Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

Editor: Gerry W. Beyer
Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

University of Alabama School of Law Accepting Applications for LL.M in Taxation Program

UoAThe University of Alabama School of Law is currently accepting applications for its online LL.M in Taxation program.  This program allows practitioners to continue working and living where they are while pursuing further education.  

According to The University of Alabama School of Law, the law school is ranked in the top among publicly funded law schools, and the tax program is the most innovative in the country.  The following is taken from a brochure for the program and explains how this LL.M. program is distinguished from other distance learning programs:

[I]nstruction is offered through cutting-edge technology that provides live lectures over the Internet, through video, audio, and chat. Live, real-time lectures permit students to ask questions as they arise and to interact with instructors and classmates exactly as they would in a classroom. The technology even permits the instructor to share desktop applications like Powerpoint or Excel with students during class. There’s also a white board that instructors and students can use to explain concepts. Other distance learning technologies like video- streams, podcasts, discussion boards, and email are used to enhance the educational experience.

The next term begins August 2010.  Classes meet on Tuesday and Thursday from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. (C.S.T.) for six semesters. 

For more information, visit the program website, view this informational video, or send an email to llmtax@law.ua.edu.

Applications are due by May 1, 2010.


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Adding a new LL.M. in tax program is absurd at this time. There is no need for more tax LL.M.s I've read recently that laws schools are graduating around 70,000 prospective lawyers a year, but the legal market is only hiring 40,000 new lawyers. I have an LL.M. in tax from New York University, and I just don't see the need for more lawyers with this degree.

I think it's just another example of law schools taking advantage of young people who are running up huge debts to get a law degree with no assurance that they can get a good paying law job or even any job as a lawyer. I know a young man who borrowed almost $60,000 to go to his first year of law school at California Western in San Diego last year. I think it is wrong for law schools to let young people incur that kind of debt for a degree that may become almost worthless.

I also know two young people who graduated in May of 2009 from the University of Washington School of law with LL.M. degrees in tax. Neither one of them has been able to find a job as a lawyer. One works as a legal assistant in the same firm where she worked as a legal assistant before law school and tax school. Her husband cannot find work as a lawyer even though he is offering to work for free. Last year I interviewed a young 2007 graduate of Arizona State University's law school who had not gotten a lawyer job since graduating. I could have hired her for less than I pay my legal assistants.

Sure the economy is a problem that affects all of the U.S., but law schools need to be more open with students and disclose the real facts of law school graduate life. Securities laws require that issuers of securities disclose all material facts and not fail to omit any material facts. Arizona real estate law is the same for sellers of real estate. Why aren't law schools required to tell their prospective and actual students about the real costs and opportunities for legal employment, including actual and meaningful statistics about the hiring experience (or lack thereof) of the law school's graduates?

Posted by: Richard Keyt | Mar 10, 2010 12:09:16 PM

Why aren't you going to publish my comment on the absurdity of U of Ala starting a tax program?

Posted by: Richard Keyt | Mar 12, 2010 6:37:46 AM

Well, not everyone uses education for career placement. I am a self employed attorney and have been so almost my entire professional life. I already completed an LL.M. in another area besides tax and I am about to graduate from a well known MBA program.

I suspect a lot of part time students are not necessarily preoccupied with job placement.

Posted by: Brent Devere | Apr 12, 2010 7:32:55 PM

This post makes me wonder why the professor is shilling so hard for the new program. I suspect he thinks it is wonderful that more young lawyers will be able to go deeper into debt to get a masters degree in tax law. I’ve got news for him; the view from the ivory tower is much different than the view from the trenches where young lawyers must seek employment.

Posted by: Alabama Schools Online | Sep 26, 2012 4:21:23 AM

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