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How to Get Into NYU Law

August 18, 2023
7 min read


Reviewed by:

David Merson

Former Head of Pre-Law Office, Northeastern University, & Admissions Officer, Brown University

Reviewed: 08/18/23

If you have a passion for justice and want to join a top-ranking law school to kick-start your law career, read on to learn how to get into NYU Law and stand out as an applicant.

Known as “an intellectual powerhouse,” the New York University (NYU) Law School offers comprehensive legal education programs that assure graduates are well-prepared for their future law careers. 

Ranking as the seventh-best law school in the United States and the number one law school for corporate, criminal, international, and tax law, NYU Law has established quite a reputation for itself as one of the most prestigious law schools in the United States.  

If you’d like to join this top-tier university but don’t know where to start, this guide will explain the application process. Below we’ll discuss NYU Law School’s admission requirements and provide helpful tips to do well on your NYU application essays.

How to get into NYU Law

Programs Offered 

Offering a diverse curriculum, NYU Law has various law programs for students interested in legal education:

  • JD Program: This is a traditional three-year Juris Doctor degree
  • JD Dual Degrees: Students can combine their JD with various other programs, including a Master of Laws (LLM) in the specialty they would like to practice, a Master of Arts (MA), a Master of Business Administration (MBA), a Master of Public Administration (MPA), a Master of Urban Planning (MUP), or a Master of Social Work (MSW)
  • LLM Programs: NYU Law offers graduate LLM programs for students wishing to specialize in a certain type of law
  • JSD Program: This program allows students to complete an advanced Doctor of Juridical Science

Once you’ve decided which program is best for you, the next step is to figure out how to apply.

NYU Law School Requirements

NYU Law Application Requirements

To apply to NYU Law School, candidates, including LLM applicants, must submit the following required materials: 

  • A Baccalaureate Degree
  • Application Form
  • Standardized Test Scores: You are required to take either the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) or GRE.
  • Credential Assembly Service (CAS): This summarizes all of your undergraduate academic work and transcripts.
  • Two Letters of Recommendation
  • Personal Statement
  • Resume
  • Supplemental Information: This is optional but can be an opportunity to provide insight into your application; you can explain discrepancies like multiple LSAT scores, or unusual circumstances that may have affected your academic performance.

In addition to these materials, JSD applicants must also submit:

  • A sample research paper: This can be a published paper, a research paper written for seminar credit, or a paper written for your application to this program
  • A proposal of study: You must submit a dissertation of 3,000 words or fewer to state the research questions you would like to explore, review current literature in the field, identify the contributions this research will make, state your methods of conducting research, and list any difficulties you may encounter.

As you can tell, a lot is required from you during the application process! To avoid stressing over each component, try gathering these requirements well before applications begin. For instance, many students complete their LSAT while still in their undergraduate program!

NYU Law GPA: What You Need

As a prestigious school, the NYU Law School GPA requirements are quite high. While NYU Law does not specify a minimum GPA, they tell prospective students to view their 2021 class profile to find the NYU Law average GPA. The range of these applicants’ GPAs was 3.73 to 3.93.

NYU Law School LSAT: What You Need

Similar to the GPA requirements, the NYU Law average LSAT scores are high. The 2021 class profile shows admitted applicants had scores in the range of 170-174! Considering the highest LSAT score one can achieve is 180, these NYU Law LSAT scores are both impressive and daunting. 

Applicants should create a comprehensive study schedule for this test and ensure they understand how to answer the different sections of the test. 

There are also resources available to help you get to these high percentile ranks. Juris Education offers comprehensive LSAT prep and can help you get the LSAT score you need; they’ve helped 100% of their students increase their LSAT scores!

NYU GRE Requirements

Students who do not want to write the LSAT may write the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) instead (but cannot submit both). The GRE measures the overall academic readiness of students for graduate schools, like law school. 

The average NYU GRE score is around 328. GRE scores are often compared to LSAT scores and can be converted using the GRE Law School Comparison tool provided by ETS, the administrators of the exam. A score of 328 on the GRE converts to an LSAT score of about 169.

Letters of Recommendation

NYU requires all students to submit two letters of recommendation as part of the admission process. These letters are submitted directly to the Law School Admission Council (LSAC).  

Prospective students should have at least one academic letter from a faculty member and one from a supervisor if relevant. NYU mainly requires these letters to be written by people who can “attest to your ability to succeed in a rigorous law school program.”


It might sound strange to attach a resume to your application, but NYU Law uses these resumes to gain insight into your experiences, interests, and skills. This resume should be one to two pages and list your post-high school education and work experience.

With the expectation that NYU Law students have great multitasking and time-management skills, if you have any three-month period where you were not employed or in school, NYU asks you to detail why on this resume.

NYU Law Essays 

Don’t let the GPA and test score requirements for NYU Law prevent you from applying! 

NYU specifically states they consider applicants “beyond the numbers” and look at students on the whole. This is where the personal statements and application essays come in; these written pieces are essential components of the admission process and require the utmost care.

NYU Law School Personal Statement

As you consider how to get into NYU Law, you must also consider how to write an excellent and genuine personal statement. 

While NYU leaves the content and length of the statements to the applicants’ discretion, this statement should be around two pages , double-spaced, and in 12-point font. This comes out to roughly 600-650 words.

Personal statements for LLM applicants must be 500 words or fewer. LLM applicants applying for a specialization in Legal Theory must also address their main field(s) of interest and some of the potential research questions or projects they’re interested in.

As this personal statement replaces interviews, it is important applicants stand out and intrigue the admissions committee. This personal statement can set you apart from thousands of other applicants with similar scores and qualifications.

Additionally, it is important this statement is meticulously written. Law students and lawyers are expected to have excellent written communication skills!

NYU suggests the following tips to consider when beginning your personal statement:

  1. Ask yourself why you want to go to law school
  2. Ask yourself why you want to go to NYU in particular
  3. Read through past students’ personal statements and ask yourself how you can stand out from them
  4. Be personal and focus on yourself
  5. Tell an interesting story where you are the main character

What to Avoid In Your Personal Statements:

Here is a list of things to avoid when writing your NYU Law School personal statement:

Clichés: To make sure you stand out, don’t repeat the same cliches the admissions committee has heard countless times. This means you should avoid overusing quotes or opening lines. So, if you’ve begun your statement with “Gandhi once said…,” or “Since I was (insert absurdly young age) …” you’ll need to start over.

Tip: Open your essay with part of a story, preferably the most interesting part. This will grab your readers’ attention, and you can spend the rest of the essay explaining the context and relevance of the story.

Vagueness: Tying in to the first tip, you want to avoid making vague generalizations with little authentic meaning. For instance, don’t say you want to pursue law to change the world – be more specific! Pick a specific issue in the world that you are passionate about and focus on it. 

Reiterating Your Resume: You already have to submit a resume as part of the application process. Use this space to go beyond your resume and really focus on a unique experience that helped you grow.

A Pity Party: While you may write about adversity you faced, how you grew because of it, and how it inspired your interest in law, make sure you don’t only focus on the negative aspects. You aren’t trying to gain sympathy but interest. You want to clearly demonstrate your perseverance and dedication, traits law school students need!

Other NYU Law Essays

NYU offers applicants the opportunity to write optional essays to supplement their applications. While these essays are not part of the NYU Law School requirements, they are worth considering.

Like the personal statements, these essays can showcase your abilities, talents, and interest, which can help you become a more attractive candidate.

Diversity Statement

This essay allows applicants to highlight their unique perspectives and understanding of the world. Many students that write diversity statements focus on their race, sexual orientation, gender, or ethnicity. However, these are not the only forms of diversity applicants can write about.

If there is any factor that makes you a non-traditional applicant, you can write about it! Take overcoming great adversity, a career change, being a mature student, or even having a unique hobby as an example. 

This statement should be short, about one page, double-spaced, and written in 12-point font.


This optional essay allows applicants to discuss reasons for any weaknesses in their application. NYU specifies that these must be legitimate reasons, not excuses. Some reasons to write an addendum are:

  • A long gap in your resume or education
  • Academic misconduct
  • A criminal record
  • A lower LSAT score but high GPA
  • A very low grade or withdrawal from a course
  • A poor semester in an otherwise good year
  • A low GPA
  • Financial circumstances that caused a lower GPA due to less time for education

It is important to note that, unlike your personal statement, this addendum should not evoke emotion or contain arguments. It must focus solely on reason and facts and clearly and candidly explain your circumstances.

If there are no obvious weaknesses in your application, you shouldn’t write an addendum. Don’t use this essay as extra space to boast about your accomplishments or go into further detail about your personal statement.

NYU JD Admission Statistics

To give you a better idea of how to get into NYU Law School, here are some NYU Law School Admissions statistics and the NYU Law entering class profile. 

You can compare your own scores against this NYU Law profile to gain better insight into your likelihood of gaining admission. However, remember not to base your decision solely on this profile! Your supplementary essays can compensate for lower GPAs or test scores.

NYU Admissions statistics
Source: NYU

Employment Statistics

Considering a full-time academic year at NYU Law costs $73,414, it is worth mentioning the impressive employment statistics of NYU graduates.  

NYU law school employment stats
NYU law school employment stats salary
Source: NYU Law School

NYU Law School Acceptance Rate

Based on its high admission scores and prestigious reputation, you’re probably assuming NYU is extremely difficult to get into. While it is a very competitive school, the NYU Law acceptance rate is surprisingly high at approximately 16%! 

While this rate is still quite low, it is much higher than other elite schools’ acceptance rates. For instance, Yale Law’s acceptance rate is 9.72%, Stanford’s is 10.48%, and Harvard comes in at the lowest at only 6.8%.

NYU Law Early Decision Acceptance Rate

While NYU does not release acceptance rates for their Early Decision (ED) program, they stress ED applicants are held to the same standards as regular decision applicants and do not benefit from a significant advantage.

However, you may have a slightly better chance of acceptance because you’ll be competing with fewer applicants and may also be considered the second time around with the regular applicants! 

To be an early applicant, you must complete your application by November 15th. The regular deadline is February 15th.

How Hard is it to Get into NYU Law?

To put it bluntly – it is very difficult. However, it has promising acceptance rates and looks at applicants’ experiences and interests rather than just their scores, giving diverse students a fair chance of getting into NYU Law. 

NYU Law School Application Deadline & Process  

The following is a timeline of the NYU Law School application deadlines:

Date What’s Due
September 1st The online application opens
October The last month for early admission applicants to take the LSAT or GRE

November 15th
The NYU Law early decision deadline when applications should be filed and completed for early consideration
December Early admission applicants will get their decision notifications
January The last month for regular admission applicants to take the LSAT or GRE
February 15th Deadline for regular applicants to file and complete their application
April Regular admission applicants will get their decision notifications

To ensure you get into NYU Law on time, you’ll want to make note of these important dates!

How to Get Into NYU Law: FAQs 

If you still have questions about getting into NYU Law, read on to find the answers!

1. Does NYU Have a Good Law Program?

Yes! NYU Law is ranked as one of the top ten law schools in the United States. It offers a diverse and extensive curriculum to its students to prepare them for their legal careers.

2. What LSAT Score Do I Need for NYU?

The LSAT score range for the admitted 2021 applicants was 170-174. Interested applicants should aim to score within this range or be willing to provide a legitimate explanation for significantly lower LSAT scores in the optional addendum essay.

3. What GPA is Required for NYU Law?

The GPA range for the admitted 2021 applicants was 3.73 – 3.93. Interested applicants should aim to maintain a GPA within this range or be willing to provide a legitimate explanation for a significantly lower GPA in the optional addendum essay.

4. Does NYU Conduct Interviews As Part of the Application Process?

No, they use personal statements instead of interviews.

5. Do Students Require Undergraduate Prerequisites to Be Admitted to NYU Law?

No, but the committee appreciates students that have taken courses in a broad range of categories, some of which are analytical and others that are more reading and research-based.

6. If I Take the LSAT Multiple Times, Which Score Will the Committee Consider?

The committee requires the submission of all LSAT scores. If an applicant wants the committee to consider a score aberrant, they must write about why in the optional addendum essay.  

Law School In the Big Apple: A Summary 

After going over how to get into NYU Law, its admission requirements, and how hard it is to gain admission, hopefully, you feel less overwhelmed about the application process. 

NYU Law, situated in the big apple, truly holds up to this nickname as one of the country's biggest and best institutions. Gaining admission to this prestigious school will thoroughly prepare you for your legal career and give you the right resources and experience to excel!

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