Top Tier American Law Schools v Top Tier UK Law Schools


I want to apply next year. Which LLM is superior, UK or US?

How would you rate Harvard, CLS and NYU v. Oxford, Cambridge and LSE?

Looking forward to your inputs.
I want to apply next year. Which LLM is superior, UK or US?

How would you rate Harvard, CLS and NYU v. Oxford, Cambridge and LSE?

Looking forward to your inputs.
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Santa
The degree is totally different, so imo not comparable.
The degree is totally different, so imo not comparable.
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lastlear
Get out of here, is this some joke?
Tell us which country is superior UK or USA?

Columbus must be rolling in his grave?
Get out of here, is this some joke?
Tell us which country is superior UK or USA?

Columbus must be rolling in his grave?

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You seem to have got me wrong. I guess I did not communicate properly. What I meant was, which degree is more rigorous and academically more challenging? Which degree is more marketable and what are the benefits of either degree. I did not mean to compare the nations at all. If I were to rephrase the question, it would be "How are the advantages from a top tier American LLM different from that of a UK LLM?"
You seem to have got me wrong. I guess I did not communicate properly. What I meant was, which degree is more rigorous and academically more challenging? Which degree is more marketable and what are the benefits of either degree. I did not mean to compare the nations at all. If I were to rephrase the question, it would be "How are the advantages from a top tier American LLM different from that of a UK LLM?"
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Santa
If you're from Europe:

US LLM:
- More practical
- Knowledge of US law more important for fe. M&A lawyers in Europe
- Whole different atmosphere and incredible experience
- People from the whole wide world: not too many from Europe

UK LLM:
- Less practical/more theoretical
- Less expensive
- Lots of Europeans.
If you're from Europe:

US LLM:
- More practical
- Knowledge of US law more important for fe. M&A lawyers in Europe
- Whole different atmosphere and incredible experience
- People from the whole wide world: not too many from Europe

UK LLM:
- Less practical/more theoretical
- Less expensive
- Lots of Europeans.
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13243546
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Ruleoflaw
I'd go to LSE..
I'd go to LSE..
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Gloss
Just want to add a comment here. The US market is much more open to foreign lawyers than the UK market. Also, an interesting fact is that with your US LLM you will be able to take the NY Bar (or Bar of some other states in the US), but in the UK the LLM does not qualify you to take the Solicitors exam. But the funny point is that with your NY Bar you can take the Solicitors exam.... so even if you want to stay in England, maybe would be better to come to the US. I am givinf the point of view of non-Europeans here, because I know that rules for Europeans are different. Good luck!
Just want to add a comment here. The US market is much more open to foreign lawyers than the UK market. Also, an interesting fact is that with your US LLM you will be able to take the NY Bar (or Bar of some other states in the US), but in the UK the LLM does not qualify you to take the Solicitors exam. But the funny point is that with your NY Bar you can take the Solicitors exam.... so even if you want to stay in England, maybe would be better to come to the US. I am givinf the point of view of non-Europeans here, because I know that rules for Europeans are different. Good luck!
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Llisbon
Hi,

If you have a civil law backround and took the NY bar after an US LLM, will you be able to able to take the Sollicitors exam direclty?

thanks
Hi,

If you have a civil law backround and took the NY bar after an US LLM, will you be able to able to take the Sollicitors exam direclty?

thanks
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M_T_Cicero
Essentially, Santa is completely correct. The programs cannot really be compared. The majority of American LLMs are practically focussed so aren't comparable to the majority of UK LLMs. If you wish to practise in either of the nations, then I'd agree with the above; look to America. The UK legal job market particularly welcoming to overseas students and an LLM, even if you obtain a place at Oxford or Cambridge, qualifies you to do nothing. You'd then probably have to sit CPE/GDL (because you wouldn't be qualified in the basic UK subjects), and then you'd have to sit the LPC before trying to find a training contract. Both courses can be terrifically expensive and, as far as I know, neither qualify for scholarships or the like.

If, on the other hand, you just want to study for a year before going home, I can't see that you'd be particularly limited in your future options by studying at a top universities from either.
Essentially, Santa is completely correct. The programs cannot really be compared. The majority of American LLMs are practically focussed so aren't comparable to the majority of UK LLMs. If you wish to practise in either of the nations, then I'd agree with the above; look to America. The UK legal job market particularly welcoming to overseas students and an LLM, even if you obtain a place at Oxford or Cambridge, qualifies you to do nothing. You'd then probably have to sit CPE/GDL (because you wouldn't be qualified in the basic UK subjects), and then you'd have to sit the LPC before trying to find a training contract. Both courses can be terrifically expensive and, as far as I know, neither qualify for scholarships or the like.

If, on the other hand, you just want to study for a year before going home, I can't see that you'd be particularly limited in your future options by studying at a top universities from either.
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Thank you for those insights. But as far as the training contract is concerned, a couple of senior students from my college have already earned them without even embarking on the LLM. I also fail to understand why the UK firms would give more importance to a US LLM.

@ M_T_Cicero, thank you for your comments, I am looking to come back to my home country, but the security of a job never hurts!
It's way cheaper to study in the UK than the US and with the recession do yo really think that the US market will be open to foreign LLM's?
Thank you for those insights. But as far as the training contract is concerned, a couple of senior students from my college have already earned them without even embarking on the LLM. I also fail to understand why the UK firms would give more importance to a US LLM.

@ M_T_Cicero, thank you for your comments, I am looking to come back to my home country, but the security of a job never hurts!
It's way cheaper to study in the UK than the US and with the recession do yo really think that the US market will be open to foreign LLM's?
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Just one more thing. An LLM from Oxbridge or LSE on the CV, does it not earn any favour from the legal industry or employers in the UK? These are the top schools there!
Just one more thing. An LLM from Oxbridge or LSE on the CV, does it not earn any favour from the legal industry or employers in the UK? These are the top schools there!
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koala
Hi,

If you have a civil law backround and took the NY bar after an US LLM, will you be able to able to take the Sollicitors exam direclty?

thanks


You are correct Llisbon. After the NY Bar you can take the QLTT (Qualified Lawyers Transfer Test) in the UK. But they changed the requirements this year and it is getting trickier for applicants from outside the EU.
<blockquote>Hi,

If you have a civil law backround and took the NY bar after an US LLM, will you be able to able to take the Sollicitors exam direclty?

thanks
</blockquote>

You are correct Llisbon. After the NY Bar you can take the QLTT (Qualified Lawyers Transfer Test) in the UK. But they changed the requirements this year and it is getting trickier for applicants from outside the EU.
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Llisbon
Hi koala: what do you mean by trickier?
is it that we now have to work for two years in London under the supervision of a UK qualified lawyer?
Hi koala: what do you mean by trickier?
is it that we now have to work for two years in London under the supervision of a UK qualified lawyer?
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koala
Hi koala: what do you mean by trickier?
is it that we now have to work for two years in London under the supervision of a UK qualified lawyer?

Correct. I am from the EU so I never had to deal with this fortunately...
<blockquote>Hi koala: what do you mean by trickier?
is it that we now have to work for two years in London under the supervision of a UK qualified lawyer?</blockquote>
Correct. I am from the EU so I never had to deal with this fortunately...
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koala
Just one more thing. An LLM from Oxbridge or LSE on the CV, does it not earn any favour from the legal industry or employers in the UK? These are the top schools there!

In my experience UK employers do not like LLMs very much even from top schools. The standard in the UK is the LLB and UK students who attend an LLM are mainly the ones who did not get a job in the first place after their LLB (apart from certain specialised LLMs). Of course things are different in your home jurisdiction. What I am just saying is do not expect UK employers to be more impressed with your US LLM than US employers.
<blockquote>Just one more thing. An LLM from Oxbridge or LSE on the CV, does it not earn any favour from the legal industry or employers in the UK? These are the top schools there!</blockquote>
In my experience UK employers do not like LLMs very much even from top schools. The standard in the UK is the LLB and UK students who attend an LLM are mainly the ones who did not get a job in the first place after their LLB (apart from certain specialised LLMs). Of course things are different in your home jurisdiction. What I am just saying is do not expect UK employers to be more impressed with your US LLM than US employers.
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Imo, the versatility and vitality of US LAW school provide countless opportunity for any individuals.Plus , at us law school you will be getting this chance to meet bunch of people from a variety of legal systems which contributes to enrich your knowledge toward existing legal systems in international territory . keep in mind that the counter parting of international student and American student seems useful to develop ability and exchange the ideas of both sides.
I am not taking away anything from UK law school( although I am totally ignorant about them) but to me US law schools are by far better.
Imo, the versatility and vitality of US LAW school provide countless opportunity for any individuals.Plus , at us law school you will be getting this chance to meet bunch of people from a variety of legal systems which contributes to enrich your knowledge toward existing legal systems in international territory . keep in mind that the counter parting of international student and American student seems useful to develop ability and exchange the ideas of both sides.
I am not taking away anything from UK law school( although I am totally ignorant about them) but to me US law schools are by far better.
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M_T_Cicero
A UK LLM doesn't qualify you to do anything, so an LLM from any UK insitution is useless without other relevant qualifications. Therefore, you'd not find much, if anything, in the legal market without taking on more study.

In response to Koala's comment above regarding UK LLMs, I'd suggest you are actually somewhat mistaken. In the UK, it is true to say solicitors firms have often see an LLM as a wasted year because the UK version are often of theoretical and academic value rather than of practical use but this attitude is beginning to change and, as for the bar, it is completely outdated. For example, I doubt you'd have any real hope of getting a pupillage in a decent London set without an Oxbridge LLM. Oh, and I think you'll find that the quality of the students on such courses are actually among the best LLB graduates, not those who could not get a job in the first place.
A UK LLM doesn't qualify you to do anything, so an LLM from any UK insitution is useless without other relevant qualifications. Therefore, you'd not find much, if anything, in the legal market without taking on more study.

In response to Koala's comment above regarding UK LLMs, I'd suggest you are actually somewhat mistaken. In the UK, it is true to say solicitors firms have often see an LLM as a wasted year because the UK version are often of theoretical and academic value rather than of practical use but this attitude is beginning to change and, as for the bar, it is completely outdated. For example, I doubt you'd have any real hope of getting a pupillage in a decent London set without an Oxbridge LLM. Oh, and I think you'll find that the quality of the students on such courses are actually among the best LLB graduates, not those who could not get a job in the first place.
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koala
In response to Santa's post, I do not share your views 100% with regards to UK LLMs

UK LLM:
- Less practical/more theoretical...it depends pretty much on the subject, teacher, institution, etc. In my experience my LLM at KCL was quite practical in IT, IP, Telecoms.
- Less expensive: True
- Lots of Europeans. I do not agree. Many students were coming from Asia and to a lesser extent Latin America and the US...

Overall a UK LLM is not a lesser cultural experience. Europe is amazing and most students loved their LLM year. It is just different from the US, that's all!
In response to Santa's post, I do not share your views 100% with regards to UK LLMs

UK LLM:
- Less practical/more theoretical...it depends pretty much on the subject, teacher, institution, etc. In my experience my LLM at KCL was quite practical in IT, IP, Telecoms.
- Less expensive: True
- Lots of Europeans. I do not agree. Many students were coming from Asia and to a lesser extent Latin America and the US...

Overall a UK LLM is not a lesser cultural experience. Europe is amazing and most students loved their LLM year. It is just different from the US, that's all!

</blockquote>
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koala
A UK LLM doesn't qualify you to do anything, so an LLM from any UK insitution is useless without other relevant qualifications. Therefore, you'd not find much, if anything, in the legal market without taking on more study.

In response to Koala's comment above regarding UK LLMs, I'd suggest you are actually somewhat mistaken. In the UK, it is true to say solicitors firms have often see an LLM as a wasted year because the UK version are often of theoretical and academic value rather than of practical use but this attitude is beginning to change and, as for the bar, it is completely outdated. For example, I doubt you'd have any real hope of getting a pupillage in a decent London set without an Oxbridge LLM. Oh, and I think you'll find that the quality of the students on such courses are actually among the best LLB graduates, not those who could not get a job in the first place.


M_T_Cicero, I agree with what you say and in particular on the Oxbridge requirement. Despite being an excellent program, my LLM from KCL without the qualification did not give me an edge here in the UK. It would have in my home jurisdiction France. Overall I would do it again because competence-wise I learned to work and think in English and that definitely helped me stay here for 6 years.

Basically every individual story is unique and let's just say that without Oxbridge you will probably need to work a little harder at making things work out ...but nothing's easy for anybody anymore anyway.
<blockquote>A UK LLM doesn't qualify you to do anything, so an LLM from any UK insitution is useless without other relevant qualifications. Therefore, you'd not find much, if anything, in the legal market without taking on more study.

In response to Koala's comment above regarding UK LLMs, I'd suggest you are actually somewhat mistaken. In the UK, it is true to say solicitors firms have often see an LLM as a wasted year because the UK version are often of theoretical and academic value rather than of practical use but this attitude is beginning to change and, as for the bar, it is completely outdated. For example, I doubt you'd have any real hope of getting a pupillage in a decent London set without an Oxbridge LLM. Oh, and I think you'll find that the quality of the students on such courses are actually among the best LLB graduates, not those who could not get a job in the first place. </blockquote>

M_T_Cicero, I agree with what you say and in particular on the Oxbridge requirement. Despite being an excellent program, my LLM from KCL without the qualification did not give me an edge here in the UK. It would have in my home jurisdiction France. Overall I would do it again because competence-wise I learned to work and think in English and that definitely helped me stay here for 6 years.

Basically every individual story is unique and let's just say that without Oxbridge you will probably need to work a little harder at making things work out ...but nothing's easy for anybody anymore anyway.
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