Law School Admissions Letter of Continued Interest Etiquette

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Applying to law school is a lot of work – but for those of you who have submitted your applications and are waiting on decisions, the hard part has just begun!

It’s frustrating to sit and wait while law schools reach a decision, and sometimes you may be able to help your application along. However, keep in mind the cardinal rule of law school applications: If the school gives you instructions, follow them!

If your application has been waitlisted or put on hold, you may want to consider writing a Letter of Continued Interest (LOCI). The purpose of this letter is twofold: You want to let the school know that you really want to go there, and you want to make yourself stand out from the other schlubs who are on the waitlist with you.

Anna Ivey of our partner Ivey Consulting provides some great tips in her article “How Early Is Too Early for a LOCI?”, but if everything else she writes falls on deaf ears, remember to follow any explicit instructions given by the school.

When the school notified you that you had been waitlisted, they may have let you know that they welcome updates (green light!); that they welcome updates, but only after a certain date (yellow light!); or they may have asked you to not send additional items (red light!). If you don’t follow their instructions, it’s not going to look good, so make sure to double-check before you do anything. (You may even want to check nontraditional sources, such as the school’s official admissions Twitter if they have one.)

There’s tons of great info on the Interwebs about writing a solid LOCI, but briefly: Convince the law school that you’re dying to go there and that you’d be a great fit. Do some research on them and reference specific programs or features that appeal to you. If you’ve had any life updates, such as a promotion, let them know. Keep it to a page or shorter (brevity is a virtue!), and again, if they gave you instructions on how to submit updates, follow those instructions. Pretty simple, right?

If you haven’t received word of any official decisions from your school (i.e. your law school application is still pending), there’s not a whole lot you can do. You need to keep the school updated on any changes, so if you’ve been promoted (or – gulp – demoted or fired) or if you’ve received new grades, let the schools know. Some people also submit a LOCI after their application has been pending for three months, but you’ll want to think carefully about that decision, because you run the risk of being a pest.

Beyond that, don’t stress. You’ve already done all you can do to put together a killer law school application, so there’s not much you can do other than sit tight. Read some books, catch up on TV, dress your dog up in ridiculous costumes and take pictures – whatever floats your boat. By this time next year you probably won’t have a whole lot of free time, so take advantage of it now!

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