Those interested in a formal divorce law education typically enroll in a Juris Doctor (J.D.) or Master of Law (LL.M.) degree program, which includes courses in civil and family law. Three-year J.D. students learn about all facets of U.S. law, like criminal procedure, business transactions, family relations and child custody, corporate securities, estate law and media issues. They also gain research skills and direct experience through writing law reviews and participating in mock trials and clinical training. Applicants must have a bachelor's degree, acceptable Law School Admission Test (LSAT) scores, letters of recommendation, personal statements and a resume.
The LL.M. path is research-oriented and writing intensive, as it's designed for prior law students who wish to specialize. Courses related to marriage-dissolution focus on international or comparative divorce law. The admissions process is very competitive, with 20% or fewer applicants accepted. Prospective enrollees must have a J.D.
Juris Doctor Degree
J.D. programs require first-year students to complete courses in constitutional law, civil law, criminal law, torts and legal writing. Upperclassmen interested in divorce law can take advanced units in family and civil law. Other common subjects addressed are:
- Family law
- Juvenile law
- Dispute resolution and negotiation
Master of Laws Degree
LL.M. curriculum includes seminars, formal lectures and research courses. There's an emphasis in comparative law, discussing sub-areas like:
- Divorce law
- Children's rights law
- Family law
- Domestic violence law
- Property law
Popular Career Options
Graduates are qualified for a number of positions in the field. Some individuals work as divorce mediators, private practice divorce attorneys and family law professors. Popular job titles specifically for LL.M. degree holders include:
- International lawyer
- Divorce law consultant
- Divorce law statistics researcher
Continuing Education Information
In order to practice law in the United States, individuals need to pass the bar exam, which tests knowledge of area regulations.
Students can complete a Juris Doctor Degree program or Master of Law program to be qualified for employment as a divorce lawyer, mediator, or consultant. Throughout these programs, students will complete courses related to family, civil, and divorce law along with mock trials and clinical training.