Lawyers Learning More: The Potential Benefits of Pursuing an LLM


On a latest cool afternoon on Coronado, John L. Pittman III was proudly sporting his Pepperdine Law sweatshirt when he struck up a conversation with a stranger approximately his felony schooling.

Pittman informed the woman that he’s pursuing an internet Master of Laws in Dispute Resolution at Pepperdine’s Caruso School of Law and holds a JD and a Master of Laws in Taxation from Thomas Jefferson School of Law.

While the woman changed into inspired along with his credentials, she nevertheless wanted to recognize, “Is all that education in reality really worth it?”

Pittman, who in regulation college was on the Alternative Dispute Resolution opposition crew and had the possibility to help to conduct mediations at the San Diego Small Claims Court, hopes the Master of Law diploma from Pepperdine will result in an possibility on a courtroom-appointed mediation panel.

He says he asked himself, “What certification do I need to be a mediator, without being a legal professional for fifteen years?”

Pittman says the primary mediation education application inside the u . S . Is at Pepperdine, in order that’s where he wanted to be.

“The individuals who commenced JAMS, the sector’s largest personal ADR company,” Pittman says, “are my teachers at Pepperdine.”

Attorneys and JD holders can earn a Master of Laws diploma, usually known as an LLM, as a graduate qualification inside the area of law. If a legal professional earned a regulation degree out of doors the U.S., the LLM can help them advantage global qualifications.

While Pepperdine is at the map for its Dispute Resolution software, the University of San Diego School of Law is well known for its LLM in Taxation, ranking #eight on U.S. News & World Report’s Tax Rankings for 2023.

Touted as intensive take a look at to assist students develop a deep knowledge of the guidelines forming the premise of the tax legal guidelines and Internal Revenue Service pronouncements, Assistant Director of Graduate and International Programs Robynn L. Allveri, Esq. Explains USD’s LLM in Taxation may be a good deal.

“USD has the choice wherein if students take tax guides in our JD program they could deliver ahead up to 12 of those credits into the LLM in Taxation program,” she says, “And then potentially entire the LLM degree in only one semester.”

USD additionally gives the convey-over credit score option for its students pursuing a General LLM with a awareness in Intellectual Property.

Allveri says apart from global lawyers who pursue an LLM as a method to take the California bar exam, students generally pursue an LLM as a part of a profession shift or to take a deeper dive into a exercise region they may be dedicated to.

Associate General Counsel of Viasat, Inc. Kristopher Harmon, is in his third semester of USD’s Business and Corporate Law LLM application as a element-time scholar taking one elegance a semester to date. He has focused his research on business because an undergrad at San Diego State University and says his participation in the LLM software is already proving relevant to his activity.

“I address Viasat’s patent lawyers quite often and I’m currently taking a class in patent regulation. The class has taught me a little bit greater of what to look out for and now I can better apprehend what our patent legal professionals are speaking approximately,” he says. “Overall, it simply makes me a more valuable lawyer for Viasat.”

Harmon says the communications enterprise changed into supportive of him when he determined to visit law college component time in 2010, graduating from Thomas Jefferson School of Law in 2015 with the assist of Viasat’s lessons repayment application, and he says they had been similarly supportive of his hobbies at USD.

And even as he admits he changed into a bit worried approximately being an “antique man” on campus, he quickly got over that. “I’m on this instructional surroundings that simply feels genuinely appropriate.”

Allveri says LLM college students like Harmon who’ve already surpassed the bar exam have a tendency to be happier law students. She says she additionally regularly receives comments from USD professors telling her that they love having working towards attorneys and foreign students in the study room because it makes for a richer and greater various academic experience.

Harmon says he likes this system’s structure because it adds greater value to him than just doing random minimum continuing felony training classes here and there. So a ways in his diploma, Harmon has taken one class each semester and, according to the Rules of the State Bar of California, considering the fact that he’s an authorized attorney he can claim MCLE credit score for attending his LLM instructions.*

Unlike MCLE lessons, Allveri says an LLM offers all of the traditional fringe advantages of a JD diploma together with profession offerings, library get admission to, and alumni offerings. “From that factor forward, it doesn’t count if this is their first and simplest degree at USD or no longer, or what their underlying faculty was or where it turned into,’ Allveri says, “They’re part of the USD own family and alumni network… If people maybe have long gone to a smaller or lesser famous law school and then they get an LLM from an area like USD on top of that, I suppose that may assist open doorways, increase a resumé, or maybe the confidence of the student feeling like, yeah, I can really compete for any job out there.”


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