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LLM Degree

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The Master of Laws (LLM) program at Duke Law School is designed to introduce graduates of foreign law schools to the legal system of the United States and to provide the opportunity to take advanced courses in specialized areas of the law.

LLM studentsLLM students are welcome to make selections from the large number of courses represented in the curriculum. With the exception of two required courses, all classes are taken with JD students. Students may also take courses in other parts of the university, such as the Fuqua School of Business or the Sanford School of Public Policy.


Most LLM students at Duke are professionals with two or more years of experience at well-known law firms. They are also judges, prosecutors, academics, members of government ministries, corporations, or financial institutions. The LLM program usually includes a small number of talented, very recent law graduates as well.

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Application Deadlines
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Applicants to Duke Law's LLM, SJD and exchange programs may begin submitting applications for the 2020-2021 academic year on September 1, 2019. The application deadline for the LLM program is January 20, 2020. The application deadline for the SJD program is February 20, 2020.

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New York Bar Exam
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Duke's curriculum is specifically designed to allow you to take the New York Bar exam, assuming your previous legal education meets some basic requirements such as the appropriate length of time of study.

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"The LLM program taught me the basic structure and interesting dynamics of the U.S. legal frame-work and inspired and cultivated my intellectual curiosity to learn more about it. Even with a few years under my belt as a practitioner, the program solidified my expertise in international business law and greatly enhanced my legal career."

Shinichi Yoshiya, Vice President, Morgan Stanley