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UNC recommends that all applicants register with the Law School Admission Council (LSAC) for its Credential Assembly Service to translate, process, authenticate, and transmit academic records and transcripts, letters of recommendation, and TOEFL/IELTS English language scores. This service is designed to save you time and money if you intend to apply to a number of U.S. graduate law programs. If you use this service, you only have to supply your official transcripts and other educational records one time, to LSAC, no matter how many schools you intend to apply to.

The application deadline is April 30.

Checklist for LL.M. Applicants

Applicants must submit:

  1. Completed application form.
  2. Official transcripts from all colleges, universities and law schools attended. If not originally in English, all transcripts must be officially translated into English.
  3. Two letters of recommendation.
  4. If English is not your native language, an official TOEFL or IELTS test score.
  5. A personal statement describing your background, qualifications, and interest in obtaining an LL.M. degree. In addition, a resume or CV and writing sample composed in English may be submitted.
  6. The application fee ($75) can be paid online.
  7. Financial Certification of full program funding, which must be submitted before formal admission of an international LL.M. student. [Due to SEVIS time constraints for the submission of information, this document is posted at the end of October.]

Students accepted to the LL.M. program prior to April 1, must submit a non-refundable deposit of $250 by April 2 to reserve a place in the LL.M. program. Those applicants accepted after April 1, will be given a date in their admission letter detailing the deadline date for submission of their initial seat deposit. An additional $100 non-refundable confirming deposit is required by July 1. Go to https://admitted.law.unc.edu/, click on the left-hand side link for Seat Deposit Payments and follow instructions.

Applications and accompanying materials can be completed in hard copy and submitted by mail directly to UNC. If so, all materials are to be submitted directly to:

UNC LL.M. Program in United States Law
Beverly A. Sizemore, Ph.D., Director
160 Ridge Road, CB #3380
Chapel Hill, N.C. 27599-3380 (USA)

Application Form Instructions

On the application form, please list information about admission to practice law in any jurisdiction and detailed legal experience, as well as any occupational experience deemed relevant to your interest in the LL.M. degree and your potential use of the LL.M. degree in the future. While practice experience is preferred, it is not a requirement of admissions. Outstanding applicants without such experience will receive full consideration.

Applicants are required to certify that they have not been subject to academic or professional discipline or been convicted of any crime other than a minor traffic offense. Similar questions are asked of all entering J.D. students to help ensure all UNC law graduates uphold the highest standards of ethical behavior.

Official Academic Transcripts from all Colleges, Universities and Law Schools Attended

Official transcripts must be submitted from all colleges, universities and law schools from which you received degrees. They may be submitted to UNC by LSAC CAS. If the LSAC CAS is not used, the applicant's transcript is to be sent by the foreign educational institution or applicant directly to UNC using the Transcript Request Form. Transcripts must be in English or accompanied by a certified English translation if the original transcript was not in English. Transcripts or an accompanying report must contain your class standing, an official approximation of the standing, or an official statement that class standing information cannot be provided.

The Admissions Committee strongly recommends that applicants use the LSAC Credential Assembly Service, but other academic evaluation services may be used - World Educational Services (WES) and Educational Credential Evaluators (ECE). These services translate the academic records into English and summarize degrees conferred, courses taken and grades received and help provide a uniform basis for evaluation.

One of the transcripts must show that you have received a university degree in law (the equivalent of a J.D. or LL.B. degree) from an accredited educational institution outside the United States. This is a first degree in law and in many cases is an LL.B. degree.

Two Letters of Recommendation

Two letters of recommendation (in English) from individuals who are acquainted with your academic or professional abilities are required. The Admissions Committee suggests that at least one of the recommenders be able to describe your legal academic performance, such as faculty members who advised you, research supervisors or instructors familiar with your academic abilities and promise in advanced legal studies. LSAC CAS can be used by the applicant for the submission of recommendation letters to the selected school(s). If LSAC CAS is not being used, then the Applicant Recommendation Form is to be given to those writing recommendations; and in that case, the recommenders may submit letters directly to Dr. Sizemore or the applicant may submit the letters in sealed envelopes with the recommender's signature across the seal.

Documentation of English Proficiency (TOEFL or IELTS Score)

If an applicant's native language is not English, he or she must provide an official score from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL, http://www.ets.org/toefl/), or from the International English Testing System (IELTS, http://www.ielts.org/). Students whose native language is not English may be exempted from the English proficiency requirement if they received a bachelor's degree (typically an AB or BS degree) in residence from an accredited U.S. educational institution. The target TOEFL score set for UNC's LL.M. program applicants is 100 on the internet-based test format (iBT), 600 on the original paper-based test (PBT), or 250 on the computer based test (CBT). The target IELTS score is 7.0. Candidates whose scores fall below these target minimums are not disqualified and may still apply if English language proficiency is nevertheless strong. For such applicants, alternative indicators of proficiency, such as demonstrated ability to write English effectively as shown through writing samples and the ability to understand and communicate well as demonstrated through an in-person, telephone, or Skype interview will be important.

Official TOEFL and IELTS scores are required. They may be transmitted by LSAC-Credential Assembly Service as part of your application; in that case the score report is sent directly to LSAC. If the applicant decides not to use the LSAC CAS, then the scores need to be requested to be sent directly to UNC. UNC's institution code for the TOEFL is 5816.

Personal Statement

This statement should set out your reasons for seeking the LL.M. degree and your qualifications.This statement can discuss your personal and professional reasons for seeking the LL.M. degree and any particular interest in attending UNC's LL.M. program. It can also highlight an expected course of study and its relation to previous academic work, professional experience and career goals.

Although not substituting for a personal statement, applicants are also invited to include resumes and/or curriculum vitae. Please note any honors, publications and special activities that were achieved during your scholarly or professional experience considered relevant to the LL.M. degree.

UNC School of Law | Van Hecke-Wettach Hall | 160 Ridge Road, CB #3380 | Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3380 | 919.962.5106


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