Attending law school has always been an expensive investment, as tuition prices seem to continually increase year after year. However, what was once only a seemingly impossible thought, is now looking more and more likely to occur sooner than later. That seemingly impossible thought is the tuition of attending law school increasing to $100,000 per year.
Over the past few years, there was a downward trend where law schools across the country saw their number of applicants decreasing. Many law schools that were once thriving with students, were struggling with their enrollment rates. To combat the issue, some law schools started accepting other standardized tests such as the GRE (Graduate Records Examination) as opposed to the LSAT (Law School Admission Test). Further, some law schools dropped their academic admission criteria in order to be able to maintain their enrollment numbers by admitting under qualified students. Certain law schools received criticism for this admission criteria change, such as they were setting these under qualified students up for failure because they would not be able to graduate law school and pass the bar examination.
However, more recently, the downward trend of law school applications took a turn for the best and as recent as this year, is now pointing upward again. https://www.lawyersofdistinction.com/law-school-applications-rising-2018/. As a result of this recent upward trend of enrollment, it seems that now is the time law schools will increase tuition.
Currently, tuition at many law schools across the country exceeds $50,000 per year. Some law schools tuition even exceeds $60,000 per year. However, these numbers do not take into account other living expenses for law students, such as housing and books. As an example, three top law schools: Harvard, Columbia, and New York University (NYU) tuition all exceeds $60,000 per year. Add on the other expenses mentioned above like housing and books and the total cost of attendance is over $92,000 per year.
When the first law school announces that its tuition per year is $100,000, it seems likely other schools will soon follow, citing reasons that they need to stay competitive. However, the reality is that many of these students end up with loans that they are never able to fully pay back.