What are my chances in a top 5 Tax LLM Programs Forum

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What are my chances in a top 5 Tax LLM Programs

Post by Thund3r » Thu Jul 01, 2021 11:16 pm

I'm a rising 3L at a tier 3 school sitting near the middle of the class with a 3.08 GPA i, however I hope to increase this to top 30% by graduation with somewhere near a 3.25. I have gotten a B in Income Tax and in Wills and Trusts. I'm participating in the Elder Law clinic now and will participating in the tax clinic come fall and will be taking a probate class in the spring. My passion is Tax but I am not not sure with my credentials if I can get into a program that would be worth the efforts, which I have deduced would be the top 5 programs. What advise do people have? All is welcome. Thanks

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Re: What are my chances in a top 5 Tax LLM Programs

Post by cavalier1138 » Fri Jul 02, 2021 6:07 am

My advice would be to focus on trying to land a job, period.

I'm not sure what the standards are for LLM admissions, but my understanding is that NYU/Georgetown (maybe Florida) are the only tax LLMs worth applying for. I really doubt median at a T3 with ok grades in your tax-related classes is going to be enough.

But what are your career goals? From the classes you listed, it sounds like you'd be targeting smaller tax/estates practice areas, and you don't need an LLM for that.


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Re: What are my chances in a top 5 Tax LLM Programs

Post by CanadianWolf » Fri Sep 10, 2021 10:47 am

OP: Your chances for an offer of admission to the LLM programs at NYU & Georgetown are not good. NYU is almost certain to be a decline. Florida is unlikely as well in my opinion.

It would have been helpful if you had identified what you think are the top 5 tax LLM programs. Northwestern is probably third (tied with Florida) and maybe BU is fifth.

A problem that you are likely to encounter is a lack of tax related work experience in addition to moderate grades in your tax courses.

Many tax LLM programs are worthwhile depending upon your goals & geographical preference. NYU is best for biglaw placement while Georgetown is second. Both place well at Big 4 accounting firms. If you prefer to work in a small firm or in a location that is not NYC or DC, then it is worthwhile to investigate other tax LLM programs located in the geographic region where you would like to practice.

Arguably better to have exposure to several adjunct professors rather than all full time tax LLM profs due to the work connections & real world guidance that you may receive if you do well. But, there is no indication that you will do well in a tax LLM program based on your tax grades in law school & based on your lack of tax related work experience.

The above poster offered solid advice suggesting that you should get some post law school legal work experience. This should help you to define your career goals & practice area preferences. If you strike out on obtaining employment immediately after law school, then an affordable tax LLM program may help whether you attend on a part-time or on a full-time basis.

Lots of Wash DC tax professionals attended tax LLM programs other than NYU or Georgetown and other than Florida, Northwestern, or BU.

For NYC biglaw, NYU is the best program by far. But, NYU is unlikely to admit you based on your current tax course grades & lack of tax related work experience. Nevertheless, the world of tax law practices extends well beyong just NYC & Wash DC.

If you are comfortable with the idea of working at a small law firm or at an accounting firm, then a tax LLM could be worthwhile. If interested in estate & gift tax practice, the University of Miami is worthwhile. If you want to work for the IRS, then almost any tax LLM program will help.

OP: Please feel free to PM me if you have any questions especially if you are on the West Coast as there are other factors to consider.

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