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Financial Considerations

Applicants to law school should prepare to incur significant debt because law schools are expensive.  The majority of law students must borrow to pay for their studies because federal and state grants are limited.  Therefore it is important that an applicant has good plan for funding his or her law school.

Law schools also offer scholarships to the most desirable candidates.  The scholarships may be awarded solely on merit or on financial need, or awarded on a combination of merit and need.

According to the standards prescribed by the American Bar Association for law school admissions and student services, “a law school shall take reasonable steps to minimize student loan defaults, including provision of debt counseling at the inception of a student’s loan obligations and prior to graduation.

According to a new report of Government Accountability Office (GAO) on law school tuition fees, the median tuition and fees for the 2007-2008 school year, in 2009 dollars, was $14,461 for in-state students at public universities, $27,383 for out-of-state students at public universities, and $33,042 at private universities.  Meanwhile, the average debt for graduates of private law schools has risen from around $75,000 in 2001-02 to $91,506 in 2007-08.  In the same time period, the average debt for graduates of public law schools rose from around $50,000 to $71,436.

Inside Financial Considerations