School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

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tlslsnlsp
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School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby tlslsnlsp » Fri Feb 04, 2011 8:39 pm

I heard some schools will do this to people on the waitlist, to make sure their yield doesn't get hurt. Could you potentially say yes, then (for whatever reason) after getting the official acceptance, decide to go to another school? I know you can't do this with ED applications as there's a contract and all, but what about these "unofficial" conversations/emails about accepting before getting off a waitlist?

pwyoung
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby pwyoung » Sat Feb 05, 2011 1:10 am

It's unofficial. Unless you're signing an ED contract, you can totally do it.

jeremysen
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby jeremysen » Sat Feb 05, 2011 1:14 am

pwyoung wrote:It's unofficial. Unless you're signing an ED contract, you can totally do it.


wtf?

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Stringer Bell
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby Stringer Bell » Sat Feb 05, 2011 1:23 am

I think it's one of those things that's "frowned upon". Like jacking off on an airplane.

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soullesswonder
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby soullesswonder » Sat Feb 05, 2011 1:28 am

Stringer Bell wrote:I think it's one of those things that's "frowned upon". Like jacking off on an airplane.


This.

Technically, depending on the way the overture was made it could constitute a verbal contract. In practice, a law school is unlikely to sue over it. It would, however, be in very poor taste, and I suspect some schools make you accept immediately in order to avoid this hypothetical situation.

HopefulFish
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby HopefulFish » Sat Feb 05, 2011 2:54 am

soullesswonder wrote:
Stringer Bell wrote:I think it's one of those things that's "frowned upon". Like jacking off on an airplane.


This.

Technically, depending on the way the overture was made it could constitute a verbal contract. In practice, a law school is unlikely to sue over it. It would, however, be in very poor taste, and I suspect some schools make you accept immediately in order to avoid this hypothetical situation.


no

pwyoung
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby pwyoung » Sat Feb 05, 2011 3:29 am

jeremysen wrote:
pwyoung wrote:It's unofficial. Unless you're signing an ED contract, you can totally do it.


wtf?


I mean yeah, you'll look like a dick, but there's nothing they can hold over you.

adude
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby adude » Sat Feb 05, 2011 4:03 am

soullesswonder wrote:
Stringer Bell wrote:I think it's one of those things that's "frowned upon". Like jacking off on an airplane.


This.

Technically, depending on the way the overture was made it could constitute a verbal contract. In practice, a law school is unlikely to sue over it. It would, however, be in very poor taste, and I suspect some schools make you accept immediately in order to avoid this hypothetical situation.


doesn't sound like they are offering anything with certainty if he says he will accept . . . they still have complete discretion over whether they will accept him or not. illusory implied promise = no contract. doubt they could pull out any estoppel arguments. probably would get laughed at

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JusticeHarlan
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby JusticeHarlan » Sat Feb 05, 2011 10:13 am

adude wrote:
soullesswonder wrote:
Stringer Bell wrote:I think it's one of those things that's "frowned upon". Like jacking off on an airplane.


This.

Technically, depending on the way the overture was made it could constitute a verbal contract. In practice, a law school is unlikely to sue over it. It would, however, be in very poor taste, and I suspect some schools make you accept immediately in order to avoid this hypothetical situation.


doesn't sound like they are offering anything with certainty if he says he will accept . . . they still have complete discretion over whether they will accept him or not. illusory implied promise = no contract. doubt they could pull out any estoppel arguments. probably would get laughed at

Also, mitigation of damages: they could probably pull another identical canidate of the wait list, and there'd be nothing to sue for.

BeachedBrit
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby BeachedBrit » Sat Feb 05, 2011 12:20 pm

There's very little wrong legally, however remember that the admissions deans all talk and other schools can certainly rescind your acceptance. There have been cases of things like this happening with ED contracts and while [ED contract =/= unofficial promise of matriculation] I still feel that it's a risk that isn't worth taking. How would you like to be rejected by both schools and possibly others over it?

Always err on the side of being ethical and cautious, it's a fairly high stakes game with a much bigger downside than upside.

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soullesswonder
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby soullesswonder » Sat Feb 05, 2011 1:14 pm

adude wrote:
soullesswonder wrote:
Stringer Bell wrote:I think it's one of those things that's "frowned upon". Like jacking off on an airplane.


This.

Technically, depending on the way the overture was made it could constitute a verbal contract. In practice, a law school is unlikely to sue over it. It would, however, be in very poor taste, and I suspect some schools make you accept immediately in order to avoid this hypothetical situation.


doesn't sound like they are offering anything with certainty if he says he will accept . . . they still have complete discretion over whether they will accept him or not. illusory implied promise = no contract. doubt they could pull out any estoppel arguments. probably would get laughed at


Law school could argue that it only made an invitation to bargain and the applicant was the one who made the offer by saying, "If you accept me I will attend". That would eliminate the illusory promise. As I said, though, none of this is likely to happen.

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lisjjen
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby lisjjen » Sat Feb 05, 2011 1:22 pm

Easy fix. Tell them that they're in your top 5 and then gush over why you would love to go there.

That's what I did with Vandy. It's not as potent of a statement, but it's less problematic.

Snorre
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby Snorre » Sat Feb 05, 2011 1:33 pm

Stringer Bell wrote:I think it's one of those things that's "frowned upon". Like jacking off on an airplane.


I think maybe these two things inhabit different registers of Frown?

2011Law
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby 2011Law » Sat Feb 05, 2011 1:51 pm

tlslsnlsp wrote:I heard some schools will do this to people on the waitlist, to make sure their yield doesn't get hurt.


For that reason alone, unless there is a serious downside to it, I'd tell them that I was very likely to attend and then not accept, unless it was a school I was actually considering and they offered a good scholly.

They deserve it for so blatantly trying to game the rankings. They all deserve it.

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lisjjen
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby lisjjen » Sat Feb 05, 2011 2:07 pm

2011Law wrote:
They deserve it for so blatantly trying to game the rankings. They all deserve it.


Indeed they do. It would be like shoplifting from Walmart. Pretty sure that wouldn't be the end of their business.

Unfortunately, like stealing from Walmart, doing something that might have legal implications may be an imprudent choice.

2011Law
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby 2011Law » Sat Feb 05, 2011 9:28 pm

lisjjen wrote:
2011Law wrote:
They deserve it for so blatantly trying to game the rankings. They all deserve it.


Indeed they do. It would be like shoplifting from Walmart. Pretty sure that wouldn't be the end of their business.

Unfortunately, like stealing from Walmart, doing something that might have legal implications may be an imprudent choice.



I don't exactly see how its anything like shoplifting, unless the before posters were wrong that saying you are very likely to attend when in fact you have no intention is actually illegal.

Also, you sound like you want to steal from Walmart. That wouldn't be so bad, but this is a forum for lawyers to be...

jkay
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby jkay » Sat Feb 05, 2011 9:40 pm

Emit positive vibrations but retain thread of escape.

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voltage88
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby voltage88 » Sat Feb 05, 2011 9:46 pm

Excuse me for my ignorance, but YP helps the schools' rankings by keeping their acceptance rate lower?

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TommyK
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby TommyK » Sat Feb 05, 2011 9:47 pm

:lol: at it being considered a contract

Also, could you imagine a law school suing a student who decides to not attend? C'mon...

2011Law
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby 2011Law » Sat Feb 05, 2011 9:56 pm

voltage88 wrote:Excuse me for my ignorance, but YP helps the schools' rankings by keeping their acceptance rate lower?


Yes, although I don't really get why either.

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voltage88
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby voltage88 » Sat Feb 05, 2011 10:05 pm

2011Law wrote:
voltage88 wrote:Excuse me for my ignorance, but YP helps the schools' rankings by keeping their acceptance rate lower?


Yes, although I don't really get why either.


It's kinda silly. I think acceptance rate is only affects 2.5% of a school's ranking score on US News. I doubt an acceptance rate that's hundreths or tenths lower is gonna have a major impact on a school's ranking...

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lisjjen
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby lisjjen » Sun Feb 06, 2011 2:57 am

2011Law wrote:
I don't exactly see how its anything like shoplifting, unless the before posters were wrong that saying you are very likely to attend when in fact you have no intention is actually illegal.

Also, you sound like you want to steal from Walmart. That wouldn't be so bad, but this is a forum for lawyers to be...


Shoplifting from Walmart is an analogue for being shrewd in dealing with law schools, because even if you do something that's slightly unethical, these top law schools are such behemoths, much like Walmart, that they really wouldn't be hurting from it. Plus, the promises of huge salaries and the number fudging is starting to get on my nerves making me feel like these "venerable" and "elite" institutions have more in common with corporate marketing than we'd like to admit.

Also, where did you get the impression that I wanted to steal from Walmart?

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romothesavior
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby romothesavior » Sun Feb 06, 2011 3:42 am

soullesswonder wrote:
adude wrote:
soullesswonder wrote:
Stringer Bell wrote:I think it's one of those things that's "frowned upon". Like jacking off on an airplane.


This.

Technically, depending on the way the overture was made it could constitute a verbal contract. In practice, a law school is unlikely to sue over it. It would, however, be in very poor taste, and I suspect some schools make you accept immediately in order to avoid this hypothetical situation.


doesn't sound like they are offering anything with certainty if he says he will accept . . . they still have complete discretion over whether they will accept him or not. illusory implied promise = no contract. doubt they could pull out any estoppel arguments. probably would get laughed at


Law school could argue that it only made an invitation to bargain and the applicant was the one who made the offer by saying, "If you accept me I will attend". That would eliminate the illusory promise. As I said, though, none of this is likely to happen.

:|

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ggocat
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Re: School asks if you will accept before offering acceptance?

Postby ggocat » Sun Feb 06, 2011 4:14 am

2011Law wrote:
voltage88 wrote:Excuse me for my ignorance, but YP helps the schools' rankings by keeping their acceptance rate lower?


Yes, although I don't really get why either.

Higher yield = fewer acceptances = lower acceptance rate.

voltage88 wrote:It's kinda silly. I think acceptance rate is only affects 2.5% of a school's ranking score on US News. I doubt an acceptance rate that's hundreths or tenths lower is gonna have a major impact on a school's ranking...

Agreed, but when done in the aggregate, we're talking about much more than tenths of a percentage point. Schools can (and sometimes do) use the same tactic for non-waitlist applicants.

If a school can manipulate the acceptance rate 5-10 percentage points (ideally 20 points), it can be a 3-4 spot difference in the top 30 or so schools and 7-8 spot difference in the second tier.




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