Timeline and Expectations for Virginia Law Admissions Cycle
Throughout the application and admission process, applicants can expect that the UVA Law Admissions Office will
- adhere to LSAC’s Statement of Good Admissions Practices;
- be available for questions via email (firstname.lastname@example.org), telephone (434-924-7351) or for one-on-one meetings (by appointment);
- respond as promptly as possible to inquiries. (Some weeks in the cycle are very busy. If you contact us and do not hear back from us within two business days, please call or email again.)
From applicants, we expect the decorum and comportment — in written and telephone correspondence, as well as in person — that characterizes the best members of the legal profession.
- Sept. 1, 2015 – FlexApp available via LSAC
- Jan. 1, 2016 – Financial Aid Office begins accepting FAFSA and Need Access
- Feb. 19, 2016 – Priority FAFSA filing deadline
- March 1, 2016 – Financial Aid awarding via Student Info System (SIS) begins
- March 7, 2016 – Application deadline to receive decision by April 15
- March 17-18, 2016 – Admitted student open house
- April 19, 2016– Initial deposit deadline (make deposit)
- June 1, 2016 – Second deposit deadline (make deposit)
- Mid-July 2016 – Fall semester bills distributed
- Mid-August 2016 – Fall semester bill payment due
- Aug. 22-23, 2016 – 1L orientation
- Aug. 31, 2016 – New student health forms due
The admissions cycle opens when applications are first available via LSAC and runs through orientation day the following year in August. Applications received by March 1 will be guaranteed a decision by April 15. Applications received after March 1 will be reviewed, but we cannot guarantee when a decision on such applications will be delivered.
During this time, we’re receiving many applications and conducting interviews by invitation. This time period is also when we receive the bulk of applications for admission under the Binding Expedited Decision option (although such applications can be submitted at any time), so this time period is largely dedicated to evaluating such applications and issuing decisions to binding-option applicants pursuant to our 15-day turnaround policy. Regular decision–option applicants do not typically receive offers of admission during this time period.
In this time frame, the majority of offers of admission are made to Regular Decision applicants (via letter). We recommend applying earlier in the cycle because the number of spaces in the class dwindles as time passes, but this does not mean that an application submitted in December through March will not be given consideration or be eligible for an offer. Our objective is to fill the incoming class with applicants who are most likely to excel and thrive in our community — with its decades-long and well-known reputation for engaged, collegial and collaborative members.
This period is also when we will spend a lot of time and effort reaching out to admitted students to provide information about our community and programs. In doing so, we aim to inform admitted students about our community — our engaging academic programs, the strength of our alumni network, the quality of life enjoyed by generations of students — from the members of the community themselves. Connecting admitted students with our students, faculty, staff and alumni helps admitted students understand the distinctiveness of Virginia Law.
We host an Admitted Student Open House on a Thursday afternoon through Friday evening in mid-to-late March. Admitted applicants who cannot attend the open house are encouraged to visit at any time; we are happy to design a personalized visit on request if notified in advance.
Throughout March and April, we award scholarships to admitted students (via letter), and admitted students receive a financial aid award package via our Student Information System (SIS). Our goal is to have an aid package for every student admitted through our Regular Decision process at least one month before the deadline to submit a seat deposit to Virginia Law.
Throughout the cycle, but most prominently between February and April, we notify some applicants that we must place them on the waiting list. We recognize that placement on a waiting list is not the news an applicant hopes for, nor is it the ideal or desired situation for the Admissions Office. The reality of our admission process is that we will receive more applications we want to accept than we initially can accept without risking over-enrolling the class and/or over-spending the scholarship budget. That means we have to ask some applicants to wait until we know how many seats we have to offer as part of our enrollment management process. In the meantime, such students will decide among schools to which they have been admitted and make any necessary arrangements to hold a seat there. It is worth noting that LSAC’s Statement of Good Admissions Practices (see page 3, No. 6) prohibits schools from requiring students admitted under a non-binding option to withdraw from wait lists. We strongly encourage a student we place on the waiting list to be in touch with us (and to stay in touch with us) to describe and evidence their commitment to attending Virginia Law.
The deadline for admitted students to accept or decline a seat in Virginia Law’s incoming class (by submission of an online, nonrefundable seat deposit) occurs in mid-to-late April. The Statement of Good Admissions Practices prohibits any school from requiring any kind of commitment prior to April 1 from non-binding admitted applicants (see page 3, No. 5).
Based on an evaluation of the class of admitted students holding seats, we may make offers (and scholarship awards, if merited) to wait-listed students beginning in late April and continuing through June. Likewise, because other law schools undertake the same effort during the same time (to varying degrees), and because students holding seats in our class may receive wait-list offers from such schools, the wait-list process is an unpredictable and fluid process. We therefore send out weekly updates, via email, to wait-listed applicants beginning in mid-April, and we strongly encourage applicants who remain committed to attending Virginia Law to stay in contact with us.
Admitted students holding seats in the incoming class who would like to defer their enrollment should submit a request no later than June 1 via email. If the request is approved, we will send a letter confirming the deferral.
During June and July, the dean of students and other departments (such as IT) contact incoming students with information about orientation, health records and insurance, computing requirements and email set-up.
By early-to-mid-July, and after our second seat deposit (for applicants who submitted only one deposit at the initial deadline), wait-list offers typically slow down. Moreover, we notify those wait-listed applicants who will not be offered admission of this decision as soon as possible. On occasion, however, we will receive a late request for deferral or we will otherwise learn of a seat coming available through July and into August up to the date of orientation. We therefore keep a list of some wait-listed applicants who have expressed continued commitment to attending Virginia Law and we may contact those applicants with an offer (and scholarship award, if merited), up until the week before fall semester classes begin.
On the morning of orientation in mid-August, all incoming students must sign in. Orientation is mandatory.
Fall semester classes typically begin in mid-August.