Thank you for your interest in BU Law’s LLM Program. This set of instructions contains detailed information on how to apply to our programs, specifically for lawyers educated outside of the United States. For lawyers educated in the US, please see our domestic applicant instructions. We look forward to hearing from you.


Candidates to our residential LLM programs must hold a first degree in law, or its equivalent, from an accredited or comparably recognized law school or law faculty outside the United States. Admission is highly competitive and depends to a great extent on the demonstration of outstanding ability in previous law studies. While work experience is not required, it is highly valued.

Non-Degree Students

The Graduate Tax Program and the Graduate Program in Banking and Financial Law, while designed to lead to the LLM degree, will accept a limited number of highly qualified non-degree students to take selected courses. Non-degree seeking students must follow the same admission procedure as degree-seeking LLM candidates.


The Program Director and/or Assistant/Associate Director interviews all qualified applicants by phone (or in person, if practical). The appropriate graduate program office will notify applicants of the time and date of scheduled interviews.

Admissions Decisions

We make admissions decisions on a rolling basis. Although the official deadline for Fall semester enrollment is April 15th, priority will be given to applications completed prior to this date. Upon notification of acceptance, a nonrefundable deposit of US $500.00 is required to hold your place in the class. If the deposit is not paid within the specified time, the acceptance will be canceled.

LSAC Credential Assembly Service

We strongly recommend (but do not require) that international applicants register with the LLM International Transcript Authentication and Evaluation Service provided by the Law School Admission Council (LSAC). This service collects and authenticates the academic records, letters of recommendation, and English proficiency scores of international lawyers who are applying for admission to US LLM programs, and sends reports to participating LLM programs to which these lawyers have applied. Because applicants will need to obtain only one set of official academic transcripts in order to make them available for all applications to participating law schools, the service should save them time and money.

Passport and Visa Information

International applicants who are currently in the United States must submit copies of all current visa documents. Applicants who are accepted for admission will ordinarily be issued the Form I-20 (needed to secure the F-1 student visa) directly from Boston University. For additional information concerning passport or visa requirements, international applicants should contact:

Graduate & International Programs Office
Boston University School of Law
765 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, Massachusetts 02215

Center for English Language Orientation Program (CELOP)

The Boston University Center for English Language and Orientation Programs (CELOP) offers a number of intensive language courses, including a six-week pre-LLM “Legal English” program for international students who have been admitted to an LLM program. We encourage all LLM candidates who received their first degrees in law from countries other than the United States, Canada, or the United Kingdom to seek early preparation for their studies by attending a CELOP summer program. CELOP also offers programs in the fall which may be taken on a part-time basis (see Three-Semester LLM/CELOP Program below). In certain cases, we may offer full-time admission on the condition that the applicant successfully complete one of the CELOP summer programs before fall enrollment. Students should be aware that participation in a CELOP program will increase their expenses. For more information on CELOP programs, visit CELOP.

Bar Admission

It is generally expected that international students enrolled in LLM programs in the United States will return to their home countries after they complete their studies. Most states in the United States will allow only individuals who have earned a Juris Doctor degree from a law school accredited by the American Bar Association to take their bar examinations. However, New York, Massachusetts, and a few other states do allow some foreign-trained lawyers from abroad who have received LLM degrees from Boston University to take bar examinations. Each of the fifty states of the United States has its own criteria and procedures for admitting lawyers to practice, and these criteria and procedures change from time to time. It is essential that a foreign-trained lawyer who wishes to practice in this country directly contact the lawyer-licensing authority in the state or jurisdiction in which he or she expects to be located. Individuals can also request a copy of the Comprehensive Guide to Bar Admission Requirements from:

The National Conference of Bar Examiners
ABA Order Fulfillment Department
750 North Lake Shore Drive
Chicago, Illinois 60611
Phone 312-988-5522

Bar admissions information is also available from the American Bar Association.

Transfer to JD Program for Foreign-Trained LLM Candidates

Students enrolled in the American Law, Banking and Financial Law, Intellectual Property and Taxation LLM programs may apply to the JD program as transfer students during the spring semester of their LLM year and—if they are admitted—may satisfy up to one-third of their JD credits through their LLM coursework consistent with American Bar Association standards. This means they may be able to complete the JD program with two additional years of study. Transfer students who matriculate into the JD program need to complete all the requirements of the JD program. Transfer applicants need to take the LSAT and will be judged in comparison to all other JD transfer candidates. Candidates should not expect preferential treatment by the JD Admissions Committee simply by virtue of attending the LLM program at BU Law. Admission is not guaranteed. For fall semester transfer candidates, application forms and fees are due to the Office of JD Admissions by June 1 and completed files with all supporting documentation are due by August 1. LLM students may take the LSAT as late as June for fall enrollment.

Equal Opportunity Policy

Boston University prohibits discrimination against any individual on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, physical or mental disability, sexual orientation, marital, parental, or veteran status. This policy extends to all rights, privileges, programs and activities, including admissions, financial assistance, employment, housing, athletics and educational programs. Boston University recognizes that nondiscrimination does not ensure that equal opportunity is a reality. The University therefore will continue to take affirmative action to promote equal opportunity for all students, applicants and employees. Inquiries regarding the application of this policy should be addressed to:

Assistant Vice President for Human Resources
25 Buick Street
Boston, MA 02215
Phone 617-353-4477

Contact Us

Please direct all correspondence, inquiries, and application materials to:

Boston University School of Law
Graduate & International Programs Office
765 Commonwealth Avenue, Suite 1003
Boston, MA 02215
Phone 617-353-5323