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15 Best Law Schools in Hawaii | Cost, Requirements, How to Apply

Hawaii is more than just a tourist destination where people go to swim and enjoy the beach. It is a calm setting for a law degree. There is only one law school in this small state that is accredited by the American Bar Association.


However, there are additional law schools in Hawaii that provide LL.B. programs and other legal courses for aspiring attorneys and legal professionals.

They are not ABA-approved, which is the caveat. Even so, you can obtain legal education and essential training in a variety of legal, judicial, and law enforcement fields.

To learn more about the best law schools in Hawaii 2023 and those nearby, keep reading this article.

Are there law schools in Hawaii?

Yes, Hawaii has three law schools that offer LL.B. degrees. For prospective lawyers and legal professionals, there are programs and other legal training available.

  • The University of Hawaii at Manoa Law School
  • Chaminade University of Honolulu
  • The University of Hawaii at Ilo

Other law schools close to Hawaii include

  • University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Law-$54,052
  • California Western School of Law-$54,310 
  • Chapman University School of Law-$54,718 
  • Golden Gate University School of Law-$51,500 
  • University of La Verne College of Law-$32,828 
  • Loyola Law School, Loyola Marymount University-$59,340 
  • University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law
  • Pepperdine University School of Law- $57,560
  • University of San Diego—School of Law- $57,192

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What are law schools in Hawaii ranked for in 2023?

 Law schools in Hawaii are among those that are evaluated by USNews ranking based on two categories of data:

  • expert assessments of the quality of their programs. 
  • statistical measures of the caliber of their professors’ research and students.

Deans, program directors, and senior faculty were requested to rate the academic caliber of programs in their field on a scale of 1 (marginal) to 5 in order to compile the peer assessment data (outstanding).

Prospective students can utilize the data on the U.S. News website to compare specific characteristics, such as student-faculty ratio and job placement performance after graduation, as they examine course offerings and evaluate schools’ intangible qualities. The rankings are only a supplement, not a replacement, for critical consideration and independent research.

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What are the requirements for law schools in Hawaii 2023?

Here is a step by step procedure on how to apply to a law school in Hawaii

Step 1

Before signing up for the LSAT, you must first create an account with the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC) in order to begin the application process for law school.

If possible, register even sooner than the earliest deadline for applications to your schools, which is usually three months. You must finish the application process for LSAC and submit your transcripts, LSAT results, and a personal statement.

Accounts with LSAC are active for five years.

Step 2

All of the requirements, in addition to the CAS report, are listed on the websites of individual law schools as well as the LSAC. Each law school also has its own standards that are distinct from one another. By following the procedures on their websites, you can submit an application to a specific school by mail or online.

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At any time during the procedure, you can get in touch with LSAC by phone or email if you have any queries.

Step 3

Almost all law schools recognized by the ABA demand that applicants sign up for LSAC’s Credential Assembly Service (CAS).

CAS combines the following to produce your law school report:

  • An academic profile
  • LSAT score(s)
  • writing sample(s)
  • transcripts (from all undergraduate, graduate, and law/professional schools)
  • letters of recommendation/evaluations, and other pertinent data, like prior matriculation, should all be included.

Step 4

Some schools accept letters directly, while others prefer or demand that you submit them through LSAC’s Letters of Recommendation and Evaluation Services. The LSAC website contains letter submission guidelines.

Read Also: 15 Best Law Schools in Oklahoma | Cost, Requirements, How to Apply

How Much is the Tuition at Law Schools in Hawaii 2023?

  • The University of Hawaii at Manoa Law School- $47,360
  • Chaminade University of Honolulu- $45,683
  • The University of Hawaii at Ilo- $29,016

Other law schools in Hawaii 

  • University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Law-$54,052
  • California Western School of Law-$54,310 
  • Chapman University School of Law-$54,718 
  • Golden Gate University School of Law-$51,500 
  • University of La Verne College of Law-$32,828 
  • Loyola Law School, Loyola Marymount University-$59,340 
  • University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law
  • Pepperdine University School of Law- $57,560
  • University of San Diego—School of Law- $57,192

How long is law school in Hawaii?

A post-baccalaureate curriculum extends up to three years. Upon graduation, students earn a Juris Doctor (JD) degree, sometimes referred to as the first professional degree in law.

A JD degree prepares students for professions in law and related fields as well as the bar exam and entrance to the bar.

For international students, law schools in Hawaii also offer a master’s in law (LL.M.) and a doctor of juridical science degree (SJD).

15 Best Law Schools in Hawaii 2023

1. The University of Hawaii at Manoa Law School

The sole ABA-accredited law school in Hawaii is the William S. Richardson School of Law at the University of Hawaii. This multicultural college in Honolulu, which bears the name of a former Supreme Court justice, trains students for careers in law and other related fields.

This college provides both highly skilled training and the best classroom instruction. You can apply to any of their advanced graduate programs, including the Juris Doctor (full-time or part-time), LL.M., or SJD.

William S. Richardson Law School is ranked No. 94 in the nation by US News & World Report. The admission rate is 38.2%. The law school at U.H. offers reasonably priced degrees and draws some of the most esteemed legal minds from around the world. This is the appropriate college for you if you want to study Pacific-Asian law or specialize in environmental law.

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2. Chaminade University of Honolulu

This law school offers excellent academic programs and a supportive learning atmosphere, regardless of whether you are enrolling for the first time or changing schools. You’ll get to talk with other students who share your enthusiasm for justice and the law. You will also discover the tools and assistance you require to make the move to becoming a lawyer.

Law enforcement administrators are educated at this university’s law school. This college hosts a criminal justice expo each year.

The expo offers students the chance to ask questions of representatives from numerous organizations, including the Hawaii State judiciary, police departments, the bureau of prisons, and others. It is free and available to everyone. It is appropriate for students interested in criminology, law enforcement, criminal justice, or public safety occupations.

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3. The University of Hawaii at Ilo

Demanding professors will push you hard on a variety of topics, including teamwork, public service, oral communication, problem-solving, and the advancement of justice. Additionally, you’ll gain some basic knowledge about the law of the land.

With its pre-law certificate, this university will prepare you if you desire to pursue an LL.B or any other degree in the legal field.

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It’s a reputable college that assists budding attorneys in becoming familiar with the fundamentals. When you enroll in this course, you will acquire writing and research abilities that are essential for advancing your legal knowledge.

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Other law schools close to law schools in Hawaii 

San Francisco offers the best law school education and is the nearest big city to Hawaii. California law schools are listed below.

1. University of California, Berkeley, School of Law

The San Francisco Bay Area is home to the Berkeley School of Law. It ranks among the top centers for legal instruction and research in the world.

Specialized coursework in business, law, and economics; environmental law; law and technology; international and comparative legal studies; and social justice and public interest are all included in the academic curriculum. T

The legal school offers clinical programs with genuine client work and research institutes. In addition to its three-year JD curriculum, Berkeley Law School also offers postgraduate LLM and JSD degrees. The institution also provides an interdisciplinary program in jurisprudence and social policy (JSP). It is a member of AALS and has ABA approval.

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Read Also: 10 Best Law Schools in California | Cost, Requirements, How to Apply.

2. University of California, Davis School of Law (King Hall)

In 1965, the University of California established its school of law. The American Bar Association has accredited it. The Association of American Law Schools recognizes it as a member. A wide variety of graduate and professional programs are available on the campus.

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3. University of California, Hastings College of the Law

A full-time, public, coeducational law school in San Francisco is located at University of California Hastings College of the Law. In 1878, Hastings was established. Hastings University has nationally renowned academic faculty. More judges than any other law school in the state have come from Hastings.

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4. University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Law

The study atmosphere at the law school combines smart, productive legal scholars with eager, excellent pupils. Top legal academics are raised at UCLA Law, which has established innovative academic programs to uphold its prestigious reputation.

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5. California Western School of Law

The independent law school in San Diego is called California Western School of Law. The centers and institutes of the law school provide several chances to investigate the whole range of the law. In 1962, the ABA granted California Western its accreditation. It became a member of AALS in 1967.

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6. Chapman University School of Law

In 1995, the law school was founded. The ABA gave it its full approval in 2002. In January 2006, the institution attained AALS certification. The legal school offers joint JD/MBA and joint JD/MFA degrees in film production, as well as LLM degrees in taxes and prosecutorial science. It also has specialty areas in entertainment law, international law, taxation, environmental, advocacy, and dispute resolution. Family violence, immigration law, elder law, constitutional law, and appellate practice are among the fields with practical prospects.

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7. Golden Gate University School of Law

In 1901, the Golden Gate University School of Law was established. The law school has received full ABA accreditation. It is an AALS member in good standing.

The cornerstone of contemporary legal theory is laid forth in the course work at Golden Gate University School of Law. It cultivates the practical abilities required to succeed as a lawyer.

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8. University of La Verne College of Law. 

The student to teacher ratios are excellent at the University of La Verne College of Law. Professors of law at La Verne take a genuine personal interest in their students’ professional success.

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9.Loyola Law School, Loyola Marymount University

In 1920, Loyola Law School was established. It is best known for generating many of the most interesting and significant lawyers in the country. Loyola instills a strong commitment to ethical behavior and civic service. A branch of Loyola Marymount University is the Law School (LMU). There are around 140 full-time and adjunct faculty members and 1,320 full-time day and part-time evening students.

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10. University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law

The institution belongs to the AALS. It has ABA accreditation. It provides flexibility to obtain a JD degree in three, four, or five years of study by offering day- and evening-division programs. Over a thousand students are studying for a JD, LLM, or JSD. The increasing number of pupils from a diverse spectrum of racial and ethnic backgrounds serves as a constant reminder of gender and racial diversity.

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11. Pepperdine University School of Law

As a Christian institution, Pepperdine is dedicated to upholding the highest standards of academic performance and Christian principles. Students are prepared for lives of purpose, service, and leadership in law school.

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12. University of San Diego—School of Law

With an outstanding faculty, the University of San Diego School of Law is a renowned location for legal study. In 1954, the law school was established. It is a component of the private, independent, Roman Catholic University of San Diego.

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How to apply to law schools in Hawaii 2023?

Here is a step by step procedure 

1. Completed Application Form 

 This should be done on the school website. 

2. Personal Statement 

Write about your background and credentials, your motivations for pursuing an LLM degree, and the academic path you want to take on different sheets of paper. Your personal statement must have been written by you alone and cannot be more than 800 words (about two typed pages).

3. Two Letters of Recommendation 

Two letters of recommendation are required. Schools prefer one of the letters to come from your current or past legal professor. The original recommendation letter must be accompanied by an English translation if it was not written in English.

(Detailed instructions are provided on the Letters of Recommendation form).

4. Transcripts and Degree Verification 

Request official transcripts to be delivered immediately to the School of Law’s LLM Program from all universities (graduate and undergraduate) where you have studied. A verified English translation must be included with each transcript if it is not in English.

5. English Proficiency Test

Unless you have a bachelor’s or graduate degree from a university in the United States, Canada (excluding Quebec), the United Kingdom, Australia, or New Zealand, your application must include a Duolingo Test, a Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), or an International English Language Testing System (IELTS) examination score report.

Candidates who have been enrolled full-time in an English-speaking university for one year prior to applying may qualify for an exemption from the need for English proficiency. The LLM Admissions Committee has the right to offer exemption at its discretion.

6. Application Fee

The university must receive payment of a specific application fee. A U.S. bank or an overseas money order must issue the payment. The check needs to have your name on it so that it can be correctly credited to your application. This charge is not waived or refunded by schools. By clicking this link, you can pay with a credit card.

7. CV, or curriculum vitae (Optional)

The application form can be printed out and mailed to the law school’s website together with the other required documents, or it can be submitted as an email attachment.


In conclusion, Hawaii’s law schools provide services to help students advance their careers, such as creating cover letters and resumes, training on specific skills, and chances to network with other members of the state’s legal community.

Frequently Asked Questions 

Is admission to Hawaii’s law school difficult?

In terms of student selection, UH Law is ranked 109th, with a 49.7% acceptance rate of applicants. UH Law had the highest median undergraduate GPA (3.32) of all the applicants admitted who enrolled as full-time students, placing it at position #130.

Is law school challenging?

To sum up, law school is challenging. Stress, pressure, and time commitment are more demanding than at ordinary colleges or universities. However, every year, roughly 40,000 students graduate from law schools, making it a feasible goal.

How long should a law student study each day?

You should probably schedule at least two hours of study time for every hour of class. For instance, you will study Torts, Contracts, and Criminal Law in your first year. Each session meets for three and a half hours each week. This indicates that you should allocate roughly 7 hours per week, or a total of 21 hours, to studying and preparing for each class.

Law schools offer free time, right?

The most dedicated students who stick to their regular study plans will have the some free time. If one approached law school as a full-time career, one might put in forty hours a week of study and attendance.
I know some successful law students who spent more time than this, as well as many who spent less time than this.

Can an average student study law?

LLB programs can last three or five years. An average student can readily see LLB as a suitable option because, with hard effort and devotion, he or she will be able to study it easily.
For those who disregard it and don’t give it the necessary attention, the course will prove to be difficult.



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