J.D. Admission Procedures

Entering 1L J.D. Procedures

The College of Law seeks to admit and enroll students who, together, bring to the law school a varied set of backgrounds, interests, personal and professional experiences and perspectives, who also have a record of academic success and a competitive LSAT score. Other factors considered include exceptional personal talents, interesting or demanding work experience, rigorousness of undergraduate course study, leadership potential, graduate study, maturity and the ability to communicate effectively. An applicant's responses to the character and fitness questions in the application is also a significant factor in the decision-making process. Although a holistic approach is taken when reviewing applications, most admission decisions are based on the combination of LSAT/GRE score and undergraduate performance.

 

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Eligibility Notice

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited, U.S. institution, will have earned a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution, or hold the international equivalent of a U.S. bachelor's degree prior to the commencement of fall classes in order to be eligible for consideration.

Applicants applying through one of our formal 3+3 programs must have at minimum 90 credit hours and have met all other requirements set forth within the 3+3 program in order to be eligible for consideration.

Applicants that have previously attended law school are not eligible to apply as an entering 1L and must apply as a transfer. Please see the transfer application for details if you have previously attended law school. Individuals who have previously been academically dismissed from a law school are not eligible to apply to Florida State Law. 

Application Process

Florida State University encourages applications for admission from qualified students regardless of race, creed, color, sex, religion, national origin, age, disability, veteran or marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or any other protected group status in accordance with all pertinent federal, state, and local laws on non-discrimination and equal opportunity.

The College of Law begins accepting applications for fall 2020 entry on September 1, 2019. Applications are evaluated from October through August by the admissions committee. Decisions are made on a rolling basis and priority consideration is given to the strongest applications submitted by the priority deadline of March 15, 2020. Applications completed after March 15, 2020 but by the final deadline of July 31, 2020 may not receive a timely decision.

Florida State University College of Law is a full-time, three-year program. First-year students start in the fall semester.

Application Checklist

Use this checklist to make sure you've completed every step of the J.D. application process:

  • Application Fee (Non-Refundable)
  • Online Application Form
  • Standardized Admissions Test Requirement
    • Take the Law School Admission Test (LSAT), including the written portion of the LSAT [See LSAT WRITING REQUIREMENT note below], or the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) [See LSAT/GRE note below.]
  • Credential Assembly Service Report
    • All applicants must register with the Credential Assembly Service (CAS) through LSAC.
    • Applicants are responsible for ensuring that files are complete and current with the Credential Assembly Service.
    • The CAS report will include all valid LSAT scores within the past five years. The CAS report will not include GRE score information. GRE test results must be submitted to the College of Law through Educational Testing Service (ETS). [See LSAT/GRE note below.] 
    • The CAS report will include all official transcripts from undergraduate and graduate institutions attended.
    • Applicants must be in good standing at the bachelor's degree granting institution to be eligible for consideration.
  • LSAT/GRE Test Note
    • Applicants may submit either the LSAT or GRE as part of their application, but not both tests.
    • If an applicant has an existing reportable LSAT score, a GRE score will not be considered in lieu of the existing LSAT.
    • GRE scores may be utilized only when a reportable LSAT does not exist.
    • If the GRE is the test score submitted, all reportable test scores for the last five years must be submitted with the application.
    • The latest LSAT score accepted for fall 2020 consideration is from the June 2020 administration.
    • GRE test results must be submitted to the College of Law through Educational Testing Service (ETS). 
    • It can take four to six weeks for GRE scores to be processed by the university and included with the application once the official score report is received from ETS. An unofficial copy of the GRE score report must be uploaded to the application through LSAC if available or emailed by the applicant directly to the Office of Admissions if available after submitting the application.
  • LSAT Writing Requirement
    • Applicants must take the LSAT Writing portion, which is independently tested, within 30 days of the date of their LSAT examination.
    • LSAC will not send the CAS report to the College of Law if it does not include the LSAT Writing portion.
    • An application is not considered complete without the LSAT Writing portion.
    • Submission of a new LSAT Writing only portion does not qualify for reconsideration of a previously denied application.
  • Personal Statement
    • Each year, the Admissions Committee receives applications from many more qualified individuals than the law school is able to admit. In making admissions decisions among applicants with comparable LSAT and/or GRE scores and GPAs, the Committee considers a number of other factors. These include: interesting or demanding work or service experience; leadership potential; rigorousness of undergraduate course of study; graduate study; economic need requiring significant employment during college; social or cultural disadvantages; and extraordinary family or personal responsibilities. Your personal statement should discuss any of these factors that you would like the Committee to consider. The personal statement is typically 2-3 pages, typed and double-spaced. 
  • Resume
    • A detailed resume should accompany the application and must be submitted through LSAC.
  • Residency Form
    • Florida residents must complete and submit the Florida Residency Affidavit and non-Florida residents must complete and submit the Non-Florida Resident Affidavit. The forms are found in the Attachments section of the online application.
  • Educational Institution Discipline or Violations of Law
    • You must include in the application a written explanation that includes a description as well as the final disposition of the incident(s), IN ADDITION TO copies of the official documents pertaining to the incident(s). Official documents include, but are not limited to, court documents, copies of the citation, letter of good standing from the university, letter from the university regarding academic or disciplinary sanctions and their  completion, etc. Official documentation must include the final disposition of the incident to be valid.
    • Refer to question number five and question number six of the application for additional details.
  • Academic Addendum (optional)
    • You may include an academic addendum, explaining any circumstances that you believe may have negatively affected your undergraduate GPA or performance on the LSAT.  If included it must be submitted through LSAC.
  • Diversity Statement (optional)
    • You may include a diversity statement if desired. It is recommended that applicants utilize the optional diversity statement to enhance their application and provide additional information to the admissions committee. If included, it can be 1-3 pages in length and it must be submitted through LSAC.
  • Letter of Recommendation (optional)
    • No letters of recommendation are required, although they are encouraged. If you choose to submit letters of recommendation to support your application, FSU requires they be submitted through LSAC using the Credential Assembly Services (CAS).

Addendums to the application due to changes in information after the application is submitted, such as updated employment, LSAT score, academic or law violation documents, etc., must be submitted electronically to admissions@law.fsu.edu.

Documents not submitted electronically must be mailed to:

Florida State University College of Law
Attention: Office of Admissions
425 West Jefferson Street
Florida State University
Tallahassee, FL 32306-1601

Please note, documents submitted to the College of Law with no application on file will be discarded after 60 days.

Character and Fitness

Each jurisdiction establishes bar registration and admission standards for individuals who wish to practice within the jurisdiction. One important aspect of admission to practice is an evaluation of an applicant's character and fitness to practice law. Applicants should take care to respond fully and accurately to each question on the law school application. Applicants should be aware that, in conducting character and fitness investigations, bar examiners frequently request copies of candidates' applications for admission to law school to determine whether they have supplied erroneous, misleading, or incomplete information in the admission process. If discrepancies are found, bar examiners may conclude that such discrepancies demonstrate a lack of honesty, trustworthiness, diligence, or reliability so as to call into question the applicant's fitness for admission to the bar.

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 of Bar Examiners.

Social Security Number

The Social Security Number provided on your application MUST be your actual Social Security Number AND match the Social Security Number provided on your FAFSA. Your application cannot be completed without your actual Social Security Number on record. If your SSN on your application does not match the SSN in the university system or on your FAFSA, you will be required to provide a copy of your social security card to the Office of Admissions to verify your true SSN. Financial Aid cannot be packaged if there is a discrepancy with your SSN.

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

Students are encouraged to submit the FAFSA as close to the release date of October 1 as possible for priority consideration. Make sure you list Florida State University (school code #001489) on your FAFSA.

International Students

International students and others who have completed undergraduate education outside of the United States should submit their transcripts to LSAC through CAS for evaluation. A minimum educational equivalency of a bachelor's degree must be met for eligibility. Students are required to file the law school application and the Florida State University International Certificate of Financial Responsibility. International students whose native language is not English, and who did not receive a bachelor's degree from an undergraduate institution within the United States, are required to take either the TOEFL or the IELTS and have official scores submitted through LSAC as part of the application.

TOEFL Requirement

Minimum scores of 100 on the Internet-based, 250 on the computer-based, and 600 on the paper-based TOEFL test are required. Information on the TOEFL can be obtained by writing to TOEFL, Educational Testing Service, P.O. Box 6151, Princeton, NJ 08541-6151, or by visiting toefl.com.

IELTS Requirement

Minimum score of 7.5 on the IELTS test is required. Information on the IELTS can be obtained by visiting ielts.org.

Application Status Notification

You will receive an e-mail notifying you when we receive your application, which will include a username and password to the online status checker. Applicants are responsible for ensuring all required documentation is received by the College of Law in order to complete the application for review. Applicants will NOT be notified of missing documents other than through the online status checker.

Admissions Decisions

Applications are evaluated from October through August by the admissions committee. Decisions are made on a rolling basis and priority consideration is given to the strongest applications submitted by the priority deadline of March 15, 2020. Applications completed after March 15, 2020 but by the final deadline of July 31, 2020 may not receive a timely decision.

To determine whether or not your application is complete, you should regularly check your online status checker. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure the application is complete by the posted deadline.

Petitioning for Reconsideration

Applicants who have been denied admission can request reconsideration only in situations where the applicant has new, significant information that was not available at the time of the original application or during the timeframe in which your application was under review by the Admissions Committee. Examples of significant information include: a new LSAT score, new grade point average or an award or accomplishment that occurred after the original application file was submitted. Reconsiderations will not be granted based on existing application information; applicants must submit new information.

A written request must include an explanation of the new information as well as valid reasons warranting reconsideration. The request must be e-mailed within 30 days of the date of denial to admissions@law.fsu.edu with “Request for Reconsideration” in the subject line.

The Admissions Committee's decision on a petition for reconsideration is final. Further petitions will not be accepted.

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