J.D. Admissions: Transfer & Visiting Students

Transfer Students
The Office of Admissions welcomes transfer students each year for the J.D. program. In order to be eligible for transfer, you must be a student in good standing at an ABA-accredited law school. Most successful transfer students are in the top half of their law school class. Our review process is holistic and considers all the information you submit, but we pay particular attention to your performance in the first year of law school.

Visiting Students
Typically, a few students are admitted each year as visiting students after the second year of study at another law school. Students interested in visiting the University of Richmond School of Law should follow the instructions for transfer students. Additionally, the letter from the dean of the law school you are presently attending should state that your current law school is willing to accept grades earned at the University of Richmond School of Law as credit toward your degree.

Expand All
  • Timeline

    Visiting Applicant Timeline

    September 15, 2023 - Visiting applicants may apply for the 2024-2025 academic year.

    Enrolled students at an ABA or Internationally accredited law school may apply to visit for the 2024 academic year by submitting the required information listed below. Visiting students may apply for a semester or a year. Admissions decisions are made on a rolling basis depending on the semester for which you are applying. Early application is encouraged.

    Students may apply as visiting students during or after their second year of study at another law school. If you are applying to visit at Richmond Law, you must comply with the general application instructions listed below. In addition to the other requirements, your Letter of Good Standing must state a willingness by your home institution to accept grades earned here at Richmond Law as credit towards your degree. Visiting applicants should address specifically why they would like to visit Richmond Law in their personal statement or elsewhere in their application.


    Transfer Applicant Timeline

    September 15, 2023 - The transfer application opens for the 2024-2025 academic year.

    All transfer applicants must complete their application by August 1, 2024. However, applicants are encouraged to apply as early as possible. Decisions will not be released until you have completed at least one year of law school. You may submit your application before this time, but your file will not be complete and eligible for review until an official transcript with all first-year grades are received.  Decisions are made on a rolling basis after files are completed. 

  • Requirements

    Application - The submitted application must be completed in full, with all required and any relevant optional questions answered in order to be considered. Failure to do so may delay the processing of your application. All applications MUST be submitted through the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC).

    Transcripts - Registration with the LSAC Credential Assembly Service (CAS) is required. After you register for the CAS, you must have a transcript sent to LSAC from each undergraduate, technical school, graduate, and law institution you have attended (as a matriculated or non-matriculated student), whether or not a degree was earned. This includes any dual credits earned in high school, college-level summer school, and all transfer credits, etc. This must also include an official transcript showing your grades and class standing at the end of the first year of law school. Either the transcript or required Letter of Good Standing must indicate your class rank or the reason that no rank is provided.

    Letters of Recommendation - Applicants should use the Letter of Recommendation Service offered through CAS. Although Letters of Recommendation are not required, we strongly encourage at least one Letter of Recommendation, preferably from a professor at your current law school. Up to four letters will be considered. Note: Letters of recommendation are held in confidence. The submission of your application constitutes your waiver of any and all rights to review letters of recommendation retained by this law school. Letters are used for law admissions purposes only.

    Letter of Good Standing - The appropriate Dean or Registar of the law school you are presently attending must send a letter to the Richmond Law Admissions Office stating that you are in good standing and eligible to continue your studies there.  Letters of Good standing may be sent directly to the Admissions Office.  Either the Letter of Good Standing or required transcript must indicate your class rank or the reason that no rank is provided.

    Résumé - The résumé may be of any length and in any appropriate format for a professional résumé or CV. It should provide chronological information about your academic background, work experiences, extracurricular or charitable activities, publications, and accomplishments.

    Personal Statement - The required personal statement should be approximately two pages in length and can address any topic you deem relevant that will provide additional insight into your experiences, qualifications, and interests. We encourage you to provide information about yourself otherwise not found in your application. We do not recommend explaining any legal or educational issues associated with your application here. If needed, please address these issues in an addendum. We do encourage addressing why you wish to transfer or visit. Please note that everything in your personal statementmust be entirely your own original work and may not be produced in any part with ChatGPT or any other artificial intelligence or large language model system.

    Optional Supplemental Statement - Recognizing that applicants may have more to share beyond their required personal statement and other contents of their application file, we offer this option to submit a supplemental statement. This statement is not required and no applicant will be penalized for choosing not to submit one.

    Richmond Law believes that a legal education is more than just learning the law. Diverse life experiences, viewpoints, and values inside and outside of the classroom will enhance discussions, challenge students in their own perspective, and ultimately prepare them better for their legal career. Please consider sharing significant life experiences, challenges, perspectives, or identities that have shaped you as a person and may influence your contributions to our community and the legal profession.

    Note that any written submissions must be entirely your own original work and may not be produced in any part with ChatGPT or any other artificial intelligence or large language model system. If you choose to submit a supplemental statement, please include it in the appropriate "Attachments" section.

    Addendum - An addendum must be submitted to address any legal, character and fitness, or educational issues associated with your application. If there are multiple issues, each should be addressed in its own addendum. Brief optional addenda may also be useful to explain LSAT score discrepancies, grade inconsistencies, gaps in work history, or to provide context for reviews on any topicyou feel is relevant to their decision. There is no required format.

    Other Statements - Richmond Law considers whether a student comes from an underprivileged socioeconomic background, is a first-generation college student, has a disability, or is from a group underrepresented in the legal profession. We encourage any additional statements you wish to provide.

    TOEFL Waiver for International Applicants - International applicants are expected to demonstrate fluency in the English language. Candidates for whom their native language is not English are required to take either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) exam.  All scores must be submitted through LSAC; paper copies of scores are not accepted.


    International applicants who believe they are fluent in English or have completed their undergraduate (or other advanced degrees) at an institution where the primary language of instruction is English may request a waiver of the English language testing requirement.  Applicants must submit a written statement indicating their level of proficiency and how they achieved it, i.e., either through school instruction or work experience in an English-speaking professional position.

    GRE Takers - Applicants who were admitted to law school with a GRE score in lieu of the LSAT, must submit both their GRE score(s) and an explanation of why they took the GRE in place of the LSAT.  Both total and individual scores must be reported.

    Academic Course Descriptions - Transfer students must submit an official course description for all law courses that you have completed or will complete prior to enrolling at the University of Richmond School of Law. These course descriptions are required to have your first year law transcript assessed for transfer credit. They will be used in determining which course credits will transfer in and which degree requirements have been met. This will help you and your academic advisors plan your 2L course schedule.

  • Character & Fitness

    State Bar Character and Fitness - An applicant’s character and fitness to practice law must be established as a prerequisite for licensure. When you apply to sit for the bar exam, you are required to provide relevant, detailed background information that will be carefully evaluated by the bar examiners in the state in which you apply. Any information discovered during this background investigation that negatively reflects on your character and fitness to practice law may be treated as just cause for further analysis.

    As part of the process, all applicants must disclose any information regarding events both before and during law school. The State Bar’s Character and Fitness Committee will compare your answers to its questions with those provided in your law school application. Any discrepancies can result in adverse consequences, so the information you provide on your law school application must be accurate and complete.  Should the committee find that your responses on the law school application are inconsistent with those provided on the bar exam application, the Board of Bar Examiners will likely initiate a more intensive review of your file. Should this review occur, you may be subject to sanctions, including revocation of law school admission and/or a delay in certification of fitness.

  • Loans

    For additional information on loans, check our Financial Aid Office website and contact them at finaid@richmond.edu or 804-289-8438.

    Educational Loans
    The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is the application for all federal aid at the University of Richmond School of Law. Ideally, the FAFSA should be received by the federal processor by February 25 or as soon thereafter as possible (FAFSA available for submission on October 1). The FAFSA may be submitted online here.

    Parental information is not required on the FAFSA for law students. Our FAFSA code is 003744.

  • Summer Fellowships

    Incoming transfer students working in qualifying public sector positions are eligible for funding through the School of Law’s Summer Public Service Fellowship Program. Qualifying public sector employment is unpaid, law-related work for a government agency, public interest organization or the judiciary. To qualify for a full stipend of $4,000, you must work full-time for at least eight weeks between May and August. Note that you do not need to complete an Intent to Participate form, but all other guidelines apply. If you do not enroll in the School of Law in the fall, you will be required to repay the summer stipend. 

    You may contact the Career Development Office with questions regarding the program.

  • Journals, Clinics, & Moot Court
    Once admitted and deposited, all transfer students are eligible to pursue acceptance to any of the journals, competition boards (such as Moot Court), and clinics.
  • Policy Prohibiting Discrimination

    The University of Richmond prohibits discrimination and harassment against applicants, students, faculty, or staff on the basis of race, religion, national or ethnic origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, disability, status as a veteran, or any classification protected by local, state, or federal law.

    As a recipient of federal funds, the University complies with federal laws prohibiting discrimination, including Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX). Title IX provides that: “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”

    Admissions applications will be reviewed in a holistic approach and decisions will not discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, national origin, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, age, or disability, or military status. 

    You are assured both by school policy and by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act that the information will be confidential and accessible only to school officials, government agencies, and others with a legitimate educational interest in this information. 

  • Admissions Policy

    Richmond Law seeks to admit highly qualified applicants who have demonstrated the potential to complete not only a rigorous course of legal study but also possess the promise of contributions to the law school, the legal profession, and the broader community. Using a holistic review process, the Admissions Committee seeks to admit a student body of wide-ranging backgrounds, education, and experience.  In so doing, the Committee seeks to bring a variety of skills and perspectives to the classroom and campus community.

    In determining an applicant’s suitability for the program, the Admissions Committee reviews academic factors such as the candidate’s GPA, transcripts, undergraduate institution, and the quality of the applicant’s prior academic experience. Emphasis is also placed on the applicant’s capacity for law school study, as reflected through appropriate evaluative mechanisms, including but not limited to standardized tests and writing samples.  In addition, the Committee recognizes that other factors such as location, ethnicity, leadership qualities, challenges overcome, and work experience can contribute to an applicant’s likelihood for success in law school.  The Committee further acknowledges that such factors can affect the applicant’s ability to constructively impact the legal profession as well as the society at large.

    Character and Fitness

    Applicants to Richmond Law are required to complete all questions in the Character and Fitness section.  Applicants have a continuing obligation to update their responses to these questions if the answers change, even after their application is complete. 

    Admission Decisions

    Once an application has been marked complete, candidates can expect a timely decision, usually within six to eight weeks. On occasion, some applications may be held for future review.

    Offers of Admission & Deferral

    Offers of Admission are good for the year in which the offer is made. An applicant who chooses not to enroll for the year in which the admission offer is made may reapply the following year by completing an updated application. Admission in one year does not, however, guarantee admission in subsequent years, and applicants are considered holistically each year.

    Applicants may request a deferral of enrollment by emailing the Associate Dean of Admissions. Deferrals are evaluated on a case-by-case basis, and applicants must provide a statement explaining their reasons for requesting a deferral. Deferments may be granted for up to two years for military service, or other recognized paid service work such as Teach for America, Peace Corps, etc.

    Applicants who are not granted deferral may reapply for admission in subsequent year(s) and will be considered with the applicant pool for that year.

  • GDPR Statement
    In compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the University of Richmond has a legitimate interest in collecting information needed to evaluate an applicant’s personal, educational, and work background in order to make admissions decisions and otherwise process such applications. The University of Richmond General Data Protection Privacy Notice can be found at https://policy.richmond.edu/documents/policy-pdfs/Public/Information-Services/general_data_privacy_regulation_notice.pdf.
  • Licensure & Certification Discolsures

    The University of Richmond School of Law programs for professions that require licensure or certification are intended to prepare the student for Virginia licensure and certification requirements. Admission into any 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, not controlled by or affiliated with the University of Richmond School of Law, and licensure and certification requirements can change at any time.

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