First Year Application Instructions

General Information

Thank you for considering the University of California, Irvine School of Law for your legal education. All of the following information is important; you should read the entirety prior to beginning the application for admission. In particular, in choosing whether to apply for Binding Early Decision or Regular Decision.

To promote access to a legal education at UCI, there is no application fee. A fee waiver is not necessary. Due to our limited resources, we are unable to grant CAS report fee waivers.

You will receive an e-mail confirmation of our receipt of your Fall 2024 1L application that contains your log-in credentials for the Applicant Status Online system within 72 business hours of submission (3 business days). Please check all your folders and/or tabs for this e-mail; if you did not receive it, please contact us via and include your full LSAC account number (including the L).

Dates & Deadlines

For Applicants

September 1, 2023

JD First-Year Application opens through the LSAC portal

November 15, 2023

Binding Early Decision Applications due. All ED applications must be received and completed by the deadline

January 15, 2024

  • Binding Early Decision SIR and non-refundable first seat deposit due
  • Fall 2023 Deferral SIR and additional non-refundable seat deposit due

March 31, 2024

Fall 2024 JD First-Year Priority Application deadline (your file must be complete)

For Admitted Students (Class of 2027/Fall 2024 entering) 

March 2, 2024

Admitted students who wish to be considered for a need-based grant must submit complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or the California Dream Application by the application deadline 

April 15, 2024

  • Regular Decision SIR and non-refundable first seat deposit begins to be due (this will become rolling for later admits; refer to the dates provided with your admission)
  • Binding Early Decision non-refundable second seat deposit due

May 2, 2024

Housing Application due by 4PM PT for incoming 1Ls to access the housing guarantee (must have submitted affirmative SIR and seat deposit no less than 48 hours prior to access the application)

June 1, 2024

Regular Decision non-refundable second seat deposit due

July 13, 2024

July seat reconfirmation form due


Class of 2027 Orientation begins

Apply Now

Application Information Applicable to All Applicants

UCI Law Application for Admission
The application is available through the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC) website beginning on September 1.

  • Binding Early Decision applicants must have a complete file by the November 15 deadline (see more information below).
  • Regular Decision applicants who wish to meet the priority deadline of March 31 must have their file complete-inclusive of CAS Report, standardized tests, and letters of recommendation. However, we will accept the CAS Report on a rolling basis thereafter.                                   

When submitting your application for admission, please strictly adhere to all application instructions. In addition to completing the application form itself, we require additional essays or statements. Additional instructions regarding the following statements are included with the application:

  • Personal Statement (750-word limit)
  • “Why UCI Law” Statement (750-word limit)
  • Current Résumé
  • Character and Fitness/Conduct information, if applicable
  • An Inclusive Excellence Essay is optional (500-word limit)
  • Additional Optional Statements may only be a LSAT Addendum and/or a GPA Addendum. (While you may write about one or both topics, the total word limit among these optional statements is 500 words.)

Please ensure the correct documents are submitted with your application; updates or revisions of documents are not accepted. Please follow formatting instructions and be sure to indicate your name, LSAC Account number, and the type of document (Personal Statement, Inclusive Excellence Essay, etc.) in the header of each document. 

Note: Conduct disclosures are separate and distinct from the optional statements. There is no word count limitation on conduct disclosures, please utilize the space you need to fully explain any incident(s) and rehabilitation.

Credentials Assembly Service
All applicants must register for and utilize the LSAC’s Credential Assembly Service (CAS). The CAS houses your transcript(s), letters of recommendation, and, as applicable, your LSAT score(s) and LSAT writing.

If you are applying through Regular Decision, your CAS may be received after the application deadlines. While we encourage you to submit your CAS Report when your standardized testing is complete, the Admissions Committee will not hold your file for upon an affirmative request after you submit your application for admission. LSAT Scores will automatically populate within the CAS Report.

We accept offical score reports for only one type of standardized test. If you have taken or will take the LSAT, we will not request or download an official GRE Score Report.

In order to apply for admission, you must possess a bachelor’s degree or have completed the equivalent of six semesters (nine quarters) and are on track to have your degree conferred prior to the beginning of your first law school semester. Your bachelor’s degree must be from an accredited institution of higher education. (The accredited institution must be listed on the U.S. Department of Education’s database.)

Applicants educated abroad (excluding approved study abroad from a domestic institution) must utilize the LSAC CAS Authentication & Evaluation Service. Internationally educated applicants may apply and be admitted to UCI Law so long as the Authentication & Evaluation Service indicate the degree is equivalent to a Bachelor’s Degree that is earned in the United States. The Admissions Office will not discuss concerns regarding the validity of transcripts, United States degree equivalency, or accreditation acceptability until the LSAC Report is received with the application.

All applicants are under a continuing obligation to provide updated transcripts at all times. If you apply while currently an undergraduate student, you must update your transcript with LSAC following each semester or quarter, including after receipt of your admissions decision. Upon conferral of your bachelor’s degree, send your final transcripts to the LSAC as well. UCI Law must receive a final transcript showing conferral of your undergradute degree prior to matriculation.  

Transcripts from every college or university attended (except study abroad transcripts from foreign universities) must be submitted for inclusion in your CAS Report. Failing to include a transcript may result in your file being marked as incomplete (and may also delay delivery of a CAS report) and delay review by the Admissions Committee.

Standardized Tests
Applicants may apply with either the LSAT or GRE.

UCI Law requires a standardized test as a part of the JD application. Applicants seeking admission for Fall 2024 may take either the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) or the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). The Admissions Committee has authorized accepting both the LSAT and LSAT-flex for Fall 2024 admission, they will be treated as the same. UCI Law utilizes the term LSAT to refer to both the traditional LSAT and the LSAT-flex.

For Fall 2024 admission, the last LSAT score accepted will be from the April 2024 administration, and the last GRE must be taken no later than April 20, 2024.

The applicant must choose between the LSAT and the GRE, but please be mindful of the following guidelines:

  1. We encourage you to select either the LSAT or the GRE at the outset.
  2. If you have a LSAT score, that score will control for Admissions Committee evaluation.
  3. Applicants who have taken both the LSAT and GRE are required to submit LSAT scores.
  4. UCI Law will only download the official report of one exam type. Therefore, if you have taken or plan to take the LSAT, we will not download an official GRE Score Report for you.
  5. Applicants who have only taken the GRE, and not the LSAT, must submit all GRE scores from the last five (5) years. Applicants must not use the ScoreSelect option offered by ETS. Failure to submit all GRE scores and/or use of ScoreSelect may result in a withdrawal of an admission offer.
    1. GRE scores should be submitted directly to UCI Law from ETS using UC Irvine Graduate School’s ETS school code 4859.
    2. Applicants applying with only GRE scores are still required to subscribe to, and utilize, the CAS for submission of transcripts and letters of recommendation. 
    3. After receipt of your GRE Score Report we will manually request the CAS Report.
    4. The Admissions Committee reserves the right to re-review an application admitted with solely a GRE score where the LSAT is subsequently taken and reported to their file.
  6. Regardless of which exam, scores are valid only if they have been earned within the last five (5) years.

Letters of Recommendation
UCI Law requires a minimum of two (2) but no more than three (3) letters of recommendation.

Letters of recommendation must be on file with LSAC and assigned to UCI Law. We will not receive your CAS Report until at least two (2) letters are assigned to UCI Law and on file with LSAC.

Letters of recommendation from academic sources are preferred; however, letters from professional references are acceptable. We do not suggest solely personal references.

Binding Early Decision Information

UCI Law allows applicants to apply as Binding Early Decision (ED). In addition to the general application information above, please adhere to this information as well if applying ED. For ED applicants, if there is a conflict between ED information and general information, ED information supersedes.

When considering whether to apply for ED, UCI Law should be your first choice. You may only apply to one law school as an ED applicant. If you are admitted as an ED applicant, you are required to withdraw your application from all other law school programs, not initiate any new law school applications, and attend UCI Law in Fall 2024 - no deferrals will be granted under any circumstance.

In order to apply for the UCI Law ED program, you must have a complete file prior to November 15, 2023. Therefore, you must:

    1. Complete the JD Application through the LSAC portal, indicating your desire to be considered for Binding Early Decision (question 1) and submit all written materials.
    2. Sit for the LSAT or LSAT-flex no later than the October 2023 administration (GRE scores are not accepted for ED consideration). If your LSAT is close to five (5) years old, please confirm with LSAC that it is still reportable.
    3. Complete your LSAT writing to ensure that it will be in your CAS Report prior to the November 15 deadline.
    4. Confirm that your all transcripts have been received by LSAC and processed for inclusion in your CAS Report. Missing any transcript for any reason renders your file incomplete.
    5. Confirm that you have two (2) letters of recommendation in your CAS Report and those letters are assigned to UCI Law.
    6. Complete the Early Decision Certification (ED Certification). If your ED Certification is not received by the Admissions Office (in-hand) by the deadline, your file will be moved to Regular Decision. You have three options to submit the ED Certification. Your file will not be considered complete until the ED Certification form has been received. 
      1. You may electronically sign (in Adobe) and e-mail the form to
      2. You may print the form, sign it in ink, scan it back as a PDF and e-mail it to
      3. You may print the form, sign it in ink, and mail it back to the Office of Admissions. If you choose this (third) option, it must be physically received by the Law School Admissions Office (not postmarked or at the University) by November 15. If you are pursuing this option, please mail it to:

                                        Office of Admissions and Student Financial Services
                                        University of California, Irvine School of Law
                                        401 E. Peltason Drive, Suite 1000
                                        Irvine, CA 92697-8000

Please utilize the application status checker to confirm that your file is complete by the deadline. The status checker is updated and will show as either "Complete" or “In Review” by November 20 if all required components are received.

ED applicants will receive either a decision of “Admit” or “Hold for Regular Decision”.

  • If you receive a decision of Admit, your ED Certification becomes active and you must immediately withdraw all applications to other schools. You will secure your seat in the class by submitting your SIR and paying the non-refundable monetary seat deposits by the dates provided with your offer of admission.
  • UCI Law reserves the right to contact other schools to inform them of your ED admission if necessary, and you grant permission for other law schools to inform UCI Law regarding your application status with that school.
  • If you receive a decision of “Hold for Regular Decision” you are free to apply to any other program and your ED Certification is no longer binding.


More information about scholarships, financial aid, and paying for law school is available on the Student Financial Services page.

Early Decision Scholarships

  • Those who receive a decision of Admit as ED are guaranteed a scholarship of $30,000/year renewable for the duration of your law school education (six (6) semesters) at UCI provided you maintain good academic standing.
  • Those who receive a decision of “Hold for Regular Decision” and subsequently receive an offer of admission will be evaluated by the Scholarship Committee for merit scholarship funds. These scholarships may be higher or lower than those granted in the ED process.

Regular Decision Scholarships

  • UCI law evaluates applicants admitted through Regular Decision for merit-based scholarships shortly after the Admissions Committee renders their favorable decision.
  • While timing is not dispositive regarding scholarships, since our scholarship budget is finite, awards may become limited as we move through the application cycle. Therefore, it's in an applicant’s best interest to apply by the priority deadline to maximize their potential scholarship award.

Need-Based Grants & Federal Aid

To be considered for need-based grants and federal financial aid, UCI Law recommends applicants submit the 2023-2024 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by March 2, 2024 and designate UCI Law as a recipient even if they have yet to receive a decision. UCI Law's Federal School Code is 001314. Students who are not eligible to file a FAFSA and qualify for the CA AB540 fee exemption can apply for certain types of financial aid by completing the California Dream Application. In order to be considered for a need-based grant, you must file the FAFSA or California Dream Application by March 2, 2024.

JD Admission Decisions

Binding Early Decision:

  • The Admissions Committee’s goal is to have all decisions to ED applicants by the end of December.

Regular Decision:

  • The Admissions Committee’s goal is to have all Regular Decision files that are complete by March 31 receive a decision by May 15.
  • Any ED applicants held over to the Regular Decision pool will receive an updated decision by April 15.

Required Disclosure

Please note that federal regulations require higher education programs that are intended to meet professional licensure and certification requirements to disclose to students whether the program meets licensure and certification requirements in other states. The regulations, which were enacted on November 1, 2019, can be found at 34 CFR §668.43(a)(5)(v) (

The License and Certification Disclosures for the University of California can be found here: 

The University of California, Irvine, School of Law is required to provide reports to various federal and state agencies about the ethnic composition of our applicant pool. We therefore ask that you answer the questions about your ethnic identity located in the demographics section of this application. The University maintains the confidentiality of this information and uses it for statistical purposes. You may decline to state your ethnic identity. You may also select more than one box.


Updated 08/24/2023