Law school transfer!!

<p>Can you transfer after 1-2 years at a law school in one state, to a school in another state and still graduate, and still take the second state's bar? What are the consequences of tranferring??</p>

<p>You can only try to transfer after the first year. (DS is transferring.) Negative consequences: Less financial incentive since transferees aren't eligible for all of the scholarships that 1Ls get. If you've done well at your current law school, you will lose the professorial contacts you've made. You may be in the middle of the 2L job and internship process which begins before school starts, so you could miss out on your current school's offerings and might not be eligible for all of your transfer school's interviews. You might be able to try to write-on to your new school's law review, but you lose law review at your first school. Socially, you have to start all over. Your GPA usually doesn't transfer. Some of your classes may not transfer or you may need to take other classes as requirements, so you could lose some elective credits (which could affect your ability to get a certificate in a specialty, or mean that you have to take a heavier load). You may be ineligible or otherwise be unable to get into clinics or other popular classes that are over-registered at your new school. Moot Court teams may already be established. You don't find out about most transfer acceptances until mid to late July, so it could affect your housing plans. If you've been trying to establish a state residency to achieve a tuition saving at a public school, you'll go back to zero. </p>

<p>The number of transfer students isn't large (check out the law school numbers site), so it's not as easy to transfer as you might think. People get very vested in their schools if they're doing well, and if they're doing badly they wouldn't be viable transfer candidates.</p>

<p>There are probably other negatives, but these are the ones that jumped out at DS. </p>

<p>Positives: You might be able to move up the rankings in the transfer (DS moved up 35+ rankings), although if you're not in the upper schools that's probably not very important. If you want to practice in a different region of the country, it's an opportunity to move to the region where you want to practice so you can start building a network and perhaps get some part-time work in that area. If you want to transfer to a more expensive school, you may have saved money as a 1L by going to a cheaper school.</p>

<p>You can always take another state's bar, provided you can meet the residency requirements. A NY law school may focus on NY law. You'd have to have a plan for taking another state's bar exam, to make sure that you covered that state's laws too. If you wanted to take the FL bar, for example, you should learn FL law to supplement that NY law school's education. You might decide to take a FL bar review class to help. I'm admitted to a few states, and took two state bar exams....it wasn't easy!</p>

<p>You can take a state's bar without attending school or living in that state, at least for the states I'm familiar with; I don't know if any state has a residency requirement. The best schools don't teach state law; you learn what you need for the bar from bar review classes after graduation. So from that perspective, transferring isn't an issue at all. I wouldn't ever suggest attending a school with the expectation that you'd be able to transfer, though, since it can be difficult.</p>

<p>Zap: </p>

<p>You have to check each state's bar requirements. Some states are much more protective of their bars than others. I was asked for representations when I took the bar exams to affirm that I either was a resident, or would be establishing residency.</p>

<p>I assumed that the OP wasn't thinking about transferring from one of the "best schools" that may fail to teach state law. "Ivy Briefs: True Tales of a Neurotic Law Student" by Martha Kimes contains a chapter on the point that you raise. The author describes her panic when she hears the grads of the other NY schools discussing the NY law that they learned in law school at her bar review class. She realizes that she had studied the law generally at Columbia, instead of learning NY law. She ultimately decides that Columbia prepared her very well for learning legal concepts...and yes (not to spoil the ending), she does pass the NY bar.</p>