If you are doing it now, I think it should be okay since, like you said, school may not start reviewing yet.
Well, think of an extreme scenario when ad com is deciding between you and another applicant, whom is deferred from the ED pool, they may give the other a notch.
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vanwinkle wrote:Also, your interpretation is kind of weak. It only applies to the current cycle because if accepted you can only attend in that cycle? That's simply not true. You can defer matriculation after being accepted and start in a later year. In that sense the contract can clearly apply to future cycles; if you need to defer and attend in a later year they can give you the option of deferring and still keep you within the terms of the contract.
The plain language of the contract indicates an intent to enroll at Columbia, period, and that th school will enforce this by sharing contract information to other schools. Anyone who thinks they can simply blow off a contract like this with no repercussions at other schools is incredibly naive.
Unless I misunderstood what he said, your deferral scenario is entirely with the scope of philly's interpretation, inasmuch as Columbia will continue to have a valid offer of admission extended to the candidate. Calling it "weak" may be cool on the internets, but his interpretation makes more sense.
The penalties in the contract seem to consist entirely of: "Failure by admitted Early Decision applicants to honor their aforementioned commitments will result in Columbia revoking its offer of admission." It's not like they're not coming after them for financial redress of some kind. Of course no other school will admit the candidate that cycle (or at least that's the implication, I don't know how true it is). But the following cycle, say the candidate applies to Harvard. Is Columbia going to continue supplying the candidate's name to Harvard, stating "look, we don't have an outstanding offer of admission, but they ED'd once, so hands off." I don't think Columbia has any particular interest in alienating the candidate in that fashion, nor does Harvard have any particular interest in complying. If there was an outstanding obligation (financial or otherwise) that the candidate owed Columbia it would be different.
Your interpretation does however make sense if the Early Decision program offers the candidate a standing offer to attend Columbia Law School at any point in the future. I thought they only applied to this admissions cycle though?