LLM Class of 2009

Transferring from an LL.M. to a J.D.

By: Ruilu Wang (LL.M. ’09 & J.D. ’11)

Ruilu Wang and her LL.M. classmates at graduation

Ruilu Wang and her LL.M. classmates at graduation

As we all know, the LL.M. program is short and lasts only for one year.  Every LL.M. candidate may have to consider what to do after graduation just at the beginning of the LL.M. program.

Making the decision of transfer

A large number of LL.M. candidates may think one year of study is too short for them to reach their goal of learning American law.  One of the options after graduation is to become a J.D. candidate.  Then you will have more years and a comprehensive understanding of American law.  LL.M. graduates can apply for another law school and start a brand new J.D. program, but that would take 3 more years.  Some great law schools provide an option of transferring from the LL.M. program to the J.D. program within the same law school.  Then transferred J.D. candidates can transfer all the credit hours they have taken as an LL.M. student to the J.D. program.   Therefore, generally, a transferred J.D. candidate only needs two more years in the J.D. program.  Wake Forest started this great option in 2008 and opens a gate to newly arrived LL.M. students.

 Preparing for the transfer

Before you file your application for transferring, think thoroughly about your decision.  After making the decision of being a J.D. candidate, you have to start preparing for that when you are taking all the courses as a LL.M. student if you want to continue the study directly after graduation from the LL.M. program.  Of course, if LL.M. graduates also can apply to transfer some years later after gaining some work experience. Continue reading »