Whether you are working as a paralegal or looking to make a change into a whole different vocation, a law school online may be a good fit.
Over the past decade, online learning has gained great traction. Engaging learning opportunities on a digital platform provides hands-on experience needed to pass the bar exam and gain steady employment.
Many of the best online colleges have been stepping-up to meet professional demands and opportunities.
Accreditation is an issue for online law schools as only a handful of schools in the U.S. meet standards set by the American Bar Association. If you’re the kind of person who doesn’t mind taking a risk, then perhaps it’s time to explore your options. Your school is out there, waiting to open its doors.
The world of law, however, has been slow to adapt to online trends. Several online law degrees are keeping up with professional expectations in terms of examination and professional performance.
These digital opportunities offer industry innovations that provide students complete access to an affordable, flexible education. Programs offer online components that integrate traditional classroom learning with adaptive online instruction techniques.
Only certain schools offer exclusively online law-related programs including online Juris Doctor program and Masters of Law. Our helpful ranking organizes data from a variety of sources and studies to provide you with the best online law schools.
Licensure and Practicum eligibility for practicing law is granted in the state in which the law degree was completed and qualifications vary. Students should meet with advisors to understand these restrictions.
What are the best online law schools?
A wide range of online law school options helps students reach their goals. Our top 30 ranking is determined by three factors: student feedback, graduate achievement, and accreditation.
Responses from current and past students come from a range of online student rating sites. Student responses topics include program selection, campus, and faculty. Graduates achievement is a calculation of financial cost against the average salary of graduates.
A school’s accreditation depends on student/faculty ratio, entrance exams, graduation rate, reputation, and endowment. Data is from the National Center for Education Statistics’ IPEDS database, Payscale, individual college websites, and U.S. News and World Report.
College Choice Score: 100
Average Net Price: $31,668
Villanova University offers an LL.M. in Taxation fully online. This degree is one of the most popular among practicing attorneys and Villanova offers one of the best options in the country. Ranked high in both law school and innovation, the school is regionally accredited and the law school has independent accreditation by the American Bar Association.
The LL.M. in Taxation is an advanced degree in the realm of tax law. Students who graduate with this degree will be practicing attorneys in elevated positions. Tax law seems to be essential in America’s economic evolving climate. The degree focuses on:
- A thorough understanding of the field
- Tax laws and policies
- Changing face of tax law
Most faculty and staff have worked in law in some capacity. Students partake in study and tutoring groups, research, library functions, and consultation with advisors. This is the best tax program for any lawyer in the country, the overall experience of attending Villanova makes it the top pick.
Washington University in St Louis
College Choice Score: 96.94
Average Net Price: $33,261
Washington University in St. Louis is home to one of the only schools with a full suite of degrees for practicing attorneys. The most popular programs from the regionally and bar association accredited school are for international lawyers.
- What makes WUSTL’s law school online interesting is that the school does not offer the most common degree, the J.D., online. The school has a variety of graduate law degrees that are perfect for foreign attorneys. The online portal offers:
- LL.M. in U.S. Law
- M.L.S. for non-lawyers
- Dual LL.M. in U.S. Law and International Corporate Law
Full accessibility allows students to explore the library, bookstore, advising, and tutoring services. With the addition of 24-hour a day tech support, WashU is a serious contender for the best law school with a strong online premise.
University of Southern California
College Choice Score: 92.89
Average Net Price: $31,384
The University of Southern California is one of the best online schools in the country for law students. Gould School of Law consistently ranks in the top 20 best law schools according to U.S. News and World Report. It currently ranks as one of the top institutions for international enrollment by OpenDoors.
The most popular degree from the online portal at Gould is the LL.M. The degree is designed for international attorneys who wish to practice law in the United States. This is one of the only fully online degrees at the graduate level of law that has the acquiescence of the American Bar Association. Students can take advantage of:
- Discussion forums
- Study groups
Courses are taught asynchronously to accommodate students in different time zones and all exams are given by a proctor is a student’s community. Students will have full access to the school’s online law library, bookstore, and advising services.
University of Florida
College Choice Score: 87.13
Average Net Price: $14,610
The Levin College of Law of the University of Florida is home to some of the best law degrees in the country. Big moves are being made by the regionally accredited school provides online J.D. and LL.M. programs. While strictly not an online institution, Levin has made it a mission to provide students with an alternative way to learn.
Online courses at Levin are taught asynchronously, although some electives do require synchronous coursework. And as the school continues to create more courses, even more, online services will come online through the law school. Currently, the school provides:
- 24-hour technical support
- Online law library
- Virtual bookstore
Students should note, the ABA currently requires students receive a maximum of 15 credit hours of online instruction to take the bar. This standardized policy applies for every state.
New York University
College Choice Score: 85.37
Average Net Price: $35,106
New York University is creating a law school online for practicing attorneys. Currently, the school offers the Executive LL.M. in Tax, a popular and competitive program that is perfect for lawyers who specialize in this field. This school is regionally accredited by and holds independent accreditation by the American Bar Association.
The Executive LL.M. in Tax focuses on the intricacies of the law, from mergers to acquisitions. Tax policy is a large part of the program as students spend most of this year-long program focusing on how the law as it pertains to tax. It is a great advanced degree for any practicing attorney. Students can access:
- Tech support
- Advising desk
- Tutoring sessions
Asynchronous courses are available on school’s online learning management system. NYU faculty and support services come through the portal’s discussion forums, email, telephone, and even Skype. Students sit-in for midterms and final exams at home via a video proctoring device.
College Choice Score: 82.74
Average Net Price: $32,732
Boston University has a growing law school presence boosted by the school’s reputation as a top ten ranked school for law. The school now offers the well-known degree LL.M. in Taxation online. Regionally accreditation and backing by the ABA make this a top choice.
An LL.M. in Taxation is an incredible addition to the resume of any new attorney. This advanced degree helps remote learners become valued members of the team. Students can access:
- Discussion forums
- Online law library
- Student support services
- Full technical support
Courses are provided asynchronously, allowing a student to study when their schedule permits. All resources are available wherever there is an internet connection.
University of Pittsburgh-Pittsburgh Campus
College Choice Score: 81.58
Average Net Price: $24,311
The University of Pittsburgh offers an incredible legal degree for practicing attorneys. Through the School of Law, the school offers the LL.M. for Active Professionals, a collaborative online experience that provides students with the skills necessary to succeed. The school is regionally accredited and supported by ABA.
This online degree is designed for practicing attorneys who wish to advance their knowledge of the law in the United States. It is a popular, selective, and has its own optional two-week residential program in the Washington, D.C. area. Student services include:
- Online law library
- Advising services
- 24-hour technical support
The online program has no mandatory residency requirements. Students will take eight courses to graduate and it is possible to complete in two years.
George Washington University
College Choice Score: 80.76
Average Net Price: $37,404
George Washington University offers the Master of Professional Studies in Law Firm Management for lawyers and non-lawyers. This degree is not a lawyer-specific degree, but it does relate to the day-to-day running activities of firms in the United States.
This is an exceptional program for students who are interested in learning how to best oversee a law firm. It is best used to advance the careers of business and law professionals alike. The MPS in Law Firm Management is a 30-credit degree that can be completed in a year by full-time students. Students can access:
- Student support services
- Online bookstore
- Full technical support
All courses are taught asynchronously, helping professionals understand, develop, and integrate new-found knowledge. Students follow coursework essential to administrative roles within a law firm.
University of Tulsa
College Choice Score: 78.44
Average Net Price: $25,355
The University of Tulsa’s College of Law offers two online law degree programs, the Master of Jurisprudence in Energy Law and the Master of Jurisprudence in Indian Law. These rare graduate law degrees are held completely online adhering to Tulsa’s exceptional standard.
The MJEL focuses on energy law and policies, the changing face of how the government views energy, and the sustainable legal efforts to conserve it. The MJIL focuses on American Indian tribes, their interests, and more. This degree is perfect for professionals who work closely with this demographic. Students choose between:
- Master of Jurisprudence in Energy Law
- Master of Jurisprudence in Indian Law
Both programs were designed specifically for non-lawyers. Therefore, students graduating with either degree are not able to take the bar or able to become a licensed attorney. Each program offers independent study projects.
University of Illinois at Springfield
College Choice Score: 78.34
Average Net Price: $12,308
The University of Illinois at Springfield offers an online law degree in legal studies. This program is perfect for professionals who would like to learn more about the law or for lawyers from other countries who need an introduction to the U.S. legal system. This university is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
The Master’s Degree in Legal Studies doesn’t come from the law school but is rather housed in the online portal. This was a calculated move by the university to ensure that online instruction was taken seriously alongside well-trained faculty and staff. The program focuses on:
- Legal Theory
- Law in American society
- Professional skills
Courses are synchronously and asynchronously, allowing students the option to choose methods that work best for them. Collaborative weekly assignments and projects are par for the course as the school moves to bring-on other law degrees online.
Michigan State University
College Choice Score: 78.27
Average Net Price: $14,601
Michigan State University is known for having one of the best food law programs in the country. This is an exclusively online degree that was created for everyone, not just lawyers, and it can be an exciting addition to any resume. The College of Law is accredited by the American Bar Association.
The online Master’s Degree in Global Food Law title will depend on a student’s professional background. Upon graduation, attorneys will be granted the LL.M., while non-lawyers will earn the Master of Jurisprudence. Topics include:
- Complexities of food law all over the world
- Religious, cultural, and political impacts on foods
- Food standards and regulations
Courses are taught in an asynchronous format as discussion forums and online study groups foster an intimate learning setting. Students receive access to the MSU’s online support services desk as well as online research materials and library books.
University of Vermont
College Choice Score: 77.92
Average Net Price: $17,297
Vermont Law School hosts a variety of online law degrees. This suite of degrees, including rare specializations, set a foundation for legal expertise in a variety of fields. This school is regionally accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges and holds accreditation by the American Bar Association.
VLS offers six different online law degrees created for practicing attorneys with prior interest or knowledge of in a variety of fields. Three specializations include Energy Law, Environmental Law, and Food and Agricultural Law. Three master’s degrees include:
- Master of Energy Regulation and Law
- Master of Environmental Law and Policy
- Master of Food and Agricultural Law and Policy
Degrees can be completed in as little as 18 months with no on-campus requirements. Students will learn through asynchronous courses, discussions, lectures, and weekly activities. The school has a robust student support services suite including technical support, an online library, tutoring services, and more.
The University of Alabama
College Choice Score: 75.26
Average Net Price: $18,814
The University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa offers an LL.M. in Taxation online for eligible students. One of the most innovative online law degree programs in the country and offers practicing lawyers the chance to become specialized in this challenging field.
The LL.M in Taxation from Bama By Distance online portal is completely available online with no on-campus residencies. The focus is placed on specialization for licensed attorneys to practice law in the tax sector. Students will learn:
- How the tax code can change
- Why tax law is important
- How tax law affects the lives of citizens and governments
Students are treated to synchronous courses with unlimited access to faculty and support services. Full technical support is available for students who wish to pursue their education online.
College Choice Score: 75.18
Average Net Price: $40,615
Drexel has made a concerted effort to bring more of its law school courses online to busy and ambitious students. At the Thomas R. Kline School of Law, J.D. students will have the opportunity to supplement their degree with around 15 credit hours of online courses. Work is applied towards a law degree from an online school, per the instruction of the New York State Board of Law Examiners.
Unlike many of the schools listed on this ranking, Drexel does not believe that asynchronous courses are the only pathway towards understanding law. Therefore, the school requires that students be graded on consistency and quality of participation. This comes in the form of:
- Weekly activities
- Scheduled quizzes
- Academic papers
Students who take online courses are given access to the full suite of Drexel Online services, including the online library and bookstore, advising services, and full technical support. This is the perfect university to help any law student supplement their degree while studying in their own community.
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
College Choice Score: 74.29
Average Net Price: $15,648
The University of Nebraska at Lincoln has an incredible opportunity for students interested in earning a law degree online. Regionally accredited courses are designed for licensed attorneys already working within government agencies and law firms who focus on the field.
An LL.M. in Space, Cyber, and Telecommunications Law is available almost completely online. Students also have access to technical support, an online library, online student-specific advising, and tutoring services. The program focuses upon:
- Space law
- Cyber law
- Telecommunications law
Programs are headed by Matthew Schaefer, a former director of the International Economic Affairs Office of the National Security Council within the White House. Courses include remote students participating alongside on-campus students.
University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth
College Choice Score: 73.40
Average Net Price: $15,489
The University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth has an exceptional hybrid pathway towards a J.D. degree. This program utilizes online instruction for key electives and core requirements to lift academic and time burden associated with law school. Like most law schools, UM-Dartmouth requires students to follow the traditional curriculum for the Juris Doctor.
J.D. is an on-campus program, however, due online access to foundational courses, the school is providing a list of online courses that supplement on-campus instruction. By the time students graduate, they will be ready to sit for the bar in the state of Massachusetts. Students complete:
- Research papers
- Case studies
- Moot court practices
- Pro-bono work
A unique structure lends convenience to difficult coursework. Students will have the opportunity to take 15 credit hours online, or the equivalent of five courses.
Loyola University Chicago
College Choice Score: 73.18
Average Net Price: $32,108
Loyola University Chicago School of Law provides students with a way to attend law school online. The school’s J.D. program gives students the opportunity to attend an Online Summer Session which offers online courses for all J.D.-seeking professionals. This school is regionally accredited and backed by the American Bar Association.
Online Summer Session grants J.D. required course credit is limited to just 15 hours. Students not taking courses at Loyola who would like to attend this program must first obtain written permission from their law school. These are taught synchronously, allowing students to interact in real-time with their classmates and professors. The program includes:
- Up to 15 hours of J.D. course work
- Advising service
- Tech support
- A cohesive learning environment
The courses offered through the Online Summer Session change every year. Coursework fulfills requirements for a full J.D. degree.
University of Arkansas
College Choice Score: 73.07
Average Net Price: $14,693
The University of Arkansas has an agricultural and food law degree online perfect for students interested in the field. It is the first graduate legal degree to focus on this critical area of study and comes with part-time and full-time options. This school is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
The LL.M. in Agricultural and Food Law has strict admission standards and is considered a highly selective program. Students can choose how they take courses, with choices including hybrid, synchronous, and asynchronous. Entering students require:
- Minimum LL.B. or J.D.
- Bar admission
UArk offers students a variety of ways to participate in the program. This includes the option to enroll as a part-time, full-time student, and further specialization within specific fields.
College Choice Score: 72.87
Average Net Price: $30,459
Hofstra’s Maurice A. Deane School of Law is one of the fastest-growing online law schools in the country. The school is a pioneer of clinical education within a law school curriculum, which is now also available online. This program is regionally accredited and backed by the American Bar Association.
The Master of Laws in Health Law and Policy can be completed in about a year and a half online. It was designed to help professionals in the health care field become expert legal counsel. Students qualify to sit for the bar in New York after completion. Students have access to:
- Complete tech support
- Access to the law school’s online library
- Advising services
This program has no on-campus requirement and doesn’t require LSAT, GMAT, or GRE scores for admission. It consists of nine courses, all taught asynchronously.
Saint Leo University
College Choice Score: 71.93
Average Net Price: $21,377
Saint Leo University Online offers a graduate law degree completely online. The program focuses on the U.S. criminal justice system, the legal system, and the relationship between them. This school is regionally accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
The Master of Science in Criminal Justice with a concentration in Legal Studies is not intended to be a formal law degree for practicing lawyers. It is not accredited by the Bar Association and will not prepare students to sit for the bar exam in any state. This degree is for:
- Criminal justice professionals
- Police officers
- Other first responders
Saint Leo remains committed to helping military members and professionals in the criminal justice system learn more about the legal system. It provides a foundation for students interested in becoming licensed attorneys.
Ohio University-Main Campus
College Choice Score: 71.78
Average Net Price: $20,560
Ohio State University is home to the Moritz School of Law, one of the most interesting additions to this ranking. While not strictly an online law program, it is nonetheless one of the best schools for hardworking students who are interesting in a dual degree. There are some residency requirements for the school making it a perfect fit for students already residing in the Columbus area.
This online program gives students the option to pair the J.D. with another graduate degree, such as an M.D. or an M.P.H. Students can finish both degrees in the time it takes to earn one. Features available to students include:
- Dual degree availability
- Online courses change each term
- Asynchronous coursework
The J.D. degree at Ohio State University is available in hybrid format when a student is pursuing dual degrees. The average time of completion depends on the second degree, although most dual degrees can be finished within five years.
Seton Hall University
College Choice Score: 71.76
Average Net Price: $27,404
Seton Hall Law School offers working professionals the chance to earn a non-J.D. graduate degree, an M.S.J., or an LL.M. degree. These are perfect for health professionals who are interested in learning more about how the law affects the health care profession.
The curricula for online programs are supported by the school’s Health Law Program, which is currently ranked among the top ten by U.S. News and World Report. Graduate degrees ensure students advance in their careers without interfering with their day-to-day lives. Programs include:
- J.D. graduate degree
- M.S.J. degree
- LL.M. degree
The school offers over a dozen online certificates and degrees in the realm of law. Admission does not require MCAT, LSAT, GMAT, or GRE scores. Courses are taught in asynchronous format and are supported by independent studies, faculty advising, and full technical support.
Arizona State University-Downtown Phoenix
College Choice Score: 71.63
Average Net Price: $13,175
Arizona State University offers students the chance to get an online Master of Legal Studies from an accredited online law school. The program, which is housed in the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, is a flexible program that allows students the ability to study while continuing to work part-time.
The M.L.S. at ASU is a graduate program that is best suited for professionals who would like to gain a foundation in law to advance their careers. This program is for non-lawyers and will not assist students in fulfilling ABA requirements. Graduates specialize in one of five areas:
- HR and Employment Law
- Intellectual Property Law
- Sports Law and Business
- Sustainability Law
- Criminal Law
Asynchronous courses and independent study projects that make up the entirety of the program. While it is not the perfect fit for students looking to become licensed attorneys, it will help non-lawyers understand how the law affects their profession.
College Choice Score: 69.73
Average Net Price: $34,781
Champlain College offers an online Master of Science in Law program to lawyers and non-lawyers alike. The degree, which comes with two specializations, teaches how the law affects different systems within the United States.
The MSL program at Champlain was the first of its kind in the nation and the first to become available online. Studies help working adults understand how the law affects their field. There are two specialization tracks:
- Human Service Law and Systems
- Employment and Labor Law
Students have access to online research materials, the library, advising, and support services. The school ensures remote learners feel a part of the Champlain College family.
California University of Pennsylvania
College Choice Score: 69.02
Average Net Price: $17,233
The California University of Pennsylvania offers a variety of online legal degrees for non-lawyers. The Master of Science in Legal Studies: Law and Public Policy Concentration is the most popular and sets the groundwork for students to begin at the graduate level.
The M.S. in Legal Studies with a concentration in Law and Public Policy is a fantastic way for working professionals to make the leap into law. The program is not accredited by the ABA and will not qualify students to sit for the bar exam. Focuses include:
- Legal reasoning
- U.S. legal system
Work is available completely online with no on-campus residency requirements. Students attend asynchronous lectures and assignments while remaining engaged with classmates through discussion forums and online study groups.
Nova Southeastern University
College Choice Score: 67.42
Average Net Price: $670 per credit
Nova Southeastern University is the perfect place to earn a law school online for those without previous experience. The program at NSU will facilitate deep learning and a comprehensive working knowledge of the framework and function of the American legal system. Students require little more than an undergraduate degree from another regionally accredited university to attend. The school offers a Master of Science in Law in a variety of subjects including health, employment, and education.
You will learn to view legal issues as lawyers do, how to identify legal issues in your profession and how to locate and apply applicable law in your workplace setting. Master of Science in Law degrees offered by Nova Southeastern focus on four important and growing fields:
- Law and Policy
Courses at Nova Southeastern are taught asynchronously. Your degree can be tailored to your individual interests and provide pathway to professional success. A live and interactive factor to each course ensures students are engaging with fellow classmates and instructors. The NSU online program offers the same rigor as traditional degrees.
College Choice Score: 62.09
Average Net Price: $17,986
Regent University School of Law is an accredited law school that offers an LL.M. in American Legal Studies. This degree can help students fulfill the requirements needed to become eligible to sit for the bar in the state of Virginia. The university is regionally accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
Regent’s online program is best suited for students who are looking to practice advanced law with a Christian worldview. The university’s LL.M. program has a variety of specializations including:
- Family law
- Public law
- Constitutional law
Students are taught by world-renown professors and licensed professors from Ivy League schools. The learning management platform allows students to interact with classmates and professors on a regular basis.
College Choice Score: 60.94
Average Net Price: $7,210
Concord Law School offers one of the best online law degree programs in the country. The J.D. program enables student’s eligibility for the California bar exam. This school is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is accepted by Competency-based Education.
This J.D. program is perfect for students who have just completed their undergraduate degree and are ready to move into earning a law degree. Classes are all online and students never should worry about attending lectures. The degree includes:
- Part-time courses over four-years
- Group work
- Characteristics of a traditional law program
- First-Year Law Students’ Examination
This program is for ambitious students who are ready to become licensed attorneys. Students will also find that Concord emulates many of the Moot Court online experiences and other such law school activities.
Grand Canyon University
College Choice Score: 58.23
Average Net Price: $19,775
Grand Canyon University offers an online law degree specifically for working professionals in criminal justice and law enforcement fields. While it is not a J.D., this degree will serve as a foundation for students who will later enter law school.
The Master of Science in Criminal Justice with an emphasis in Legal Studies is a strong degree that focuses on preparing students for the preservation of the legal system. Courses are taught in an eight-week format that takes about a year to complete through part-time study. Subjects include:
- Constitutional Rights
- Legal Research
This is a strong program for students who do not have a background in law and would like to pursue legal studies or enter law school. Requirements include a portfolio, research paper, and team projects.
University of Hawaii-West Oahu
College Choice Score: 56.92
Average Net Price: $7,642
The University of Hawaii at West Oahu offers students a unique opportunity in obtaining a law degree through distance education. Students in the J.D. and M.B.A. joint degree program will graduate with two degrees. This university is regionally accredited by the Senior College and University Commission.
The university only offers this online dual degree to residents of Hawaii as there are residency requirements. These include some J.D. courses that can only be taken on campus or at a satellite campus on the island.
- On-site final examinations
- Team projects
- MBA courses during the summer and winter terms
This dual degree program can be completed in four years by enrolling in hybrid courses. Most J.D. students elect to finish their law degree requirements first and pursue remaining credit.