Transfer Applicants

Yale Law School welcomes applications for transfer admission for students currently enrolled in the first year of law school. An undergraduate degree and an outstanding record at an accredited law school are prerequisites. Transfer applications will be considered only between the applicant's first and second years of law school, as incoming transfer students must complete two years of work at Yale Law School. 

Yale Law School is no longer accepting transfer applications for the Class of 2024. The transfer application for the Class of 2025 will be available through the Law School Admission Council (LSAC) beginning on May 1, 2023. The Law School requires applicants to submit their applications through the LSAC electronic application service included as part of a Law School Credential Assembly Service (CAS) subscription

Transfer applications must be accompanied by a non-refundable $85 application fee. If you would like to request a need-based fee waiver of your Yale Law School application fee, you may request one by filling out this brief form. Need-based fee waivers are generously granted, and parental information is not requested as part of the fee waiver application. Additionally, we will automatically waive our transfer application fee for individuals who were offered a place on our waitlist in a prior admission cycle.

We invite you to learn more about Yale Law School's transfer application process by watching this recorded Transfer Application Open House. You may also schedule a time to speak with an admissions representative about the transfer application process.

Applications will be considered only from applicants enrolled at U.S. law schools approved by the American Bar Association.

Applicants in part-time and evening law school programs must earn the equivalent number of credits as a rising second-year student in their schools’ full-time programs to be eligible to matriculate. With the exception or courses completed online due to COVID-19, course work completed through correspondence or online courses will not be granted credit. Typically, the completion of 24 law school credits is sufficient to be considered a rising second-year student. Upon admission, the Registrar’s Office will make a formal determination of the number of credits that will transfer to Yale Law School.

Qui Transtulit Sustinet, meaning “he who transplanted sustains,” is the official motto of Connecticut, and at YLS, it is also the name of the transfer student organization. Students who accept an offer to transfer will automatically become members of the QTs, which hosts events for transfer students, provides career guidance and mentorship opportunities, and serves as a formal way for current transfers to help improve the transfer experience by advocating for changes to the administration and other student-run organizations. After being admitted, you will receive information about getting in contact with current QTs, and at that time you can also feel free to reach out to the QT’s here for any and all questions you have about the transfer experience.

Participation in any journal at Yale Law School, including the Yale Law Journal, is in no way required, nor is it necessary for success. Most students at YLS are not members of the Yale Law Journal, and they still go on to have very successful and fulfilling careers.

For those interested in a journal experience, YLS has eight journals, all of which, with the exception of the Yale Law Journal, allow students to “walk on” during the school year, generally with nothing more than a brief statement of interest. More information about these publications can be found here.

To apply to the Yale Law Journal, transfer students have the option to either (1) apply the summer between their first and second years of law school, or (2) defer their application until after the spring of their second year. Please note that students may only apply to the Journal once, so transfer students who select option (1) may not reapply for the Journal the following year. Students may also be offered admission if they write a Note that is accepted for publication in the Journal. More information and a specific timeline for the application process for the Yale Law Journal can be found here.

Visiting Student Applicants

In special circumstances, a student enrolled in a J.D. program at another ABA-approved U.S. law school may apply for admission on a full-time, non-degree basis. Visiting students may attend Yale Law School for a semester or a maximum of one year, earning credit toward a degree at their own institutions. Applicants must have completed the equivalent of a year of law school before enrolling at YLS under this status.

Students applying as visiting students should complete the J.D. application in the paper format and mail it to the Admissions Office, along with a $85 application fee. Please contact the Admissions Office to request a Visiting Student application.

A complete Visiting Student application must also contain a written statement explaining your interest in studying at Yale Law School, a law school transcript, a CAS Report, two letters of recommendation from law school professors, dean's certifications from all degree programs in which the applicant has been enrolled, and a letter from the applicant’s degree-granting law school giving permission to earn credit for course work at YLS. The Admissions Committee considers past academic performance as well as special circumstances when reviewing applications; decisions are made on a rolling basis.