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What If You Get Rejected At Law Schools

published February 27, 2013

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If you've been able to apply under an accelerated admissions program, you should know the results within six weeks. Your other admissions and rejections will trickle in throughout the winter. The old high school guidance counselor's principle that a thin envelope indicates a rejection and a fat envelope indicates an acceptance remains generally true, but there are exceptions. Even acceptances sometimes come in thin envelopes nowadays; a packet of registration forms and leaflets may be sent separately. You should know the fate of all your applications by the first of April.
What If You Get Rejected At Law Schools

But what if you weren't?

It could happen. The future is never entirely controllable. Perhaps you ran into a bad placement year. When law schools receive an unexpectedly large number of applications, they raise their standards. Candidates who may have been admitted in other years are rejected. Or perhaps your record was not as good as you thought it was.

Waiting Lists, Conditional Admissions, and Appeals

Waiting Lists

Instead of being rejected outright, you may be notified that you've been placed on a waiting list. You will be offered admission only if other previously accepted candidates decide not to attend.

Being on a waiting list is a nightmare. You will be dangling, unable to make firm plans, well into the spring, and perhaps the summer. You'll hear stories about applicants admitted from waiting lists a few days before fall classes were to begin. At least some of these stories are true. But these late admittees are fortunate compared to wait-listed applicants who are never admitted and who wind up at the end of the summer without alternative employment.

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