Following is detailed information that provides answers to some of the most frequently-asked questions from applicants to the LLM program at George Mason School of Law. We encourage all potential applicants to review materials on this page prior to contacting our office with questions.
- Can you tell me about your law school and LLM application process?
- Admissions Information/Application Process
- How many LLM applications do you receive? How many applicants do you accept?
- What is George Mason's application deadline?
- After completing the LLM program, am I eligible to take a United States bar examination?
- Full-Time and Part-Time Programs
- Is it easier to gain transfer admission to the part-time program?
- How many credit hours are required?
- Is there any provision for LLM of previously completed credit hours?
- Requirements to Be Considered for Admission
- What is the general application process for LLM students?
- How many letters of recommendation are required?
- Does George Mason require that letters of recommendation be submitted through the Law Services Letter of Recommendation Service?
- May I submit a resume with my application?
- Is there a preferred topic for the personal statement?
- My personal statement is longer than 500 words. Is that a problem?
- Other Helpful Information
- Does George Mason give preference to Virginia applicants or to applicants from certain parts of the Commonwealth?
- Are Personal Interviews Required?
- Must I disclose information about prior or pending criminal, disciplinary, or academic problems in my LLM application?
- Can I visit the law school and sit in on a class?
- If I am admitted to George Mason, how long will I have to decide if I will attend? Does George Mason require seat deposits?
- Are seat deposits credited toward tuition?
- Are seat deposits refundable in whole or in part?
- When is tuition due?
- How much does it cost to attend the LLM program?
- Is financial aid available?
- Are there any scholarships available?
- Does George Mason offer in-state tuition rates for Virginians?
- When does the George Mason LLM program start? When does it end? How long does it take to complete the degree program?
- What classes to LLM students take?
- Admissions Office Staff — Contact Information
As a starting point, it is generally most useful for prospective LLM applicants to visit our website (www.law.gmu.edu) as well as the websites of other law schools in which they are interested. It is always better for us to talk with individuals about their unique situations and interests, rather than reciting information readily available on the web. Likewise, reviewing the general information and general FAQs posted often helps prospective LLM applicants formulate specific questions that are most important to them.
Mason Law offers two LLM degrees: The LLM in Intellectual Property and the LLM in Law & Economics. Mason Law does not offer a general LLM program at this time.
Intellectual Property LLM
This degree is designed for attorneys who intend to practice in the fields of patent, copyright, and trademark law. The curriculum in the Intellectual Property LLM program includes courses covering every aspect of intellectual property law, from basic courses in patent, copyright, and trademark, to enforcement, litigation and dispute resolution, among others. For information regarding the degree requirements, curriculum, and faculty of the Intellectual Property LLM program, click here.
Law and Economics LLM
George Mason University School of Law is one of the nation’s leading centers for the study of law and economics. During the past 15 years, George Mason has assembled a distinctive, interdisciplinary faculty, many of whom hold doctorates in economics, philosophy, political science or related fields. The LLM Degree in Law & Economics provides an opportunity to develop an expertise in the skills of economic analysis as they are applied to a variety of legal settings. For information regarding the degree requirements, curriculum, and faculty of the Law & Economics LLM program, click here.
Our LLM application, along with detailed instructions, is available online through the Law School Admission Council (LSAC). LSAC provides a useful LLM Application Checklist as well as detailed instructions on how to use the LLM Credential Assembly Service (CAS). If you have questions about the admissions process, make sure to review our How to Apply page, and if you have further questions contact the Admissions Office at email@example.com or (703) 993-8010.
The number of LLM applications varies dramatically from year to year. More importantly, the number of admission offers also varies and depends on academic and professional records. Like our JD admissions process, our LLM admissions process is competitive. We are looking for students who are a good fit for our specialized programs. Enrollment in the LLM program is limited to less than 25 students per program to ensure that each LLM student receives individual attention.
Our application deadline for a fall start is June 1, and our application deadline for a spring start is December 1. All documents must be received by those dates. If you have questions about the admissions process, make sure to review our How to Apply page, and if you have further questions contact the Admissions Office at firstname.lastname@example.org or (703) 993-8010.
The two LLM programs offered by George Mason are not intended to prepare or qualify students who are not graduates of a United States law school to engage in practice of law in the United States or to qualify them to take a bar examination. However, completing additional coursework beyond what is required for the LLM in order to become bar eligible is possible. Click here for more information regarding foreign-trained attorney eligibility for United States bar examinations.
George Mason offers both full-time and part-time LLM enrollment.
Students in the full-time program generally attend classes during the day (day classes are scheduled between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m.). Students in the part-time program generally attend classes in the evenings (evening classes are scheduled between the hours of 6:00 and 10:00 p.m.) and take fewer classes. However, full-time students may register for evening classes, and part-time students may register for day classes.
No. Our admission standards are the same for the full-time and part-time programs.
In order to earn an LLM at George Mason, students must successfully complete a total of 24-26 credit hours. Domestic JD holders will have the 2 credit Introduction to United States Law requirement waived, and therefore must complete 24 credit hours to receive the LLM degree. Students who have not studied at a United States Law School must take Introduction to United States Law and therefore must complete 26 credit hours to receive the LLM degree.
Full-time students typically take 12-15 credit hours per semester; part-time students typically take 8-12 credit hours. For the purposes of the F-1 and J-1 visas, 9 or more credit hours are required to meet the full-time requirement of the visa.
No transfer credits will be granted for LLM applicants. The director may waive the Introduction to United States Law requirement for students who have previously studied at a United States law school, excusing the student from that 2 credit hour course. However, no transfer of credit will transpire and the Introduction to United States Law course would not appear on a student’s transcript in the situation of a waiver.
Students who have received a JD from Mason may be able to transfer some credits towards an LLM degree. Contact email@example.com for more information about potentially transferring credits from a Mason Law JD towards a Mason Law LLM degree.
There are a number of requirements that you must satisfy in order to be considered for admission to our LLM program. Please be sure that you carefully review the instructions that accompany our application form, which is available through LSAC.
Please see our How to Apply page for full details on the application process.
1. Application and Application Fee
All applicants apply electronically via the Law School Admission Council (LSAC). LSAC provides a useful LLM Application Checklist as well as detailed instructions on how to use the LLM Credential Assembly Service (CAS). A completed application form will be sent to the law school electronically and on paper. Please do not send us a paper copy of your electronically submitted application. The application must be accompanied by a $75 nonrefundable application fee, which is payable through LSAC.
2. Official Transcripts
Applicants must submit all transcripts from college, university, law school, and post-graduate level work and degrees through LLM CAS.
One of the documents submitted should be at least one of the following:
(a) An official law school transcript showing completion of a JD degree in the United States; or
(b) An official transcript (including grades) showing completion of a law degree in a country other than the United States; or
(c) Other official proof of status as a lawyer in a country other than the United States.
3. 500-Word Statement
The applicant is required to submit a 500-word statement of educational and professional goals, double-spaced, that will serve as both a statement of purpose and a writing sample. The thoughts and words of the 500-word statement must be uniquely those of the applicant. With the exception of basic proofreading, no other(s) may assist in the creation of this statement.
The applicant must submit a resume. There is no page limit.
5. Letters of Recommendation
The applicant must submit two letters of recommendation addressing the applicant's academic and professional potential. Letters of recommendation must identify you as an LLM applicant.
George Mason strongly prefers that applicants use the LSAC Letter of Recommendation Service, following LSAC procedures. Any applicant who does not use the LSAC Letter of Recommendation Service may have their recommendation sent directly to George Mason Law. Recommendations submitted directly to George Mason Law must include George Mason Law's recommendation form and be either sent directly from the recommenders e-mail account or via post in a sealed envelope and bear the author's signature across the sealed envelope flap.
All applicants must complete an informal interview with the director of the LLM program. Interviews may take place in-person at the George Mason Arlington campus or remotely via Skype. Interviews will last between fifteen and thirty minutes and are informational in nature. The admissions office will contact applicants to schedule interviews once all other application documents have been received.
7. Application for Virginia In-State Tuition Rates (required only for applicants who believe they qualify for in-state tuition rates)
Applicants who believe they qualify for in-state tuition rates must complete the Application for Virginia In-State Tuition Rates. This form must be printed and mailed separately; it does not transmit electronically.
See the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia Domicile Guidelines the George Mason University Domicile Office for information regarding in-state tuition rate eligibility.
8. Law School Admission Test (LSAT) Scores (required only for applicants who are graduates of United States law schools)
For graduates of United States law schools, documentation of LSAT scores or an attached copy of the Credential Assembly Service Law School Report, which can be usually obtained from the registrar of the degree-granting institution, is requested.
9. Proof of English Proficiency (required for applicants who do not possess a JD from an ABA approved law school, are not native English speakers, and have not received a degree form a college or university whose language of instruction is English)
A TOEFL or IELTS score that meets Mason Law’s minimum requirements is required.
- The minimum TOEFL iBT score required to be considered for admission is 88.
- The minimum IELTS score required to be considered for admission is 6.5.
- Applicants who do not meet the language requirement may consider participating in the INTO Mason LLM Pathway program. INTO Mason provides an academic English program as well as a Pathway to the LLM program. For more information about INTO Mason, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Conditional admission may be provided to those who enroll in the Mason INTO program.
Information about the TOEFL and IELTS can be found at www.toefl.org and www.ielts.org, respectively. The George Mason Law Institution code is 5827. Please arrange to have an official TOEFL or IELTS score report sent to LSAC no later than June 1 for fall admission and no later than December 1 for spring admission. Applicants must have taken the TOEFL or IELTS within two years of submitting their application. In addition to these testing requirements, English proficiency will be assessed during the mandatory interview.
10. International Student Certificate of Financial Responsibility Form (required only for students seeking an F-1 or J-1 student visa)
If seeking a student visa to study in the United States, the applicant must submit an International Student Certificate of Financial Responsibility Form. Immigration documents required for international students studying full time in the United States will not be issued until the student has completed the form and returned it along with the identification page of the passport and supporting documents to:
We require two letters of recommendation. Letters of recommendation must identify you as an LLM applicant.
Does George Mason require that letters of recommendation be submitted through the Law Services Letter of Recommendation Service?
Applicants may submit letters through the LSAC Letter of Recommendation Service, preferred, or directly to our Admissions Office, using the letter of recommendation form (be sure to scroll down the page until you reach the recommendation form).
Yes, a resume is required for LLM applicants.
The applicant is required to submit a 500-word, double-spaced statement of educational and professional goals that will serve as both a statement of purpose and a writing sample. The thoughts and words of the 500-word statement must be uniquely those of the applicant. With the exception of basic proofreading, no other(s) may assist in the creation of this statement.
We strongly prefer that you stay within the 500-word limit. However, we neither count words nor penalize applicants for overages. If your statement is 550 or 650 words, that's fine. If your statement is 2,000 words, you should try to rework it to get the word count closer to 500.
Does George Mason give preference to Virginia applicants or to applicants from certain parts of the Commonwealth?
Applications are reviewed in their entirety, and admission offers are made to the most desirable candidates without regard to geographic distribution or residency.
Yes, an informal interview is required as a part of the LLM admissions process. All applicants must complete an informal interview with the director of the LLM program. Interviews may take place in-person at the George Mason Arlington campus or remotely via Skype. Interviews will last between fifteen and thirty minutes and are informational in nature. The admissions office will contact applicants to schedule interviews once all other application documents have been received.
If an applicant completes an interview in-person on the Arlington campus, LLM applicants are welcome to visit the law school for a tour as well.
Must I disclose information about prior or pending criminal, disciplinary, or academic problems in my LLM application?
Yes. It is extremely important that you describe details of any criminal, disciplinary and/or academic actions in response to the Character and Fitness section questions of our LLM application. Failure to disclose this information can result in serious problems, both in relation to your law school application (we have revoked acceptances in the past in cases in which we learned of the applicant's failure to disclose information) and in applying for admission to the bar in any state. State boards of bar examiners will conduct character and fitness investigations to determine if you are fit for admission to the bar. Those investigations typically include criminal background checks, as well as review of your law school application, undergraduate record and law school record. It is critically important that your disclosures of the type of information requested in our Character and Fitness section questions be complete, truthful and consistent in your law school and bar applications.
Applicants are welcome to visit our law school for a tour and class observation. Please check our web site at tour schedule.
If I am admitted to George Mason, how long will I have to decide if I will attend? Does George Mason require seat deposits?
If you are offered LLM admission to George Mason, you will be required to make a seat deposit of $500.00 within two weeks of admission, or as of April 1 for fall admissions, whichever comes later. You will not be able to register for classes, set up your Mason e-mail account, of receive your I-20 or DS-2019 immigration forms until your seat deposit and Intent to Enroll form are received and processed.
Yes. The seat deposits that you make prior to matriculating will be credited to your first semester tuition.
No. Seat deposits are completely non-refundable. If you make your seat deposit and subsequently decide that you will not attend George Mason, you will forfeit your seat deposit.
Tuition is due on a semester basis, on the first day of each semester.
Full-time tuition for the 2015-2016 academic year is $25,351 for in-state residents, and $40,737 for out-of-state residents. Part-time tuition is $898.25/credit hour for in-state residents, and $1,447.75/credit hour for out-of-state residents. For detailed information regarding cost, including part-time tuition rates and cost of living, please visit the Tuition and Costs page.
George Mason students may receive loan funds. Government subsidized student loans are only available to U.S. citizens and Permanent Residents. Admitted students work with the Office of Student Financial Aid to obtain loans. For more information, please go to financialaid.gmu.edu.
George Mason has limited scholarship funds available for outstanding LLM applicants. Awards range in amount from $5,000 to over $25,000. No additional application materials are required to be considered for scholarships – all applicants are evaluated as potential scholarship candidates and scholarship offers are made on a rolling basis. We encourage all students to investigate community scholarships, many of which are identified on the law school's website.
George Mason offers lower tuition rates for individuals domiciled in Virginia. For more detailed information about domicile, please visit registrar.gmu.edu/students/domicile.
When does the George Mason LLM program start? When does it end? How long does it take to complete the degree program?
Students start the LLM program in the fall and spring of each year. The fall semester begins in mid-August, and the spring semester begins in early January. For exact start and end dates, as well as holiday periods, see the Academic Calendar.
The LLM degree is awarded once a student has completed 24-26 credit hours (24 credit hours for those students who have the Introduction to United States Law course requirement waived, 26 credit hours for those students who must complete the Introduction to United States Law Course).
Each semester, students take between 5 and 17 credit hours, with most full time students completing 9 – 14 credit hours a semester, and most part time students completing 5 – 8 credit hours a semester. 2 full semesters are offered each academic year – fall and spring. There is also a short summer semester, but typically very few courses are offered during the summer.
LLM students may take up to three years (6 semesters) to complete the degree. Full-time students can complete the degree in one year (2 semesters), but some choose to spread out their credits over three to four semesters rather than two semesters.
LLM students take courses included in their LLM program’s curriculum. The Intellectual Property LLM curriculum can be found here, the Law & Economics LLM Curriculum can be found here.
With the exception of Introduction to United States Law and Economic Foundations of Legal Studies for LLM Students, all LLM courses are taken alongside JD students.
Students are allowed to take courses outside of their LLM program curriculum if they have a particular interest in a course or if they are obtaining bar exam eligibility through extra coursework. However, these courses will not be counted towards the 24-26 credit hours required for the LLM degree. The student will be billed for courses outside the LLM curriculum just as they would be for courses within the LLM curriculum.