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Overview

The J.D. (Juris Doctor) at Harvard Law School is a three-year program of study that first gives students the intellectual foundations for legal study and practice, and then gives students the opportunity to focus their studies on areas of particular interest through advanced classes, clinics, and legal writing projects.

Eligibility

All applicants must hold or expect to hold a bachelor’s degree (or international equivalent) prior to August of the year for which they apply to enter (except in cases where all requirements are met prior to September and degree conferral occurs after September).

Applicants may apply for admission to Harvard Law School through the regular J.D. application no more than three times. Applications submitted via the Junior Deferral Program (JDP) and the J.D. Transfer pathways do not count towards this cap.

Ineligible candidates who submit an application will not be considered for admission and will not receive an application fee reimbursement.

Application Timeline

  • Apply for Admission

    The application for Fall Term 2023 enrollment is now available through the Law School Admission Council (LSAC) website.

  • Submission Deadline

    The application for Fall Term 2023 enrollment closes on February 20, 2023 at 11:59 p.m. ET.

  • Decision Release

    The J.D. Admissions Office will begin releasing decisions for Fall Term 2023 applicants in January 2023. We aim to notify all applicants of their admission decision by early April.

    Applications are reviewed approximately in the order in which they are completed. We appreciate your patience with the process of providing individual consideration to each application.

    Visit our blog for more information on important dates for the 2022–2023 application cycle.

Application Toolkit

We compiled the application resources, information, and advice from across our website to help you put together an application that best reflects your abilities and readiness for Harvard Law School.

Application Toolkit

Students walking on the HLS campus with the Red and Green flagpole banners in the background

Recruitment Events & Information Sessions

Learn more about the law school admissions process and HLS community through our online resources and in-person events this fall.

Connect with Admissions

1L Class Profile

Meet the Class of 2025

HLS 1L Profile and Facts

J.D. Admissions Blog

  • From Community College to Harvard Law School

    Community college students form an important part of the Harvard Law School community. Meet Josh and Saeed, two students at HLS who attended community college before transferring to a four-year institution. We hope this post inspires more community college graduates to consider HLS. Josh and Saeed, tell us about your path to Harvard Law. Saeed:

    January 31, 2023

  • Updated Timeline for the 2023 Application Cycle

    It’s been an eventful week in our office, to put it mildly. With our first batch of decisions out, I thought it might be helpful for us to update our expectations for the 2023 Application Cycle Timeline.

    January 12, 2023

  • Should you include a “why Harvard” statement in your application?

    Each year at this time, we receive questions about how applicants should express interest in Harvard Law School. Include a “Why Harvard” essay? Talk about HLS in the personal statement? Maybe an addendum on this topic? The answer to all these questions is the same: no, that’s not necessary.  Let’s start with the separate “why

    December 2, 2022

  • Launching to 1L: How to Make the Most Out of a Law School Event

    In our blog series, Launching to 1L, we offer applicants advice on navigating the application process from beginning to end. To continue this series, we will discuss how to prepare for law-related online and in-person events. Associate Director of Admissions, Courtney McMann Remember that prospective student events, Q&As, and forums are for you. “This an

    November 8, 2022