Waiving LOR access rights

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BizOwner
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Waiving LOR access rights

Postby BizOwner » Mon May 03, 2010 3:17 pm

In LSAC's LOR form, there is a clause that applicants can sign waiving rights for access to the letters of recommendation. Can anyone clarify what this clause is? Required or not?

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Kilpatrick
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby Kilpatrick » Mon May 03, 2010 3:20 pm

It means that you won't be able to see the letter your recommender wrote. Usually it's advised that you waive your right because it looks better to adcoms. If you waived, schools will feel reassured that the recommender wrote an honest letter.

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amputatedbrain
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby amputatedbrain » Mon May 03, 2010 3:23 pm

Once submitted, the LOR becomes part of your academic record. Naturally, you have the right to see your own academic record, and by extension the LOR. However, by signing the clause, you give up the right to view the LOR. What it's doing is essentially telling your recommenders you trust them to write a positive recomendation (because you won't be able to read it later and doublecheck what they wrote). Not signing it will make your writers think your are suspicious of what they might write, and looks bad.

So no, it's not required, but it would be a mistake to not sign.

BizOwner
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby BizOwner » Mon May 03, 2010 3:29 pm

A promise that no duress was involved.

I'm asking for my first LOR tonight and just came across it for the first time. Seems excessive considering the nature of the LOR process.
Last edited by BizOwner on Mon May 03, 2010 3:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Kilpatrick
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby Kilpatrick » Mon May 03, 2010 3:30 pm

It's just checking a box, I don't think it's that excessive.

BizOwner
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby BizOwner » Mon May 03, 2010 3:32 pm

The LOR has to be either sent directly to LSAC or given to the applicant with a signature across the backflap of a sealed envelop.

In addition to this, the waiver is suggested? Not a little bit?

Anonymous Loser
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby Anonymous Loser » Mon May 03, 2010 3:34 pm

The waiver merely facilitates FERPA compliance. Whether or not you waive your right of access has no effect on your admissions chances.

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amputatedbrain
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby amputatedbrain » Mon May 03, 2010 3:37 pm

Anonymous Loser wrote:The waiver merely facilitates FERPA compliance. Whether or not you waive your right of access has no effect on your admissions chances.


Exactly, like I said, it's about the relationship between you and the recommender, not you and the school.

Anonymous Loser
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby Anonymous Loser » Mon May 03, 2010 3:47 pm

amputatedbrain wrote:
Anonymous Loser wrote:The waiver merely facilitates FERPA compliance. Whether or not you waive your right of access has no effect on your admissions chances.


Exactly, like I said, it's about the relationship between you and the recommender, not you and the school.


No. What you are suggesting is actually the complete opposite of what I've said. The relationship between the recommender and the applicant has nothing whatsoever to do with FERPA, and is therefore not implicated in any way by the waiver.

legalized
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby legalized » Mon May 03, 2010 4:01 pm

BizOwner wrote:A promise that no duress was involved.

I'm asking for my first LOR tonight and just came across it for the first time. Seems excessive considering the nature of the LOR process.


I completely agree. Information that affects my entire future as far as being part of my law school admissions process that I basically have to waive the right to see just seems vaguely intimidating. Esp. if you didn't JUST graduate UG.

BenJ
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby BenJ » Mon May 03, 2010 4:07 pm

Vaguely intimidating but absolutely essential. Schools will look askance at any LOR written without a waiver of your right to view it--it implies that you do not trust your recommenders, and moreover that the recommendation may not be totally honest in the first place (might be more positive than the recommender would have written otherwise).

Most recommenders will let you see the letter before they send it off if you ask.

legalized
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby legalized » Mon May 03, 2010 4:53 pm

BenJ wrote:Vaguely intimidating but absolutely essential. Schools will look askance at any LOR written without a waiver of your right to view it--it implies that you do not trust your recommenders, and moreover that the recommendation may not be totally honest in the first place (might be more positive than the recommender would have written otherwise).

Most recommenders will let you see the letter before they send it off if you ask.


I'm kind of making myself stick to not seeing it til after it's been sent off to the first wave of law schools. Just to feel honest.

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Sakura3210
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby Sakura3210 » Mon May 03, 2010 5:15 pm

This maybe (probably is) a stupid question, but - is there anyway to see your LORs once you've waived your right? e.g. Assuming they're in your file, looking them up after you've gotten into a school. I kind of want to see what my profs said about me. :oops:

Anonymous Loser
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby Anonymous Loser » Mon May 03, 2010 5:38 pm

Sakura3210 wrote:This maybe (probably is) a stupid question, but - is there anyway to see your LORs once you've waived your right? e.g. Assuming they're in your file, looking them up after you've gotten into a school. I kind of want to see what my profs said about me. :oops:


The whole point of waiving your right of access is that it excuses the school from its obligation to keep the letter on file for you to review.

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Sakura3210
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby Sakura3210 » Mon May 03, 2010 5:58 pm

Anonymous Loser wrote:
Sakura3210 wrote:This maybe (probably is) a stupid question, but - is there anyway to see your LORs once you've waived your right? e.g. Assuming they're in your file, looking them up after you've gotten into a school. I kind of want to see what my profs said about me. :oops:


The whole point of waiving your right of access is that it excuses the school from its obligation to keep the letter on file for you to review.


Right, but does that mean they have to get rid of it? If they kept it for whatever reason, could you then gain access to it?

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YCrevolution
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby YCrevolution » Mon May 03, 2010 6:04 pm

..

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Sakura3210
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby Sakura3210 » Mon May 03, 2010 6:10 pm

YCrevolution wrote:
Sakura3210 wrote:
Anonymous Loser wrote:
Sakura3210 wrote:This maybe (probably is) a stupid question, but - is there anyway to see your LORs once you've waived your right? e.g. Assuming they're in your file, looking them up after you've gotten into a school. I kind of want to see what my profs said about me. :oops:


The whole point of waiving your right of access is that it excuses the school from its obligation to keep the letter on file for you to review.


Right, but does that mean they have to get rid of it? If they kept it for whatever reason, could you then gain access to it?

No.


Dang. :x Alright, thanks for the info, appreciate it.

motiontodismiss
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby motiontodismiss » Mon May 03, 2010 6:17 pm

Two of the three letters I got I already saw anyway. Just sign it. And if you want to see it that badly, ask them if they would mind showing it to you but after you're done with the whole process.

legalized
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby legalized » Mon May 03, 2010 10:06 pm

Sakura3210 wrote:This maybe (probably is) a stupid question, but - is there anyway to see your LORs once you've waived your right? e.g. Assuming they're in your file, looking them up after you've gotten into a school. I kind of want to see what my profs said about me. :oops:


Yeah ask the professor who wrote it to send you a copy.

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amputatedbrain
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Re: Waiving LOR access rights

Postby amputatedbrain » Tue May 04, 2010 1:38 pm

I wouldn't worry about it . . . IMO the LOR is by far the least important part of the application. Shitty students can schmooze their way into good LOR's, and sometimes really great students just don't forge personal relationships with their professors that make really great LORs. Unless it's a particularly glowing letter from a famous professor, or the other end of the spectrum, your writer torpedoes you, your LOR's don't really matter.




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