LL.M. to J.D. Transfer Program

LL.M. to J.D. Transfer Program

The transfer program described below is designed for students currently pursuing the University of Virginia LL.M. degree who wish to apply to transfer to the J.D. program. To apply, see Application Information for Transfer Students.

Applicants who apply to transfer to the J.D. program will receive the LL.M. degree.  If they are accepted, they retain the LL.M. degree, and all the coursework they completed as an LL.M. will also be applied to the J.D. degree. They will then have to complete two additional years (4 semesters) to obtain the J.D. degree, including completion of all J.D. requirements.

An applicant’s entire file is carefully evaluated with attention given to grades received during the LL.M. year. The Transfer Committee feels that academic performance during the LL.M. year is an extremely important criterion. We anticipate that only applicants who have distinguished grades will be successful. A B+ or 3.3 GPA is the minimum threshold a student must meet to be considered but does not guarantee acceptance into the J.D. program.

Application and Supporting Documents

Transfer applicants are required to have a valid LSAT score on file no later than the application deadline for regular transfer students. An applicant must also submit the following items:

  1. A transcript of grades and credits earned during your two semesters in the LL.M. program.
  2. One or more letters of reference from University of Virginia law professors, at least one of which must be from a professor who teaches a course other than graduate legal research and writing. Additional Virginia Law faculty recommendations, including letters from legal research and writing instructors, may also be submitted.
  3. A statement setting forth your reasons for wishing to transfer.
  4. A J.D. program application form, completed online through the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC) link on the J.D. program website.

Financial Aid

If a transfer applicant received scholarship assistance as an LL.M. student, that assistance would not automatically continue if the applicant is admitted to the J.D. program. Requests for scholarships to attend the J.D. program should be addressed to the financial aid dean in the Financial Aid Office of the Law School. It should be noted, however, that the majority of financial assistance is in the form of federal loans. These funds are restricted to students who are U.S. citizens and permanent residents. Resources for foreign nationals are extremely limited. Therefore, when applying to transfer from the LL.M. to the J.D. program, a student must be prepared to fully finance his or her J.D. studies. Students who are in the United States on an F-1 or J-1 visa will be required to meet the financial responsibility requirements for the visa for the remaining two years.


Questions about the transfer process or the J.D. program itself should be directed to the J.D. Admissions Office at the University of Virginia School of Law. Students applying to transfer should discuss possible visa issues and Optional Practical Training issues with the University of Virginia’s International Studies Office early during the second semester of the LL.M. year.

Please Note:

University of Virginia LL.M. graduates may apply to the J.D. program within 5 years of graduation and, if accepted into the J.D. program, have the credits from their LL.M. degree applied to their J.D. degree. They would then have to complete two additional years (4 semesters) to obtain the J.D. degree, including completion of all J.D. requirements.

The University of Virginia School of Law accepts applications to transfer to the J.D. program only from current University of Virginia LL.M. students or University of Virginia LL.M. graduates who have graduated within the last 5 years. Students who received their LL.M. degree from 2010-2014 are not required to take the LSAT. Students who will graduate in or after 2015 are required to submit an LSAT score with their application.