Need Advice Concerning Letters of Recommendation

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
Aiming For the Top
Posts: 12
Joined: Thu Dec 01, 2011 12:35 pm

Need Advice Concerning Letters of Recommendation

Postby Aiming For the Top » Thu Dec 22, 2011 3:19 am

Hello Everyone,
I'm in need of some advice. My personal statement, resume, addendum, and applications are all complete. I won't have my LSAT score until January and my two additional letters of rec haven't come in yet. I asked one of my recommenders to both fax and mail my letter and my other letter was just sent out last week. I know that one of my letters got lost in the mail last month so it had to be resent (either that or LSAC never processed it). For some schools I could technically apply because I have one reportable LSAT score that's REALLY low and one letter of rec. I have three questions:

1) Should I submit what I have and contact the schools that I'm applying to once my LSAT score and two letters of rec come in? Is it rational to fear that some of the schools I'm applying to will accidentally look at my CAS as is and make a quick decision?

2) Have any of you had an experience where LSAC lost your letter(s) or didn't process them? Is this common?

3) Since LSAC will be closed from the 26th to the 30th of this month, my letters may not be processed until January. I'm a URM with a 3.83 GPA from the University of California and not so great LSAT scores (but I'm writing an addendum to explain that this is partially due to a learning difference and I didn't qualify for extra time on the LSAT). Because I'm applying so late to tier 1 and tier 2 schools, is it worth applying at all?

Thank you so much for answering my questions!

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Perdevise
Posts: 367
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2011 7:45 pm

Re: Need Advice Concerning Letters of Recommendation

Postby Perdevise » Thu Dec 22, 2011 10:44 am

I would go ahead and ask the schools to wait for your new LSAT score and LoRs and see where you get in. Without knowing your exact score, a URM with a GPA like that could have an interesting cycle (but applying so late won't help). If you don't get into a school that will get you a job/get a financial aid package that is worth it, you should take a year off, and retake the LSAT because with your GPA and your URM status, a score in the mid to high 160s will open incredible doors for you.

Edit: I read again and noticed you didn't qualify for accommodations on the LSAT. If you think you can do better with half a year of practice, then take it again. If not, waiting for next cycle could help anyway with earlier apps.

bp shinners
Posts: 3091
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2011 7:05 pm

Re: Need Advice Concerning Letters of Recommendation

Postby bp shinners » Thu Dec 22, 2011 2:03 pm

Aiming For the Top wrote:I'm writing an addendum to explain that this is partially due to a learning difference and I didn't qualify for extra time on the LSAT.


I would strongly recommend against submitting this addendum.

Ideally, an addendum will explain a problem that happened at a certain time but will no longer affect you going forward. Your learning difference will continue with you to law school, so the schools have no reason to think it will be any different on a law school final than on the LSAT. I don't want to get into the politics of this and whether it's 'fair' or not, but it's how it works.

If you recently started a new course of treatment or therapy for the learning difference and retake the LSAT to score higher (and succeed), then you can explain the lower LSAT with this addendum. If you just want to explain low LSAT scores using it, it will probably hurt you more than help you.

Aiming For the Top
Posts: 12
Joined: Thu Dec 01, 2011 12:35 pm

Re: Need Advice Concerning Letters of Recommendation

Postby Aiming For the Top » Fri Dec 23, 2011 2:22 am

Thank you both for your responses! In terms of the addendum, I'm not really sure how I can bring in the whole learning disability thing without one because my personal statement is about a subject that is more recent and shows how I've overcome adversity. I'm just feeling a little bit of reservation being retested because it's a lot of money and it doesn't guarantee that I'll get extended testing time for the LSAT. In fact it's really, really rare that LSAC grants extended testing time because they base requests on a case by case basis. They've even been sued multiple times for being discriminatory toward people with learning disabilities. So overall I'm scared of going through that whole process both financially and time wise just to get denied.




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