|University of Maryland|
Francis King Carey School of Law
|Parent school||University of Maryland, Baltimore|
|Dean||Donald B. Tobin|
|Location||Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.|
|Enrollment||705 (part- and full-time, JD, LLM, & MSL)|
|Faculty||49 full-time; 119 adjunct|
|USNWR ranking||47th (2021)|
|Bar pass rate||79.9% (2018)|
|ABA profile||LSAC Official Guide 2018|
The University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law (formerly University of Maryland School of Law; sometimes shortened to Maryland Law or Maryland Carey Law) is the law school of the University of Maryland, Baltimore and is located in Baltimore City, Maryland, U.S. Its location places Maryland Law in the Baltimore-Washington legal and business community.
In 2003, the law school moved into a new facility in downtown Baltimore near the Inner Harbor and Oriole Park at Camden Yards. In 2011, the law school received a US$30 million donation from the W.P. Carey Foundation, the largest gift in the school's history. In response, the law school changed its name to the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law.
The law school was ranked 36th by the U.S. News & World Report in 2008 and 47th as of the 2021 edition. The 2021 edition also gave Maryland Law top standing in part-time programs (#5), health care law (#7), environmental law (#10), dispute resolution (#13), and clinical training (#6).
Founded in 1816 as the Maryland Law Institute, with regular instruction beginning in 1824, it is the second-oldest law school in the United States, behind only William & Mary Law School. After the law school denied admission to black applicant Donald Gaines Murray on account of his race, in 1936 the Maryland Court of Appeals ruled that the law school must admit him.
There are approximately 705 students enrolled at Maryland Law in the Juris Doctor (J.D.), Master of Laws (LL.M.), and Master of Science in Law (M.S.L.) programs combined. The racial makeup of students in the J.D. program is approximately , with about 35% identifying as a minority race (and the remainder are unknown or did not specify). Around 72% of J.D. students are under 25 years old. There are more than 40 student organizations, four specialized legal centers, and five law journals.
According to Maryland Law's official data reported to the American Bar Association, 91.1% of 2016 graduates were employed in some capacity nine months after graduation. For those who chose private practice, the median starting salary was $132,500. According to Maryland Law's Law School Transparency (LST) report, nine months after graduation, 57.6% of 2015 graduates had obtained full-time, long-term legal jobs and 19.6% were underemployed, meaning they were either unemployed, pursuing additional degrees, or working in nonprofessional, short-term, or part-time jobs.
For the 2019-2020 academic year, tuition and fees for full-time J.D. students are $32,808 for Maryland residents and $48,426 for out-of-state students. For part-time J.D. students, tuition and fees are $21,538 for Maryland residents and $31,704 for out-of-state students. The estimated total cost of attendance for J.D. students, which includes tuition and fees, living expenses, transportation expenses, book expenses, and health insurance, is $61,745 for full-time students who are Maryland residents, $79,277 for full-time out-of-state students, $45,123 for part-time students who are Maryland residents, and $56,972 for part-time out-of-state students.
During the 2017-18 academic year, 80% of students received a scholarship or grant from Maryland Law, including 83% of full-time students and 68% of part-time students.
The core curriculum at Maryland Law for J.D. students includes courses in civil procedure, constitutional law, torts, property, contracts, and criminal law, as well as a two-semester sequence of courses focusing on legal skills of analysis, research, writing, and oral argument. After completing these initial courses, students are required to complete additional coursework in constitutional law, ethics, and legal research, and satisfy experiential and writing requirements. This core curriculum forms the basis for more specialized study through more than 150 elective courses, seminars, independent studies, simulations, clinics, and externships.
The LL.M. degree program is designed for students who have earned a prior law degree, either a J.D. degree from a law school in the United States or a law degree from a school in another country. Students must complete coursework in a specialty field and may choose to write a thesis. LL.M. students who did not earn a prior law degree in an American law school must take a course on introductory American law, but otherwise, no specific courses are required for LL.M. students.
Maryland Law is home to several specialty programs that enable students to explore areas of interest through experiential learning and a specialized curriculum. The main specialty areas include:
Students can focus in other areas as well, such as criminal law, dispute resolution, family law/child advocacy, general practice, jurisprudence/legal history, labor/employment law, administrative law, property/real estate/decedent's estates law, public interest law/community development, and tax law.
Through the Cardin Requirement, named after Maryland Law alumnus U.S. Senator Benjamin Cardin, each full-time day student in the J.D. program must gain hands-on legal experience by representing actual clients who would otherwise lack access to justice. Most students fulfill the Cardin Requirement through the Clinical Law Program, which provides free legal services to Maryland's poorest citizens each year.
More than 25 clinics focus on a broad range of practice areas, including civil and criminal litigation, advice and counseling, and transactional work. Civil practice areas include environmental law, health, housing and community development, juvenile law and children, AIDS, and immigration. Criminal student attorneys often represent defendants in misdemeanor cases in Maryland's district courts, as well as work in the School of Law's community justice efforts. In addition to in-house clinical work, students may gain experience in public and private nonprofit externships in the Baltimore-Washington region.
In addition to formal specialty programs, the law school sponsors a variety of academic and public service initiatives. These initiatives enhance the educational and scholarly mission of the law school and also serve the community.
The law school offers several dual-degree options:
Maryland Law, including the Thurgood Marshall Law Library, occupies a complex that supports the school's programs integrating classroom and experiential learning. The facility opened in 2002 and contains three courtrooms, including the Ceremonial Moot Courtroom, where state and federal trial and appellate courts regularly sit in session to hear cases.
The Thurgood Marshall Law Library houses a collection of more than 495,000 volumes and equivalents accessible through the online catalog. A staff of 23, including 11 librarians, provides customized reference and consulting services to faculty and students. In addition to LexisNexis, Westlaw and Bloomberg Law, the library offers a legal and non-legal Web-based electronic databases.
The library is named after Justice Thurgood Marshall. Despite growing up in Baltimore, he was unable to attend Maryland Law because, in the 1930s, the school denied all African Americans admission. Marshall attended Howard University School of Law.