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Cost of Attendance At These Law Schools Surpass $100K

In a historic move, Columbia, Stanford, and Chicago law will all be raising their cost of attendance to exceed $100,000 in the 2019-20 academic year, Inside Higher Ed reports.

NATION’S FIRST LAW SCHOOLS TO PASS SIX FIGURES

At Columbia, the cost of attendance, which includes tuition, fees, and living expenses, increased from $87,850 to $101,345 this year.

Stanford Law’s cost of attendance increased by 4.5% to $101,016 from 2018-19’s cost of $96,429.

Chicago Law will be charging first-year students $100,080 and second- and third-year students $98,505.

UNSURPRISING INCREASE

For the most part, experts say, the increase is an obvious trend that has occurred year after year.

At Stanford Law, the cost of attendance also includes living expenses and health insurance. The high cost of living in the Bay Area accounted for more than one-third of Stanford’s total cost of attendance.

“Tuition covers roughly one-third of the actual cost of educating law students,” according to a statement by Stanford Law. “Stanford Law School currently has the lowest tuition rates among our peers.”

PRICE WON’T DETOUR APPLICANTS

Part of the reason why these law schools can increase their cost of attendance is that they know applicants will still apply despite the high price.

Columbia Law, Stanford Law, and Chicago Law are among some of the most prestigious law schools in the nation. And applicants have shown, time after time, that they’re willing to pay for the degree.

“They could increase demand and that wouldn’t impact the number of people who apply or qualify [to attend],” Chris Chapman, president and CEO of AccessLex, a nonprofit that works to improve legal education, tells Inside Higher Ed. “These schools, they’re perceived as a premium item, a luxury good. You almost have a reverse psychology that if it’s not that expensive, it’s not that good. No one wants to be seen as the cheap version of these schools.”

Sources: Inside Higher Ed, Columbia Law, Stanford Law, Chicago Law