The J.D. Admissions Office recognizes that undocumented or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) students may face unique challenges when applying to law school due to their immigration status. For this reason, we want to clarify that a student’s immigration status does not factor into admission decisions and financial aid eligibility at Harvard Law School.
While our application components and standards for admission remain the same for all applicants, we would like to provide undocumented and DACA students with tailored application advice and resources.
LSAC and HLS Application Fee:
According to LSAC, students who have received temporary protected status and have been granted or applied for deferred action under DACA are eligible for the LSAC Fee-Waiver Program. Please refer to the LSAC Fee Waiver webpage for details on how to apply. While the LSAC Fee Waiver Form is separate from the HLS Fee Waiver Request Form, HLS will automatically waive the application fee for LSAC fee waiver recipients. To request a need-based fee waiver directly from HLS, please complete the Fee Waiver Request Form.
HLS Financial Aid:
HLS is committed to providing need-based financial aid, and we do not award any merit-based financial aid to admitted J.D. students. The Harvard Law School Preferred Lender List is a distinctive component of Harvard’s financial aid programming. Undocumented and DACA students can bridge any gap in the cost of attendance by taking advantage of the Preferred Lender List without obtaining a U.S. co-applicant or demonstrating proof of citizenship.
Harvard Community & Resources
Undocumented at Harvard
Undocumented at Harvard is a university-wide organization that offers resources to undocumented Harvard community members. Along with clarifying Harvard’s admissions policies, Undocumented at Harvard provides community updates and legal resources.
Student Voices: Mitchell Santos Toledo
Meet Mitchell, who found community at HLS with La Alianza, the Harvard Immigration Project, First Class, and many other student organizations.
Student Voices: Carlos Gonzalez Sierra
Meet Carlos, a DACA recepient who is an advocate for immigrant rights.
Student Spotlight: Harvard Law student’s nonprofit receives Harvard Innovation Labs award
First Gen Empower, founded by Arabi Hassan ’23, enables first-generation, low-income, and immigrant high school and college students to pursue their dreams.
Harvard Gazette: Supreme Court decision shielding DACA draws relief, celebration
Read the Harvard Gazette article on Harvard’s commitment to protecting undocumented students at Harvard and beyond.
Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinic
The Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program (HIRCP) offers free legal services to the Harvard community and the Greater Boston area. If you are a Harvard Law School student, you can join HIRCP to gain practical experience in immigration law and engage in legal advocacy. As a member of the Harvard community, you can receive free legal consultation from HIRCP on any immigration-related issues.
Resource Guide for Undocumented Law School Applicants
Immigrants Rising, a nonprofit organization, provides resources and support to undocumented students.
Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinic FAQs
Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinic provides immigration assistance to the Harvard community and beyond.