Application: How to Apply

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If you seek a high-quality legal education in a collaborative, dynamic, varied community committed to excellence, service, and individuality, we encourage you to apply to UC Davis School of Law. The Admissions Committee is seeking law students of demonstrated academic ability, as evidenced by many factors including LSAT and GRE scores, the undergraduate grade point average (GPA), any economic or other disadvantages overcome by the applicant, graduate studies, and extracurricular activities. The School of Law also has a commitment to diversity and an important goal of the admission process is a student body with diverse backgrounds, interests, experiences, and skills.

J.D. Application Information

We begin accepting applications for Fall J.D. admission on September 1, through the Law School Admission Council (LSAC) online application site and there is no fee to apply. Students are admitted for the fall semester only. UC Davis School of Law offers a three-year, full-time program only. There is no part-time, evening, or summer program.

Applicants for admission to the professional curriculum of the School of Law, leading to the degree of Juris Doctor, must evidence a record of sufficiently high caliber to qualify for the study of law. A bachelor's degree, or an equivalent degree from a college or university of approved standing, must have been earned prior to the time the applicant begins work in the school. Pursuant to ABA Standard 509 (d) governing law school admissions, all matriculating students must supply an official transcript denoting conferral and date of conferral of a bachelor's degree by October 15. Failure to submit an official transcript may result in disenrollment. Disenrolled students may still be responsible for any tuition and fees incurred to date.

All completed applications are evaluated by the Admissions Committee. Students who have been disqualified at another law school will not be admitted to UC Davis. Any fraudulent practices relating to the admission process will be considered grounds for disqualification by the Admissions Committee. For more information, the Admissions Procedures and Criteria is available upon request.


Application Requirements

All applicants must meet the following requirements to receive consideration for admission into our J.D. program. Failure to successfully submit all application materials and test scores will result in an incomplete file. Incomplete files are not reviewed by our admission committee. To learn more about the application requirements, please click the drop-down menu associated with each step. We look forward to reviewing your application!

  • 1. Take the LSAT or GRE
  • Take the LSAT or the GRE. Scores older than five years before the date of application are invalid. Please see the FAQs for additional information about the latest acceptable test date for the current admission cycle. The law school's ETS code for submitting GRE scores is 4185. For more information about how the GRE is used in our evaluation process, please see the FAQs.

    Note re JD-Next Standardized Test Alternative: Although UC Davis School of Law received a variance from ABA Standard 503 to begin accepting the JD-Next score in lieu of the LSAT or GRE, the faculty has not approved any changes to our Admission Procedures & Criteria for first-year JD admission. If and when it approves any changes, we will promptly update our website. For more information about the JD-Next program, please visit the JD-Next website.
  • 2. Create an LSAC Account
  • Create an online account at and register with the LSAC Credential Assembly Service (CAS). All applicants must apply using the CAS system, regardless of whether they intend to apply with a GRE and/or LSAT score.
  • 3. Complete the J.D. Application
    • Our J.D. application can be found on the website. Each year the application opens on September 1 and the preferred deadline is March 15There is no application fee to apply. All application materials must be submitted using the LSAC application site.

    • If you are interested in applying Early Decision, the application deadline is November 1.

    • Apply Now
  • 4. Upload a Personal Statement 
  • Your personal statement should be two to four pages (double-spaced, 12-point font). The statement may discuss any of a variety of factors, including academic promise, background information, and any discrepancies in GPA and/or LSAT score and/or GRE score; growth, maturity, and commitment to law study as evidenced, for example, by extracurricular activities, community service, employment experience and advanced study; severe economic disadvantage or physical disability; other factors relating to diversity, including bilingual skills and unusual accomplishments, skills or abilities relevant to the legal profession.

    Please note: the four-page limit includes optional supplemental materials described below.
  • 5. Request Letters of Recommendation 
  • Please request a minimum of two, no more than three, letters of recommendation from individuals who know the applicant well and are not related to him/her. All letters must be submitted through LSAC, and evaluations are not considered.
  • 6. Submit Official Transcript(s)
  • You must submit an official transcript or transcripts from all institutions attended. Applicants earning grades after initial application should submit supplementary transcripts as soon as they are available. For purposes of making an admission decision, UC Davis considers the CAS-calculated undergraduate GPA to be the GPA of record (which may be different than the cumulative degree GPA calculated by your undergraduate institution) and uses this GPA in all of its published statistics. For more information on how CAS calculates UGPA, please visit the LSAC website Transcript Summarization.
  • 7. Upload a Résumé 
  • A résumé (one to two pages preferred) is required. We especially encourage applicants to include details of employment or other activities (including hours spent per week) undertaken during the academic year, regardless of activity type.

Supplemental Materials Optional for All Applicants

NOTE: All optional supplemental material (see below), when combined with the personal statement, should NOT exceed four pages, double-spaced, 12-point font. Supplemental addenda should follow your personal statement and be appropriately labeled within the personal statement document you plan to upload with your application.

  • Diversity Statement describing background or an experience that enables an applicant to bring a unique perspective to the study of law, our community, and/or contribute to serving diverse populations
  • Addenda (for example, LSAT, GRE, GPA, leave of absence from school, etc.) providing additional context and describing special circumstances necessary to evaluate the application fairly

Additional Requirements for International Students

Applicants who have completed the bachelor's degree outside the US (including its territories), Puerto Rico, or Canada must submit transcripts to the LSAC Credential Assembly Service (CAS). A Foreign Credential Evaluation will be completed and submitted to the law school as part of the CAS report.

A Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is required of all applicants educated outside the US and those for whom English was not the primary language of instruction for their degree program (undergraduate or graduate degree program), regardless of whether the institution is located outside the U.S. If your undergraduate degree is from an institution outside the U.S. or Canada, but you have a graduate degree from a U.S. institution (or other institution at which the primary language of instruction was English), the TOEFL requirement is waived.

Contact the Educational Testing Service (ETS) to request that your TOEFL score be sent to LSAC. LSAC's TOEFL code for CAS is 8395. Your score will be included in the Foreign Credential Evaluation document that will be included in your law school report. The minimum requirements for the TOEFL score are 600 on the paper version of the exam, 250 on the computerized version, and 100 on the Internet Based Test. At this time, we do not accept IELTS in lieu of TOEFL.

Those who have extensive professional experience in an English-speaking setting may request a TOEFL waiver by emailing the Office of Admission and Financial Aid at Please attach a short description of the experience and attach a resume. NOTE: You do NOT need to request a waiver if you have a degree (graduate or undergraduate) from a U.S. or Canadian institution (or other institution where the primary language of instruction is English).


Applicants who reapply for admission must comply with all of the above procedures. The LSAT or GRE does not need to be repeated (provided it is from an LSAT or GRE taken within the past five years), but a current CAS report must be provided in addition to the application. Although not required, we encourage reapplicants to submit an updated résumé and personal statement.

Combined Degree Programs

Combined Degree Programs are available with the UC Davis Graduate School of Management and most of the master's degree programs offered through the UC Davis Department of Graduate Studies. Separate applications should be submitted to each department because the evaluation and decision processes are performed independently. If admitted to both programs, the applicant must enroll at the School of Law for the first year. Contact the Graduate School or department for their requirements.

California Residency

The law school admission process does not consider residency although tuition is based on physical residency. Detailed information about residency is provided at the UC Davis Office of the Registrar's website. Specific questions about residency should be directed to the UC Davis Residency Deputy. The School of Law does not make any residency determinations.

Qualifications 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.

Notice to Students Re: Professional Licensure and Certification

University of California programs for professions that require licensure or certification are intended to prepare the student for California licensure and certification requirements. Admission into programs for professions that require licensure and certification does not guarantee that students will obtain a license or certificate. Licensure and certification requirements are set by agencies that are not controlled by or affiliated with the University of California and licensure and certification requirements can change at any time.

The University of California has not determined whether its programs meet other states’ educational or professional requirements for licensure and certification. Students planning to pursue licensure or certification in other states are responsible for determining whether, if they complete a University of California program, they will meet their state’s requirements for licensure or certification. This disclosure is made pursuant to 34 CFR §668.43(a)(5)(v)(C).

Please see UC Office of the President Institutional Research and Academic Planning website for the most current information.