University of Washington LLM

University of Washington LLM Program

The University of Washington LLM program is open to both foreign law graduates and U.S. JD graduates. The program offers 6 different specialized degree options: the Health Law LLM, the Intellectual Property LLM, the Tax LLM, the Asian Law LLM, the Sustainable International Development LLM, and the Global Business Law LLM, or choose to pursue the General Law LLM. The Asian Law, Sustainable International Development, and Global Business Law LLM programs can only be completed full-time in a 9 month academic year, while the Health Law, Intellectual Property, Taxation, and General Law LLM tracks can be pursued part-time for up to 6 years. Generally, 36-40 quarter-hour credits are required to complete the LLM degree, depending on the track. However, students in the Health Law, Intellectual Property, or Taxation programs wishing to sit for the bar will need to take 45 quarter credit hours to qualify. Even with requirements, students in each track have the flexibility to choose from the University of Washington Law School courses to explore their interests and tailor their course of study.

The following four academic tracks are taken under the broader umbrella of the Asia, Global Business, and Development LLM program. A total of 40 credits is required for each program to receive the corresponding degree. All students picking any of the following four academic tracks must complete one or more seminars (depending on the track) which contain a substantial research paper requirement. The course American Legal System & Method is required for international students in order to give them an understanding of the U.S. legal and judicial system and methods of writing and research.

University of Washington LLM General Law Track

The General Law LLM is perfect for lawyers who want to gain a broad understanding of U.S. and international law without specializing in a particular area. Either the three courses Comparative Legal Studies Seminar, Graduate Writing Seminar in Asia, and Global Business and Development Law, or the Legal Problems of Economic Development Seminar are required, in addition to 3 approved electives. Students can also choose, with the Program Coordinator’s help, certain courses from other LLM programs and the second and third year JD offerings.

University of Washington LLM in Asian Law

The University of Washington LLM in Asian Law gives students expertise in Asian, Islamic, international commercial and international development law, particularly the legal systems of China, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Southeast Asia, and Central Asia. It is ideal for lawyers intending to practice in Asia, Europe, or the U.S. and engage in transnational professional dealings, become experts in policy, or enter academia. The Comparative Legal Studies Seminar and Graduate Writing Seminar in Asia, Global Business and Development Law are required, during which students will learn comparative research methods for Asian law, European law, and American law, as are three approved electives. Remaining courses can be chosen from certain second and third year JD curriculum.

University of Washington LLM in Global Business Law

The University of Washington LLM in Global Business Law prepares students to pursue careers as globally business lawyers, government lawyers working in economic policy, or entrepreneurs. The two seminars Comparative Legal Studies Seminar and Graduate Writing Seminar in Asia, Global Business and Development Law are required for the degree. In addition, students must choose three courses from a list of approved electives, and then are free to customize the rest of their study from general and JD courses. Through the required seminar courses, students will learn methods of how to comparatively study and analyze Asian, European, and American law, which will prepare them to undertake their own comparative research project. Courses are also designed to simulate actual global transactions, and students will have the opportunity to study international corporate governance, international trade, and international contracting, among other areas within global business law.

University of Washington LLM in Sustainable International Development Law

The LLM in Sustainable International Development Law is for students who wish to delve into some of the foremost problems facing the world today, such as hunger, poverty, overpopulation, distribution of resources, and political systems in the midst of transitions. Core courses in the program focus on issues such as climate change, land reform, redistribution of income, limiting populations, production of food and agriculture, and damage to the environment, among others. Graduates of the program are especially suited to work in organizations such as the World Bank, the Agency for International Development, the United Nations, as well as other governmental and nongovernmental organizations. The 5-credit Seminar on Legal Problems of Economic Development, which studies development from the international law perspective and how foreign aid interferes with or encourages the growth of democracy and the economy, and three approved elective courses are required for the degree. For the remainder of their courses, students can choose from 400-level courses and up within the University of Washington course offerings.

University of Washington LLM in Health Law

The University of Washington LLM in Health Law allows students to engage with the interdisciplinary nature of public health, medicine, law, and public policy. The courses Fundamentals of Health Law, Medical Malpractice, and Public Health Law are required, and a course in ethics of science, medicine, health, or research as part of the total 40 quarter hours in course credits needed to complete the degree. Topics in Law and Medicine or a one to two credit seminar involving a substantial research and writing project is required to cap off the degree. To round out the total credits, 28 additional credits of approved electives are necessary, 20 of which must be taken from the law school curriculum or cross-listed.

Within the Health Law LLM program, students can choose one of three concentrations:

To complete a concentration, students must take 15 courses in that area. Students can also participate in the Health Law Practicum, where they can earn one to six credits while gaining practical experience, networking opportunities with employers, and experiential learning.

University of Washington LLM in Intellectual Property and Policy

The LLM in Intellectual Property and Policy gives students the opportunity to study the legal issues surrounding intellectual property of emerging technology. Like the other University of Washington programs, the IP program requires 40 quarter-hours of credits, including the Intellectual Property Law Core, which is 6 credits, Intellectual Property Innovations in Science & Technology, also 6 credits, and Introduction to Legal Systems and Skills for Intellectual Property Law, which is 3 credits. In addition, the degree requires students to write a 30-40 page research paper and take approved elective courses in the following areas: Advanced IP, IP in Industry Context, IP in Other Disciplines, IP in Practice, and Tutorials.

University of Washington LLM in Taxation

The University of Washington LLM in Tax began in 1995 and allows students to gain in-depth knowledge of the field of tax law. The Pacific Northwestern location of the school is especially advantageous to Tax LLM students, as several high-profile corporations are also based in the area, including Starbucks, Nintendo, Microsoft, and

A total of 36 credits, all of which must be taken from the course offerings of the Graduate Tax Program, are required to complete the degree. With permission from the director, however, 6 of these credits may be taken from the JD curriculum. A minimum 3.00 GPA is required to graduate and students must receive at least a 2.7 in each course in order for it to count toward the LLM degree.

The Tax LLM curriculum covers all major areas of tax law, including international tax, federal, state, and local tax, trusts and estates, gift taxation, business planning, and estate planning. The program contains six required courses: Taxation of Corporations & Shareholders, Taxation of Partners & Partnerships, Estate & Gift Tax, Federal Tax Controversies & Procedures, Problems of Timing, Property Dispositions & Transactions, in addition to two of the following four core courses: International Taxation I and II, Compensation & Benefits I, and Corporate Reorganizations & Acquisitions.For the convenience of working students, classes usually take place in the late afternoons or evenings.

Students can also supplement their study with practical experience in the University of Washington’s Federal Tax Clinic, which has allowed past students to be involved in low-income administrative appeals, examinations, collection and court proceedings before the IRS in the U.S. Tax Court and in federal courts.

University of Washington LLM Admission

Admissions requirements and application materials vary from program to program. The general application deadline for international applicants in all programs is February 1, and international applicants can only apply to start in the fall semester. All international applicants to University of Washington LLM programs must have a basic law degree from their home country. Applicants to the Asian Law, Global Business, Sustainable International Development, and General LLM programs must have at least two years of work experience, except in certain cases specific to the applicant where the requirement may be waived. Applicants to the Health Law LLM, Intellectual Property LLM, and Taxation LLM are not required to have work experience though it may be preferred. The Tax Law LLM and Health Law LLM applications can be submitted completely online and through LSAC, while the other programs require materials to be mailed in.

A complete application for the LLM in Tax Law contains:

  • Online application
  • Statement of purpose (one page single-spaced)
  • Unofficial transcripts
  • Resume or CV
  • Letters of recommendation (2, with one preferably from a professor)
  • Application fee
  • English proficiency requirement: accepted TOEFL scores are typically above 580 paper-based, 237 computer-based, or 92 Internet-based, IELTS above 7.0, above 90 on the MLT, or above on the 65 Pearson Test of English Academic. Students can opt to also enroll in the UW Intensive English Program to satisfy the requirement. Students applying to waive the requirement must supply documentation from a university where English was the language of instruction, or of a degree they received from one of the following countries: the U.S., Bahamas, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Ireland, the UK, or Singapore. Students with scores in the following ranges can opt to participate in the Academic English Program: TOEFL paper-based score of 500-579, Internet-based 61-91, computer-based 173-236 , IELTS score between 6.0-6.9, MLT of 80-89, or PTE between 50-64
  • Statement requesting financial aid (optional)

To apply to one of the Asian Law, Global Business Law, Sustainable International Development Law programs, you must submit an:

  • Online application

With the following materials to be mailed in:

  • Printed online application
  • Official transcripts and degree statements
  • Resume
  • Statement of purpose
  • Letters of recommendation (2)
  • Statement of foreign language ability (for English-speaking Asian Law candidates)
  • Statement of Financial Ability and supporting documents
  • Interview (which all applicants will be called for after applications are reviewed)

The Health Law LLM application must contain the following materials:

  • Copy of application
  • Statement of purpose (2-3 pages)
  • Letters of recommendation (3)
  • Resume
  • TOEFL score copy

Applications for the IP LLM program must include the following:

  • Online application
  • Printed copy of online application
  • Official transcripts
  • Letter of recommendation (at least 1)
  • Resume
  • Statement of purpose
  • TOEFL score copy

Address to which applications and application materials must be mailed are as follows:

Asian Law Center – Admissions
University of Washington School of Law, Box 353020
Seattle, WA 98195-3020, USA

Asian Law Center – Admissions
University of Washington School of Law Room 443
William H. Gates Hall
4293 Memorial Way
Seattle, WA 98195-3020, USA

Health Law LL.M. Program Admissions
University of Washington, School of Law
William H. Gates Hall, Box 353020 Seattle, WA 98195-3020

IP Law and Policy LL.M. Program Admissions
University of Washington, School of Law
William H. Gates Hall, Box 353020
Seattle, WA 98195-3020

University of Washington LLM Tuition

Check the school website for University of Washington LLM tuition. Altogether, students can expect the cost of attendance for the program to be higher, taking into account health insurance, estimated room and board costs, books and supplies, transportation, and personal expenses.

University of Washington LLM Scholarship

The University of Washington School of Law offers limited scholarships to LLM students. All applicants receive consideration for research assistantships and tuition waivers. Because funding is limited, the school highly encourages students to explore outside sources of aid.

University of Washington LLM Employment

The University of Washington School of Law’s Center for Professional and Leadership Development keeps several career counselors for LLM students, including specific counselors for Intellectual Property and Tax LLM students. LLM students can register for on-campus recruiting at the Fall OCI Program, and take advantage of the Center’s many resources, including career coaches, mock interviews, resume and cover letter help, training events, and job search strategies.

Employment prospects and placements also varies by program. Health Law LLM students have completed externships and internships at these placements:

  • Seattle Children’s Hospital
  • Paul Allen Brain Institute
  • PATH
  • Seattle Biomedical Institute
  • Uplift International
  • Quorum IRB
  • University of Washington Hospital Department of Laboratory Medicine
  • Seattle Cancer Care Alliance – Risk Management
  • Legal Voice

IP LLM students have done externships at these offices, organizations, and corporations:

  • World Intellectual Property Organization
  • Washington State Attorney General
  • Intellectual Ventures
  • Institute for Systems Biology
  • US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit with Judge Rader
  • Washington Software Alliance
  • University of Washington TechTransfer Digital Ventures
  • University of Washington TechTransfer Invention Licensing
  • University of Washington Division of the Attorney General’s Office

IP LLM students have found jobs with the following employers:

  • Krishna & Saurastri India
  • Kim & Chang Korea
  • Preston, Gates & Ellis Taiwan
  • Chiayi District Court Taiwan
  • Stanford School of Law’s Center for Internet and Society
  • Nintendo IP Group in Seattle
  • De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek Amsterdam
  • Fuji Xerox Co., Ltd. Japan
  • Japan Patent Office
  • Ministry of Economic, Trade & Industry Japan
  • Sankyo Co., Ltd. Japan
  • Toshiba Corporation, Japan
  • Takeda Pharmaceutical Japan
  • Phillip Securities (Thailand) PCL
  • Euro-Jordanian Export Programme
  • Real Networks, Seattle
  • Stokes Laurence, P.S. Seattle
  • Vinson & Elkins, Plano, Texas
  • Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt, Seattle
  • Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman Palo Alto, California

University of Washington LLM Contact Information

Contact information varies by program. The best way to get information about academics, admissions policies and procedures, etc. is to contact the specific department of the LLM program you wish to pursue.

For information on the General LLM, Asian Law LLM, the Global Business Law LLM, or the Sustainable International Development Law LLM programs:

Asian Law Center
University of Washington School of Law
Box 353020
Seattle, WA 98195-3020
Phone: (206) 543-2283
Email the University of Washington School of Law:

For information on the Health Law LLM program:

Center for Law in Science and Global Health
University of Washington School of Law
William H. Gates Hall
Box 353020
Seattle, WA 98195-3020

Jennifer Snider
Program Manager
Phone: (206) 616-3809
Email the Center for Law in Science and Global Health:

For information on the Intellectual Property LLM program:

Intellectual Property Law and Policy LL.M. Admissions
University of Washington, School of Law
William H. Gates Hall
Box 353020
Seattle, WA 98195-3020
Phone: (206) 616-3809
Fax: (206) 543-5671
Email the Intellectual Property Law and Policy LL.M. Program:

For information on the Tax LLM program:

Graduate Program in Taxation
University of Washington School of Law
William H. Gates Hall
Box 353020
Seattle, WA 98195-3020
Phone: (206) 616-8340 | (206) 543-6704
Fax: (206) 685-4469
Email the Graduate Program in Taxation:

Image credit: Curtis Cronn