The Basics: Becoming a Lawyer in Ontario 

Before you embark on the journey into the legal profession, first understand the basic qualifications for studying and practicing law. Learn about the minimum education required, the structure of the JD program, and the key steps to be licensed to practice. Read how to get started on becoming a lawyer in Ontario.

JD Program Length, Entry Point and Delivery

The JD is the first level of professional law degree. It is an undergraduate degree akin to a bachelor of law, with which subsequent graduate law degrees may be pursued, e.g. LLM, SJD.

The JD program is designed as a three-year full-time program (in special circumstances an admitted full-time student may seek permission to complete the program as a half-time student). Courses are offered in the Fall and Winter terms only, with no summer term of courses.

In-class attendance is required, since online, distance or dedicated weekend/evening program versions are not available. Active, real time engagement is an essential component to the JD program, and all students must expect to be called upon to participate in class discussion.  

There is one entry point into the degree program each year in the latter half of August (first year entry) or early September (upper year entry).


THE logoThe University of Toronto Faculty of Law is a top 25 law school on the worldwide Times Higher Education 2024 rankings.
View the world rankings

 Holistic Admissions Process

UPDATE: Credit/No Credit (CR/NCR) grades on the 2019-2020 academic record due to COVID-19

Our JD admissions process is designed to identify exceptional students who will bring a broad and complex set of life experiences to the study of law. We strive to build a diverse and unique community of students who will forge lifelong friendships as they learn with and from each other.

The admission policies and application procedures are the same for domestic (citizens and permanent residents of Canada) and international applicants.

We use three sources of information to assess your application: 

  • your Law School Admissions Test (LSAT) results,
  • your post-secondary records of academic achievement, and
  • your personal essays.  

The review process is holistic, which means that we look at all of these factors together.  Students tell us they are surprised at how much emphasis we place on the personal essays.  We rely on the essays for information that cannot be conveyed by numbers. Multiple readers assess each file to get a full sense of the unique strengths each applicant will bring to the first year class.

Our holistic admissions approach also means that if your undergraduate record (and graduate, if applicable) and LSAT score (or scores) are below our medians, you should still consider applying. Every year we accept candidates with scores that may appear to be less competitive but whose applications considered as a whole merit admission.

There are separate admissions categories for mature students and Indigenous applicants

Find Out More About Our Program

Please explore our website, including our JD admissions policies, information about our curriculum, our faculty, our varied combined programs opportunities, our financial aid options, and student life.  While we do not offer evaluative or pre-assessment interviews, we are happy to meet with anyone who wishes to visit the law school to answer general questions about the admissions process. Contact us for additional information

TumblrCheck out our Admissions Tumblr at

It's a great place to stay current on admissions updates throughout the application cycle.

Detailed Admissions Information

UPDATE: Credit/No Credit (CR/NCR) grades on the 2019-2020 academic record due to COVID-19

High School Students: See Yourself Here

Entry into the JD program requires some years of higher education beyond secondary school. Find out more about the path from high school for becoming a lawyer.

To help prepare for law school we encourage you to read about our youth outreach activities.

See Yourself Here is an annual open house that provides high school students from diverse backgrounds with a chance to learn about the law school admission process and the legal profession. Participants attend inspirational speaker sessions, educational workshops, and a networking reception with law students, alumni and members of the legal community.