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Financing your legal education at W&L

Washington and Lee assists students in financing their legal education through its own scholarships and grants, and by its participation in federally-sponsored work and loan programs (Title IV). 

For first-year students, qualification for the University’s own scholarships and grants is based on undergraduate academic records, Law School Admission Test scores, probability of superior scholarship in the School of Law, and potential for leadership in the legal profession. There are not any need-based grants or scholarships for law students.

Qualification for state and federal financial assistance is determined by applicable regulations and by the availability of funds. Scholarship assistance in the second and third years will continue contingent upon academic performance and need for assistance. Financial aid will not be withdrawn where need exists; however, the proportion of grant to loan may be adjusted in the second and third years depending upon the relative quality of academic achievement.

For more specific information regarding the multiple steps in the financial aid and educational loan application process, as well as the opportunity to discuss related questions and concerns, prospective students are strongly encouraged to contact Cynthia Hintze, Senior Assistant Director of Financial Aid, Gilliam House, Washington and Lee University, Lexington, Virginia 24450, or call (540) 458-8032.  Her email address is

Application for Financial Assistance

Applicants for University and Federal assistance should complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The priority deadline is February 15. The FAFSA is available on-line (  The Federal School Code for Washington and Lee is 003768. After filing the FAFSA with the Federal Central Processor, the applicant will receive a multi-page Student Aid Report (SAR).

In cases where the Federal Central Processor has selected the student's application for federal verification, the student must submit to the Financial Aid Office by April 30 a complete, signed copy of his or her federal income tax return, including W2s, 1099s and schedules. Supplemental information or documentation may be requested by the Financial Aid Office, either to complete the studentıs application or to verify information provided on the FAFSA.

College Work-Study and On-Campus Employment 

The federally supported College Work-Study program may provide approximately $1,700 in additional aid or replace an equivalent amount of loan for students with demonstrated need for financial assistance. Students employed on-campus are paid for hours worked on a monthly basis. The program is administered by the Financial Aid Office. Students accepting College Work-Study or other on-campus employment must verify U.S. citizenship status by presenting to the Washington and Lee Personnel Office documentation such as 1) a valid U.S. passport or 2) a valid driver’s license with photograph and a certified copy of their birth certificate or the original card issued to them by the Social Security Administration. This is a federal requirement and must be satisfied before any individual can be approved to work.


Loans available to Washington and Lee financial aid applicants include Federal Perkins Loans, Federal Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford Loans, and non-federal educational loans.

Federal Perkins Loans bear a 5% interest rate, and while the student is in school, interest is paid by the federal government. Repayment usually commences nine months following graduation or withdrawal, with a maximum repayment period of ten years. Students may borrow up to $6,000 annually, up to a total of $40,000 for both undergraduate and graduate education. Perkins Loans are made from a pool of federal and University funds, and are awarded and administered by the Financial Aid Office. Perkins Loans do not require a separate loan application; however, a recipient of Perkins Loan must sign a promissory note for funds advanced at the beginning of the semester. Entrance loan counseling is required before a borrower receives funds, and exit loan counseling is required before a Perkins Loan recipient graduates or withdraws from the School of Law.

Federal Stafford Student Loans are available in subsidized and unsubsidized forms. Repayment usually commences six months following graduation or withdrawal with a maximum repayment period of ten years. Subsidized loans are need-based, and the federal government pays the interest on the loan while the borrower is in school and for a six-month grace period following graduation or withdrawal. Unsubsidized loans are not need-based; the federal government does not pay the interest while the borrower is in school or for a grace period thereafter. The borrower may defer payment of principal and interest during this time, in which case accrued interest is added to the principal. A student may borrow an annual maximum of $18,500 in combined Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford Student Loan. The subsidized portion may not exceed $8,500. The interest rate is variable, capped at 8.25%, and set annually each June for the subsequent academic year. Entrance loan counseling with the Financial Aid Office is required before a borrower receives funds, and exit loan counseling is required before a borrower graduates or withdraws.

Non-Federal Educational Loans are private loans, such as those available through Access Group or LawLoans. Borrowers must meet established credit criteria for loan approval. Washington and Lee cannot provide funding to replace loans denied due to adverse credit. For information about these supplemental loans, contact:

Access Group
1411 Foulk Road, Box 7400
Wilmington, Delaware 19803
Telephone 800/282-1550, or

P. O. Box 59019
Panama City, Florida 32412
Telephone 800/984-0190.

Federal Stafford/Non-Federal Education Loan Application Procedures

Federal Stafford Student Loans and Non-Federal Education Loans require application procedures separate from the filing of the FAFSA. Washington and Lee processes loan requests electronically with selected lenders such as Access Group and LawLoans. Information about loan application procedures appropriate to Washington and Lee University will be mailed to admitted students by the Financial Aid Office.

The Edmund D. Campbell Public Interest Loan Fund

One of the particular challenges faced by the legal profession in recent years has been ensuring the availability of quality legal representation for less-fortunate people or for public interest groups, and at the same time preserving the ability of law graduates to choose public service work, given the increasing cost of a legal education. The Edmund D. Campbell Public Interest Fund at W&L was created to meet this challenge directly, by helping recent graduates of Washington and Lee repay the educational loans they owe while working in the public interest. A recipient will be eligible for an award annually as long as he or she continues to be employed in public interest law, continues to have educational debt, and earns less than a maximum salary set by the Campbell Fund Committee, subject to adjustment for factors such as the recipientıs number of dependents, spouse’s income, and geographic location.

Estimated Expenses

Each year the Office of Financial Aid projects expenditures for law students at Washington and Lee School of Law.  The costs for the 2006-2007 school year are:

    Tuition   $30,500
    Fees   $275
    Mandatory Technology Fee   $200
    Health Fee   $200
    Mandatory Student Bar Association Fees   $100
    Projected Books/Supplies   $1,600
    Projected Living Expenses (on or off campus)   $14,095




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