Law School: Canada vs USA

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LawyerGirl2014
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Joined: Sun Jun 17, 2012 7:23 pm

Law School: Canada vs USA

Postby LawyerGirl2014 » Sun Jun 17, 2012 8:01 pm

I'm currently finishing my BA at a university in the US. I will graduate a year early and intend on entering law school. I am debating attending a university in the US the would allow me to obtain the credentials to practice in both the US and Canada, or pursing my law degree at one of the Canadian universities. My desire is to work in public interest law. I have no desire for BigLaw, however, I would like a job using the skills I've spent three years cultivating. The current employment prospects for lawyers in the US are dismal to say the least. Are the prospects in Canada more favorable? Whether I attend law school in the US or Canada, I eventually plan to make Canada my permanent residence. Any information/ advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank You
Last edited by LawyerGirl2014 on Sun Jun 17, 2012 9:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

LawSchoolChampion
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Re: Law School: Canada vs USA

Postby LawSchoolChampion » Sun Jun 17, 2012 8:52 pm

Tagging this thread because I'm interested.

bbsg
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Re: Law School: Canada vs USA

Postby bbsg » Mon Jun 18, 2012 7:09 am

Generally speaking if you want to set up long-term in Canada then it's best to attend a Canadian school.

a) Cost - Except for UofT, the cost of a comparable legal education in Canada is much lower. The only added benefit of going to UofT rather than, say, Osgoode or Queen's, is the BigLaw connections. You already said you don't much care for that path.

b) Networking - Sort of self evident, but students in law school in Canada will be lawyers in Canada. You'll likely find yourself on the outside looking in if you go to the States.

c) NCA Process - If you get your law degree in the States, you can look forward to a year long process to affirm your credentials (whether you went to Harvard or Bond, Australia, it's the same drawn out process). After this, you'll then need to article for a year before the bar. You're looking at graduating with a more expensive American degree just to need to sit out two years on technicalities before you are even called to the bar.

d) The market -- The legal market in Canada, while not foolproof, is nonetheless in much better shape than the legal market in the US. It helps that Canada has so few schools, of course. If you isolated the employment stats of Canadian grads against T14 grads, you may find a more similar spread. And, of course, the T14 grads are likely being paid much better. But that's because they want to work in the more lucrative American markets, and you've already indicated you want to settle in Canada. A degree from NYU's earning power ends up being the same as a degree from Windsor Law if you want to settle down in non-BigLaw Canada, so the income question sort of fizzles.

Now I'm not an expert, but I've been looking at this Canada/US thing with some interest. Every single person I trust and respect on the subject has stated quite firmly that the wild card is where you want to settle permanently. If you're unsure, there are a host of things to ascertain before you make a decision. However, if you already know you want to settle in Canada, then you should absolutely be attending law school in Canada. The only time I've seen anyone who really prides themselves on being "in the know" debate this is if it's a question of a Canadian school or YHS, and even then it seems (in my anecdotal experience) that 50% still decide to go with the Canadian school.

So people honestly end up choosing Osgoode Hall over Stanford Law. That should offer some understanding of how needlessly complicated and potentially expensive the process of settling in Canada with an American JD can be.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Law School: Canada vs USA

Postby CanadianWolf » Mon Jun 18, 2012 9:50 am

OP: I believe that you recently asked the same question under a different username. Regardless, the key in the dual-degree programs is to finish in the country in which you plan to practice.

Do you have a GPA & LSAT score ?

Among the four year dual degree programs:

Consider Houston's new program with Alberta. Hawaii has a program with either BC or Victoria.
Michigan State with Ottawa (I know US citizens who have been offered 3 years full tuition & very low tuition for the final year (of two) at Ottawa.)

Not sure how to incorporate your interest in public interest law into a dual-degree program. Perhaps attending Victoria would satisfy your interests in Canada & in public interest law.

LawyerGirl2014
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Joined: Sun Jun 17, 2012 7:23 pm

Re: Law School: Canada vs USA

Postby LawyerGirl2014 » Mon Jun 18, 2012 9:58 am

Thank You for your responses.CanadianWolf, if this topic has been discussed before I was unaware as I was recently referred to this site yesterday. I do appreciate your suggestions. My GPA is a 3.9 and my LSAT is 165.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Law School: Canada vs USA

Postby CanadianWolf » Mon Jun 18, 2012 10:02 am

With your numbers (165/3.9), you should do very well with respect to law school admissions in both countries. If you are a Canadian or other non-US citizen, then you need to research which law schools offer scholarships to non-citizens.

LawyerGirl2014
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Joined: Sun Jun 17, 2012 7:23 pm

Re: Law School: Canada vs USA

Postby LawyerGirl2014 » Mon Jun 18, 2012 10:13 am

I'm a US citizen and from my understanding some of the Canadian universities (U of T comes to mind) allows US students to take part in the US federal loan program. However, it seems the terms of the loans have changed and many universities that were once participants are no longer taking part. I'm currently contacting the schools I'm interested in to find out more information about the aid I would be elgible.

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banjo
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Re: Law School: Canada vs USA

Postby banjo » Mon Jun 18, 2012 4:18 pm

Here are all the US-Canada dual JDs that I'm aware of. Honestly, all of these seem so-so to me. They should bring NYU-Osgoode back.

Hawaii-British Columbia
http://www.law.hawaii.edu/ubc
--LinkRemoved--

Colorado-Alberta
--LinkRemoved--
--LinkRemoved-- (PDF)
http://www.registrar.ualberta.ca/calend ... 106.4.html

Houston-Calgary
--LinkRemoved--

Detroit Mercy-Windsor
http://www.law.udmercy.edu/index.php/ac ... jd-program
http://www.uwindsor.ca/law/dual-jd

MSU-Ottawa
http://www.law.msu.edu/academics/ac-multi-llb-ott.html
http://www.commonlaw.uottawa.ca/en/prog ... ogram.html

American-Ottawa
http://www.wcl.american.edu/dualdegree/ottawa/
http://www.commonlaw.uottawa.ca/en/prog ... ogram.html

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dannyocean29
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Re: Law School: Canada vs USA

Postby dannyocean29 » Thu Jun 28, 2012 9:53 pm

woo USA




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