Students in the LL.M. program may apply to transfer to the J.D. program following their first semester of study. Students who successfully complete the J.D. program following their transfer may sit for the Florida Bar or any other Bar in the United States and become eligible for employment here in Miami and throughout the country.
The applications for the LL.M. and J.D. Programs are comparable, with the major exception that the LSAT exam is required for all J.D. applicants.
A separate admissions committee will review your application and determine your eligibility to enter the J.D. program. The admissions committee takes into consideration such factors as your TOEFL score, your LSAT score, and your grade point average in the classes that you take with J.D. students while in the LL.M. program. In addition, because performance in basic US law courses has been shown to be the best predictor of success in the JD program and Bar exam, the committee will take a close look at the character of the courses you take during your LLM year. It is strongly recommended that LLM students thinking about transferring into the JD program take at least one 1L class and/or one basic US law course such as BA, Administrative law, Constitutional Law, Commercial Law, Trust & Estates, US Income Tax Law, Evidence or Substantive Criminal Law during each semester of their LLM program.
LLM students recently admitted to transfer into the JD program have had TOEFL scores of at least 600.
If you are admitted to the J.D. program, you may be awarded advanced standing credits for law courses taken in the degree-granting foreign law school. Generally, students whose first law degree is obtained in a civil law country may expect to receive up to 16 advanced standing credits, while students whose first law degree is from a common law country, may receive up to 29 advanced standing credits. In addition, students who compile a strong record in their LL.M. coursework may forego the LL.M. degree and transfer most of the credits earned during the LL.M. program towards the J.D. degree.
One benefit of starting in the LL.M. program is that it gives you a chance to decide if you are really interested in returning to law school for the entire J.D. program. It should also provide you with a more gradual transition to law study than the intensity of the first year J.D. curriculum. You will be able to strengthen your English skills and become acclimated to the culture of Miami, and then decide whether the J.D. is really consistent with your long-term goals.
If you are a current LL.M. student interested in transferring to the J.D. program, please contact the Office of International Graduate Law Programs for more information by e-mailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jessica Carvalho Morris, director of the International Graduate Law Programs, has appeared numerous times recently on Spanish-language television newscasts discussing the legal ramifications of high-profile issues.