How To Prepare for a Career in Tax Law

Pursuing an LLM in Taxation

Many students find that it is difficult to fit in all of the important tax classes during their JD programs, and prefer to approach certain topics a structured classroom environment rather than in a piecemeal fashion while first starting in practice. After graduating from the JD program, you may choose to continue your tax studies at NYU by enrolling in advanced tax courses. The LLM in Taxation is a 24-credit degree program, which students complete full-time during a one-year period or part-time over a period of study of up to five years. Special rules apply, however, for NYU JD students. If you are interested in pursuing an LLM in Taxation, it is important that you consider these rules, described below, as you design your JD tax course schedule.

JD/LLM in Taxation

If you participate in the JD/LLM program, you must complete 12 credits of advanced tax courses while pursuing your JD degree. An advanced tax course includes all tax courses except Income Taxation and the three-credit Tax Clinic session. If you complete at least 12 credits of advanced tax courses before receiving your JD, you may then pursue your LLM in Taxation by enrolling full-time at NYU during the fall semester following your graduation from the JD program. You will be able to “double-count” the 12 credits of advanced tax courses that you completed as a JD student toward your LLM in Taxation. During the additional fall semester following your JD graduation, you must complete 12 additional credits, at least 8 of which must consist of credits for advanced tax courses. All JD/LLM students must complete at least one course in tax procedure and one course in tax policy. Upon successful completion of this additional semester, you will earn an LLM in Taxation in addition to your JD degree.

Part-time LLM in Taxation

After graduating from your JD program, you may not wish to spend an additional semester full-time at NYU. But if you have taken advanced tax courses, you may still pursue your LLM in Taxation on a part-time basis. You may take as long as five years to complete the LLM in Taxation requirements. The five-year period begins to run from the semester in which you took your first advanced tax course as a JD student. If you enroll in this program, you will be able to double-count up to 12 advanced tax credits taken during your JD program toward your LLM in Taxation. You do not have to complete 12 credits of advanced tax courses as a JD student to enroll in the part-time LLM in Taxation program following graduation from your JD program. For example, if you take 8 advanced tax credits as a JD, you will be able to double-count these credits toward your LLM in Taxation on a part-time basis (subject to the five-year rule). All JD students who pursue the part-time LLM in Taxation are required to complete at least one course in tax procedure and one course in tax policy.

Finally, as a part-time LLM student, as long as you complete 12 advanced tax credits by taking tax courses on campus (including the credits that you take during your JD program), you may complete the remainder of your LLM in Taxation by taking online tax courses. The NYU Graduate Tax Program offers many advanced tax courses in an online format each year. As a student in one of these classes, you participate by viewing videos of a course that is being offered on campus during that semester or that was recorded during a previous semester. You complete the same exam as all other students, both on-campus and online, who are enrolled in the course. The availability of online tax courses offers significant flexibility to our students who are practicing or who work in other cities. For example, you could complete 12 advanced tax credits during your JD program at NYU, move to Chicago following graduation, and complete the remaining 12 advanced tax credits by enrolling entirely in online courses during the five-year period described above.

Every March, the Graduate Tax Program hosts a special meeting for all JD students who are interested in learning about the JD/LLM in Taxation program, the part-time LLM in Taxation program and related scholarship opportunities. If you are interested in applying to the LLM in Taxation program, please e-mail law.grad.moreinfo@nyu.edu to request more information.