Best Law Schools in Hawaii 2024 | All You Need to Know

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Discover all you need to know about the best law schools in Hawaii in 2023. Explore the top-rated institutions offering comprehensive legal education and training at the best law schools in Hawaii. Prepare for a successful legal career in the beautiful island paradise.

Fun fact: Former President Barack Obama hailed from Honolulu, Hawaii.

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The need for a law school with a serene, conducive environment can only be achieved when you sign up at the right spot. Only then can you be assured of becoming a competent lawyer while surfing through the challenges and fun attached to law school.

Need the right spot? – Hawaii’s got you covered!

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The official 50th state of the U.S. is not just a paradise for tourists and a home for many but also a center for academic excellence. 

Also, the state is home to several institutions ranging from elementary to high schools, up to what you can imagine. 

This makes it a pleasant spot to pursue a law career. Don’t forget that becoming a lawyer requires that you study and undergo due training in an accredited law school.

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Knowing the best law schools in Hawaii isn’t enough. You must be prepared to face the nooks and crannies of law as a course and lifestyle. 

There are excellent law schools in Hawaii where students can be groomed to perfection or, realistically, near perfection.

In this article, we’ll be shedding more light on the best law schools in Hawaii and what to expect from them. 

Also, we’ll be answering some questions about the best law schools in Hawaii.

Are there Law Schools in Hawaii?

Considering the state’s outstanding academic records, especially among the top 30, you can’t expect the absence of law schools. 

As expected, they aren’t similar to the core, but their influence on students’ legal education is top-notch. The schools have multiracial student communities, grooming students in different aspects of the law.

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How Many Law Schools are in Hawaii?

Hawaii boasts of just one law school accredited by the American Bar Association (ABA) – not too bad for the most recent state in the U.S.

There are several other institutions where students can learn the practice or get directly under practicing attorneys. However, the con is that they aren’t ABA-accredited. 

As a result, we’ll be providing you with information about the only ABA-accredited law school in Hawaii – the University of Hawaii Manoa Law School – and others for your reading pleasure.

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Is it Hard to Get into Hawaii Law School?

Considering its not-too-low acceptance rate of 40%, it isn’t quite hard to get into the school. Nevertheless, the school is still competitive.

To have a smooth ride during admission, ensure that you:

  • You are among the top 1% in your class.
  • LSAT score is sufficiently high.
  • GPA is high.
  • resumé is convincing.
  • the personal statement is perfect.

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Is the Hawaii Bar Exam Hard?

While there’s a lot attached to states’ bar exams, we can’t say if the Hawaii Bar Exam is challenging. However, you should note that Hawaii has fewer test takers compared to other states. As such, there aren’t many bar exam takers.

Stats have shown that about 50% of the Hawaii bar exam takers aren’t first-time takers. What does this tell you?

Don’t be scared, and don’t use this to write yourself down. Instead, you should be well-prepared for your first year in law school. Interestingly, research has shown that the hardest and easiest bar exams are taken in California and South Dakota, respectively.

Another state with great law schools is California. Check Out the Best Law Schools in California

How Long is Hawaii Law School?

It takes three years to complete a JD program at the University of Hawaii Law School. Meanwhile, you can complete your law program at the school in less time if you’ve taken part-time classes before. 

This way, you’ll save some time for other endeavors. Ensure you’re committed to the program, as it can be challenging. 

Most firms require lawyers certified by ABA-accredited institutions, so maximize your time at Hawaii Law School.

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Does the University of Hawaii Have a Good Law School?

William S. Richardson School of Law is ranked among the top 100 best law schools in the United States. Given the type of courses offered, we can say that the University of Hawaii has a good law school. 

Although the school’s bar pass rate is relatively low, they expose students to courtroom-like situations, which give them working knowledge about the legal field.

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What are the Best Law Schools in Hawaii?

#1. The University of Hawaii Manoa Law School

We have the William S. Richardson School of Law at the University of Hawaii. Since it began operations as a center for legal studies, it has produced competent lawyers who’re fit for government and private appointments.

Although it’s the only accredited law school in Hawaii, you should note that the school’s educational standard is high. This makes it quite competitive. The school accepts applicants with an average GPA and LSAT score of 3.30 and 155, respectively. You should have a lot of tricks up your sleeves if you’re pursuing a legal career at this school.

Aside from the diverse student community and scholarships, students enjoy the state’s tropical feel, coupled with the services of their ever-performing tutors. Some of the available law courses at the school include:

  • Environmental law
  • Native Hawaiian law
  • Maritime law
  • Pacific-Asian law, etc.

The deadline for application to the school usually falls on the 1st of April, so the earlier your preparation, the better. 

  • Location: Honolulu, HI
  • Application Fee: $75
  • Acceptance Rate: 40%
  • Bar Pass Rate: 66%
  • Tuition & Fees: $23,200 for in-state residents and $46,580 for out-of-state residents.

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Other Law Schools in Hawaii

Aside from the University of Hawaii Manoa Law School, there are other law schools in Hawaii where students are groomed to become full-fledged lawyers. 

They provide students with the fundamentals of law, its application, and related skills. 

The only con is that they aren’t accredited. Nevertheless, for knowledge’s sake, other law schools in Hawaii exist.

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#2. Chaminade University of Honolulu

This school is highly recommendable if you have a thing for law but are unsure of how to set out. The school guides students through becoming legal practitioners in criminal justice and public safety.

The school also hosts an annual expo open to all students. Centered on criminal justice, students meet officials from several legal institutions, throw questions, and get educated. Be sure to meet like-minded students invested in upholding law and order.

  • Location: Honolulu, HI
  • Application Fee: $50
  • Acceptance Rate: 88%
  • Tuition & Fees: $27,454

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 #3. The University of Hawaii at Hilo

Here, students pursuing careers in law or related courses can get trained in the basics. 

Through their pre-law program, would-be lawyers can develop skills such as writing, speaking, listening, critical thinking, problem-solving, and reading, all of which are essential to solidifying their skill sets.

  • Location: Hilo, HI
  • Application Fee: $50
  • Acceptance Rate: 45%
  • Tuition & Fees: $7,838 for residents and $20 798 for non-residents.

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How Many Lawyers are in Hawaii?

According to the Hawaiian State Bar Association, over 4,000 certified lawyers are currently practicing within the state under private and government appointments.

A large percentage of these lawyers work in state-recognized legal firms. This is because of benefits like connections, accessible publications, and recommendations.

How Much Does it Cost to Take the Bar Exam in Hawaii?

The bar exam in Hawaii takes place twice a year; the first in February and the other in July. In the winter phase (February), the exam is held on the last Tuesday of the month; in the summer phase (July), the exam is held on the last Wednesday of the month.

The exam costs $500, and applicants will be tested on the following aspects:

  • Constitutional Law
  • Torts
  • Evidence
  • Civil procedure
  • Criminal law
  • Family law
  • Real property, to name a few.

The exams will cover Multistate Essay Exams (MEE), logical tests, legal ethics, Multistate Performance Tests (MPT), and Multistate Bar Exams (MBE). The exam’s duration is two days. 

How to Become a Lawyer in Hawaii

If becoming a lawyer in Hawaii is your dream or goal, you’ve got to be prepared. Law school isn’t as sweet as hanging out with a handful of friends, sharing one bottle of Hennessy. 

No! Law school is practically challenging but worth it. 

After becoming a certified lawyer, you’re at liberty to work anywhere in the U.S. Here is a list of ways by which you can become a lawyer in Hawaii. 

  • Take an undergraduate pre-law course at an accredited institution. Getting a bachelor’s degree from an unaccredited institution may cut off or greatly reduce your chances of getting into an accredited law school.
  • Take a Law School Admission Test (LSAT) in Hawaii. Be sure to prepare hard, smart, and score high as law schools love the best students.
  • Attend a law school in Hawaii.
  • Prepare, take, and pass the Hawaii State Bar Examination, which is available twice a year.

Frequently Asked Questions About Law Schools in Hawaii

Is it Hard to Get into Hawaii Law School?

Considering its not-too-low acceptance rate of 40%, it isn’t quite hard to get into the school. Nevertheless, the school is still competitive.

Is the Hawaii Bar Exam Hard?

While there’s a lot attached to states’ bar exams, we can’t say if the Hawaii Bar Exam is challenging. Thus, you should be well-prepared for your first year in law school. Interestingly, research has shown that the most challenging and accessible bar exams are taken in California and South Dakota, respectively.

How Long is Hawaii Law School?

It takes three years to complete a JD program at the University of Hawaii Law School.

Does the University of Hawaii Have a Good Law School?

William S. Richardson School of Law is ranked among the top 100 best law schools in the United States. Although the school’s bar pass rate is relatively low, they expose students to courtroom-like situations, which give them working knowledge about the legal field.

Conclusion

Hawaii has a lot to offer – thrills, waves, and excellence. Should you desire to study at a budget-friendly, accredited law school with a diverse population of students, the University of Hawaii Manoa William S. Richardson School of Law is sure to satisfy you.

Also, if you seek more knowledge through pre-law programs, you can consider visiting the schools mentioned above. Good luck as you proceed with your legal career in the best law schools in Hawaii.

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