Transfer Applicants

Each year, roughly 200 students from a broad range of law schools apply, and typically 10 to 15 are accepted. Transfer applications must be submitted between May 1 and July 1 of the year in which admission is sought. All applicants must have finished the equivalent of one year of a J.D. program at another ABA-approved law school and meet the other eligibility requirements for transfer applicants. The admission process for transfer applicants is not rolling; all decisions are released during the second and third weeks of July.

The online application for Transfer Admission is available at

Yale Law School offers an abbreviated transfer application for individuals who were either admitted to Yale Law School or offered a place on our waitlist as first-year applicants. "Fast Track" applicants do not need to submit a personal statement or 250-word essay with their applications, are required to submit only one letter of recommendation from a law school faculty member, and need to pay a reduced application fee of $50. If you would like a copy of the "Fast Track" transfer application, please send an e-mail to with your full name and LSAC account number to request an application form.

Transfer applicants to Yale Law School must possess:

  • A bachelor's degree (or the equivalent) before matriculating at Yale Law School
  • An outstanding record at another U.S. law school

Applicants in special programs in U.S. law schools who have completed the first year of law school while completing the requirements for a bachelor's degree may be considered for transfer.

Students at foreign law schools are not eligible for consideration as transfer candidates. Students at foreign law schools may apply for admission to the first-year class and may be eligible for advanced standing in unusual circumstances.

Transfer applications will be considered only between the applicant’s first and second years of law school. Transfer students must complete at least four semesters years at Yale Law School.

Transfer credit will be considered only for work done at U.S. law schools that are approved by the American Bar Association and only if the student maintained a weighted average grade of not less than B (or the equivalent) for all work in that school. A maximum of 28 units will be transferred from that school toward the J.D. requirements at Yale Law School. No credit will be granted for work done through correspondence or online courses.

Visiting Student Applicants

In special circumstances, a student enrolled in a J.D. program at another ABA-approved U.S. law school may apply for admission on a full-time, non-degree basis. Visiting students may attend Yale Law School for a semester or a maximum of one year, earning credit toward a degree at their own institutions. An applicant must have completed his or her first year of law school before enrolling at YLS.

Students applying as visiting students should complete the J.D. application in the paper format and send it in an envelope marked “Visiting Student” with a $60 application fee. Please e-mail the Admissions Office to request an application.

A complete application for a visiting student contains, in addition to the application, a cover letter explaining the applicant’s special circumstances, a law school transcript, a CAS report, two letters of recommendation from law school professors, dean's certifications from all degree programs in which the applicant has been enrolled, and a letter from the applicant’s degree-granting law school giving permission for the applicant to earn credit for course work at Yale. The Admissions Committee considers past academic performance as well as special circumstances when reviewing applications. Decisions are made on visiting student applications on a rolling basis.