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Defer Enrollment, Can I Apply to Other Schools?

Posted: Sat Apr 25, 2020 6:56 pm
by Vickiwu
Hi all,
I was accepted this year to a Tier 1 law school, but not T14. Due to the Covid-19 situation, I was given an opportunity to defer the enrollment to next year.
My question is:
Is the deferral binding? Do I have to go back to this particular school next year? Or can I retake LSAT during the gap year, apply to T14 law schools for next cycle, and use this school as a safety school? (It sounds kinda unethical tho..)

I'd love to get some suggestions from you guys before asking the admission office. I appreciate any advices!

Re: Defer Enrollment, Can I Apply to Other Schools?

Posted: Sat Apr 25, 2020 7:19 pm
by nixy
You'll have to check the terms of your agreement with the specific school. Generally, if you defer at School A, you agree to attend School A a year later, you're not allowed to apply to other schools, and if you do, School A can/will tell the other schools and you'll get any acceptances rescinded. You're not required to go to law school (you can just not go at all), but if you do go, you have to go to the school where you're deferred.

That said, it's possible some schools are different or some people negotiate different outcomes, but to my understanding it would be uncommon.

And *that* said, the fact that your deferral is because of Covid-19 means it might be outside the normal deferral process, so you'd really have to talk to the school.

Re: Defer Enrollment, Can I Apply to Other Schools?

Posted: Sat Apr 25, 2020 10:49 pm
by QContinuum
Vickiwu wrote:Or can I retake LSAT during the gap year, apply to T14 law schools for next cycle, and use this school as a safety school? (It sounds kinda unethical tho..)

I'd love to get some suggestions from you guys before asking the admission office. I appreciate any advices!
I'd add that the concept of a "safety school" doesn't really make sense in the law school context. If your career goals require a T14 J.D., you should not attend a T1 law school, even if you don't get into any T14 law schools. The legal industry is very idiosyncratic and the law school you attend has a huge, career-long impact - one that often can't be overcome by hustling.