Requesting an Application Fee Waiver: Part 2

Earlier in the year we talked about the fee waiver we were offering to anyone who applied by November 30, 2014. That date has come and gone, and we are now no longer offering a blanket waiver. However, it is still possible to have your application fee waived.

Option 1: Merit-based application fee waiver.

We don’t offer any merit-based application fee waiver codes through our office. If you email or call asking for one, we can’t help you out. However, we do offer merit-based waivers through LSAC’s Credential Referral Service (CRS). When you first create an LSAC account, you have the option of selecting the CRS box. You can also go back into your account check this box right now.

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Click the “change” link to register!

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Once you click change, this page will appear.

By registering, you allow law schools that use the CRS to access your account information and send you emails based on what’s found there. All of the people who meet our merit-based criteria for the year will be selected to receive a fee waiver through their LSAC account. We’ll shoot you a lovely purple email to inform you of this. If you receive a merit-based waiver, you won’t need a code and you won’t need to complete a separate form. Once your Northwestern Law application is complete and you go to check out, the payment page will be bypassed completely. Nifty!

The golden question remains: Do I meet your academic merit criteria? This one is a little harder to pin down because there isn’t a straight answer from year to year. We usually set up the criteria to look similar to our previous incoming class’s statistics. Not sure what those are? Check out our JD class profile.

We typically send out our CRS waivers four times per year, from October through early January. If you want a merit-based waiver, you unfortunately need to wait and see if you receive one from us. If you’re impatient, we also offer need-based waivers.

Option 2: Need-based application fee waiver.

Need-based fee waivers are provided directly from the Admissions Office. If you’re struggling to pay our application fee but would really like to apply, please fill out our need-based application fee waiver form. We don’t have strict need-based criteria that states only those making under X amount qualify. If you say you can’t pay, we’ll believe you. We just ask that you follow that statement up with an explanation and some further information. It’s up to you what you’d like to show as evidence of your financial hardship. Pay stubs? Tax return? Financial aid award letter? All perfectly fine to submit. But you have to submit something. Historically, the only people who don’t qualify for a need-based waiver are those who don’t complete the form in its entirety.

Option 3: Special circumstances.

We also grant application fee waivers to current Teach For America participants or alums, as well as those affiliated with the military. If you are a member of either organization, please complete our form and include some sort of verification of your involvement. TFAers, it’s usually best to include your acceptance letter. If you no longer have it, anything with your name on official letterhead works. Same goes for those serving in the armed forces. Something that indicates your official involvement will work perfectly.

If you received a need-based fee waiver directly from LSAC, we honor those as well. Again, we just need verification that LSAC granted you the waiver. LSAC typically provides awardees a letter indicating that an LSAC fee waiver has been granted. Just complete our form and upload this letter and you will be all set.

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