 years old) must also be submitted to the CAS; however, this requirement is waived if an undergraduate or graduate degree has been earned in the United States. We do not have a minimum TOEFL score.

Questions about the J.D. Credential Assembly Service can be directed to LSAC at 215-968-1001, or A Foreign Credential Evaluation will be completed by the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers, and the evaluation will be incorporated into your CAS report.

Application Components

Application Form

All applicants are required to submit their application electronically through the Law School Admission Council (LSAC).

Application Fee

The nonrefundable application fee is $60 and is paid via credit card through LSAC when submitting the application. Applicants who cannot afford to pay the fee may fill out the Fee Waiver Request form.

Character and Fitness

You are required to answer two Character & Fitness related questions on our application.  After law school matriculation, all states require bar exam applicants to establish their character and fitness to practice law. Bar applicants should carefully review these requirements for the state in which they intend to practice, available at Character and Fitness Investigations through the National Conference of Bar Examiners website.

Registration with Credential Assembly Service (CAS)

All applicants, including international, must first register with the Credential Assembly Service through the LSAC website. The service will act as a repository for academic transcripts, testing scores, and letters of recommendation. CAS will summarize your transcripts and send them to each law school to which you apply.  We do not waive the CAS report fee.


Once registered with CAS, applicants must contact every previous college or university attended (even if a degree was not earned) to request a transcript be sent directly to CAS. Universities and other educational institutions should send transcripts to:

Law School Admission Council
P.O. Box 2000-M
Newtown, PA 18940-0993

Law School Admission Test (LSAT)

Applicants are required to take the Law School Admission Test (LSAT). The LSAT score is considered current for five years. The LSAT requirement will not be waived for any applicant. If multiple scores are available, the highest score will be used for review of your application. If you intend to retake the test after you have submitted your application and wish to have your application held until the newest score is available, please submit an addendum making this request with your application or email International students also must have completed a post-secondary degree at an English-speaking institution OR must submit the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). For more information, visit the TOEFL website.

Letter of Recommendation

One letter of recommendation is required and must be submitted through CAS. The Law School will accept a maximum of two letters.

The letters should be from persons in an academic setting who are personally familiar with an applicant’s work and can attest to his or her ability to enter a competitive professional program. If an applicant has been out of college for more than two years, letters from an employer may be submitted instead. Letters from family friends or personal acquaintances are discouraged.

Personal Statement

The varied backgrounds and exceptional talents of our students contribute tremendously to the quality of the education at the University of Minnesota Law School. Through the personal statement, the Admissions Committee seeks insight into the abilities, motivation and experiences of an applicant, as well as an assessment of writing ability. Your personal statement (two pages, double spaced) should articulate significant achievements, professional goals, and reasons for pursuing a law degree. It is also helpful to the Committee to discuss specific interest in the University of Minnesota Law School (you may attach a supplemental statement for this, if you prefer).


Applicants should include a detailed résumé with their application. The résumé should contain work history during college and since college graduation, including paid and unpaid employment. Resumes should also include academic or professional honors, co-curricular activities and community service, or hobbies and special interests.  There is no page limit to resumes we accept.


Applicants may also submit one or more supplemental statements (one page, double-spaced) to highlight diversity perspectives and/or demonstrated commitment to racial justice/equity, explain absences or breaks in academic history, discuss any obstacles or adversity you overcame, or present other matters that may be of importance to the Admissions Committee.

Optional Video Interview

Applicants are strongly encouraged to participate in our pre-recorded interview process, which provides an additional opportunity for you to introduce yourself to the committee. Priority consideration will be given to candidates who participate. Interview details will be sent via email about two weeks after your application has been submitted. Please watch your inbox for this important email.


In this video, Director of Admissions Robin Ingli provides an overview of the application and admission process at the University of Minnesota Law School. The videos below cover other key aspects of the admission process and Minnesota Law life.

Other webinars:


As required by Title IX, the University does not discriminate on the basis of sex in any of its education programs or activities, including in admissions and employment. Inquiries about the application of Title IX can be directed to the University’s Title IX Coordinators or to the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights. Please see the University of Minnesota’s Title IX Statement and the University’s policy for information about: (1) how to contact the Title IX Coordinators on the University’s campuses; (2) how to report or file a formal complaint of sexual harassment, gender-based harassment, sexual assault, stalking or relationship violence; and (3) the University’s procedures for responding to reports and formal complaints.