As law school costs rise faster than inflation, many students are facing a daunting financial burden. But it’s not just tuition: Room and board, student expenses, health insurance and other items all add up to make a legal education expensive. Adding up all the expenses can bring total cost of attendance to $100,000 or more per year.
These figures are based on the nine-month academic year and don’t include summer expenses. They also don’t take into account the costs of living in a particular area, which can vary widely. That’s why it’s important for prospective law students to do their homework, particularly on housing choices, consumer debt and other expenses. If possible, ridding yourself of consumer debt prior to entering law school is a good idea. And it pays to learn how to spend wisely—the Mizzou Law Thrifty Budget is a great place to start.
Those numbers may seem daunting, but it’s worth remembering that most law students do not pay the full “sticker price.” Tuition is typically reduced by grants and scholarships, which are usually merit-based and awarded primarily on UGPA and LSAT scores. Nationally, about a quarter of all law students receive these awards.
Other ways to reduce your law school costs are through programs that offer partial or full scholarships for those who want to pursue certain types of legal careers, such as public interest or corporate work. There are also a number of national programs to help with loan repayment, including the Herbert S. Garten Loan Repayment Assistance Program and the John R. Justice Student Loan Repayment Program for lawyers working in public defense. Law Tuition