Apply to the JD Program

Admission Requirements

Our selection process, while rigorous, is not rigid. We insist upon diversity in our student body because we believe the entire law school community benefits from it. We will consider with sensitivity any information about a candidate's special circumstances. We welcome and support students without regard to their immigration status. Please review the university’s policy.

To enroll in our JD program, you must have a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution. We encourage you to gain a broad educational background and to choose challenging courses requiring critical thinking and logical analysis, such as history, economics, philosophy and accounting. We particularly urge you to choose courses in which you will develop strong writing skills.  

First-year applicants

All applicants for admission to our JD program are required to take either the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) administered by Law School Admissions Council (LSAC) or the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) test administered by Educational Testing Service (ETS). Scores for both exams are valid for five years.  CWRU Law School requires applicants to report all valid LSAT and GRE scores that they have received; we look at all scores with an emphasis on the high score.

  1. If you choose to apply with the LSAT, we recommend that you take the LSAT in the summer or fall before applying to law school. You may register for the LSAT by contacting LSAC at 215.968.1001 or LSAC automatically reports all LSAT scores from the past five years. If you have taken the LSAT in the last five years, you do not have the option not to report your score(s) to the Law School—your score(s) will be included in the information that we receive in your CAS report from LSAC. 
  2. If you choose to apply with the GRE, we must receive your GRE score from the ETS by our application deadline (it takes 14 days for ETS to transmit the GRE score). Applicants who have taken the GRE can log into their ETS accounts and select Case Western Reserve University School of Law as a recipient of GRE results using the school code 4812.
  3. All applicants must register with LSAC’s Credential Assembly Service (CAS). Follow the instructions in the packet to arrange for the Credential Assembly Service to send us your letters of recommendation and its analysis of your undergraduate and graduate school transcripts. Our Credential Assembly Service code is 1105.

Submit a completed application form. We accept applications that have been prepared using the Law School Admission Council's electronic application service. This product allows you to use your computer efficiently to fill out and submit applications for all ABA-approved law schools. We prefer that you use the electronic application and waive the application fee for applications electronically submitted. Applications submitted to us through LSAC will be considered postmarked on the day they are electronically submitted. Alternatively, you may submit a completed paper application, available for download. The application fee for paper applications is $40. The application may be obtained from LSAC as part of its electronic application process or by downloading a PDF version of the application. Payment can be made by check.

The Application Packet

Your application is complete when we have received the following:

  • your application fee (waived for applications submitted electronically),
  • personal statement,
  • resume,
  • two letters of recommendation,
  • a CAS report, and
  • your complete file from LSAC.

You may check your application status at any time through the Application/Online Status (ASO) Page. You may access this page from our website.

Upon our receipt of your electronic application, you will be emailed a username and password to access the ASO page. If we are missing any information, we will notify you by email as well as update the online status page.

Include your name and last four digits of your Social Security number or LSAC account number on any supplemental enclosures and identify the question number to which they correspond.

Acknowledgment of Complete Application

The process of compiling application materials and reviewing each application for completeness can take several weeks. Once the file is complete, the Application Online Status Page will be updated to reflect the file's status.


You must obtain a four-year bachelor's degree prior to matriculation. Before registration, you must submit two official transcripts from your undergraduate degree-granting institution certifying your receipt of a bachelor's degree and one official transcript from your graduate degree-granting institution.

Transcripts must be sent directly from the degree-granting institution, which means that we will not accept a transcript directly from you or from LSAC. Transcripts must be printed; electronic copies are not accepted.

The transcripts initially submitted to LSAC are not sufficient to meet the official transcript requirement. Failure to adhere to this requirement may result in suspension or dismissal from the School of Law. You must also update your CAS Report through LSAC with your final transcript showing award of your bachelors degree prior to matriculation.

Standard of Truthfulness and Full Disclosure – Character and Fitness

As a future member of the legal profession, we expect you to possess the highest standards of ethics and character. All applicants must certify that all responses in your application and on all supplemental documents are complete, true and correct.

The failure to disclose an act or event on the Character and Fitness section of our application is often more significant and leads to more serious consequences than the act or event itself. Failure to provide truthful answers or failure to inform the admissions office of any changes to your answers may result in revocation of admission, disciplinary action and/or dismissal by the law school and/or denial of permission to practice law by the state in which you seek admission.

If you have been subject to any criminal proceedings, they must be disclosed even if they were juvenile adjudications or have been dismissed, expunged, sealed or similarly disposed of. If you have been subject to any disciplinary or other administrative proceedings (including any academic, employment, licensing board or military proceedings, whether formal or informal), you must disclose it.

In addition to a bar examination, there are character, fitness and other qualifications for admission to the bar in every U.S jurisdiction. Applicants are encouraged to determine the requirements for any jurisdiction in which they intend to seek admission by contacting the jurisdiction. Addresses for all relevant agencies are available through the National Conference of Bar Examiners.

If you still have questions as to whether or not a matter should be disclosed, please contact the Assistant Dean of Admissions at

Withdrawal of Admission

We reserve the right to withdraw an offer of admission if you fail to maintain satisfactory scholastic standing, if final records fail to show completion of courses and/or degrees required for admission, or if the admission decision was based on incomplete or inaccurate information, including false or incomplete Character and Fitness disclosures.

Transfer Students

Have you started your law school career somewhere and looking to finish at Case Western Reserve? Please see our transfer student page to get details on your application process.

Information for Foreign-Educated International Students

We require that your foreign transcripts be submitted through the J.D. Credential Assembly Service (JDCAS) offered through the Law School Admission Council.

If you completed any postsecondary work outside the United States (including its territories) or Canada, you must use this service for the evaluation of your foreign transcripts—except if you completed the foreign work through a study abroad, consortium or exchange program sponsored by a U.S. or Canadian institution and the work is clearly indicated as such on the home campus transcript.

This service is included in the Credential Assembly Service (CAS) subscription fee. A Foreign Credential Evaluation will be completed by the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO), which will be incorporated into your CAS report.

To use the JDCAS, log in to your online account and follow the instructions for registering for the service. Be sure to print out a Transcript Request Form for each institution and send it promptly to them. More time is usually required to receive foreign transcripts.

Questions about the JD Credential Assembly Service can be directed to LSAC at 215.968.1001, or

If the instruction for your undergraduate education was not in English, you will need to submit a TOEFL score. You must contact the Educational Testing Service (ETS) and request that your TOEFL score be sent to LSAC. LSAC’s TOEFL code for the JD Credential Assembly Service is 8395. Your score will be included in the Foreign Credential Evaluation document that will be included in your LSAC Law School Report.

Early Decision

The Early Decision Process is an option if you are certain you will attend Case Western Reserve University School of Law if admitted. The Early Decision Agreement is an agreement between you and us. If admitted through the Early Decision process, you must withdraw all other applications and must enroll during the fall of the next year.

Early Decision applications are considered complete when all required application materials, including the Early Decision Agreement (see Supplemental Application) and a CAS report, have been received by the Office of Admissions. Students admitted under the Early Decision Process will be notified of a scholarship award, if any, prior to the January 15, deposit deadline. Early Decision applicants may be admitted, denied, or held for consideration through the regular decision process. Applicants who have not been admitted under the Early Decision Process are not bound by this Early Decision Agreement.

Applicants who apply under the Early Decision Process must:

  • Agree that they will not submit an Early Decision Application to any other law school this year;
  • Agree that if admitted to Case Western Reserve University School of Law under the Early Decision Process, they will withdraw any pending applications to other law schools and not submit any additional applications;
  • Agree that if admitted to Case Western Reserve University School of Law under the Early Decision Process, they will enroll in Case Western Reserve University School of Law in the fall semester.

Regular Decision

Our application is available on September 1. Our priority application deadline is March 1; however, applications will be accepted until April 1 (extended to July 1) for the fall entering class. Regular decision applications are considered complete when all required application materials, including a CAS report, have been received by the Office of Admissions. Updated file status information will be posted on the Application Online Status Page.

Beginning in January, we take action on your applications. We have a rolling admissions policy; that is, as decisions are made, you are notified. We make most admission decisions between January 1 and May 1, at which time we may establish a waiting list. As vacancies occur up to the date of registration, we draw the best-qualified candidates from the waiting list.

If we are your first choice for law school, we invite you to make an early commitment to enroll through our First Choice Option. The First Choice Option Agreement is an agreement between you and us. First Choice Option students are required to make only one deposit in the amount of $500 by the designated deadline date.

Admission to a State Bar

You should secure information about the character and other qualifications for admission to the bar in the state(s) in which you intend to practice law.