Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico School of Law
The information on this page was provided by the law school.
Official Guide to ABA-Approved JD Programs
The School of Law of the Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico was founded in 1961. It is located within the main campus of the Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico, on the southern part of the island in the historical city of Ponce, one of the most beautiful places in Puerto Rico.
The primary objective of the Pontifical Catholic University School of Law is the formation of lawyers imbued with a deep love and concern for their Catholic faith and imbedded in the redeeming truths of Christian philosophy and ethics. The law school of the Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico hopes to contribute to upholding the high ethical, cultural, and literary accomplishments of the Puerto Rican bar, which historically represents a tradition of moral austerity, intellectual achievement, and professional competence.
Library and Physical Facilities
The School of Law occupies the Spellman Building. Its location on the campus of Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico enables students to study related academic disciplines, participate in the intellectual life, and enjoy many other facilities of the university.
Among the materials in the library is a comprehensive and growing collection of legal treatises, tests, monographs, and periodicals, including the most important and recent publications in civil, common, and comparative law. Modern audiovisual equipment and computerized services are also available. The library is an authorized depository for United Nations documents as well as for United States government documents. In addition, it offers the services of the Westlaw and LexisNexis systems, which permit computer-assisted legal research.
The required subjects are
- Administrative Law
- Advanced Legal Analysis
- Civil Procedure
- Constitutional Law
- Criminal Procedure
- Family Law
- Federal Jurisdiction
- Fundamentals of Research, Analysis, and Writing
- Intermediate Research, Analysis, and Writing
- Introduction to Law
- Legal Aid Clinic
- Legal Ethics and Professional Responsibility
- Mercantile Law
- Notarial Law
- Penal Law
- Property Law
- Successions and Donations
- Trial Practice
- Workshop Bar Preparation
The basic program covers three years in the day division or four years in the evening division.
The school curriculum includes a clinical program for third-year students. Pursuant to a rule approved by the Supreme Court of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico in 1974, students practice trial advocacy under the supervision of law school professors in the Courts of First Instance and in administrative agencies.
The Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico also offers a combined JD/MBA degree. For the combined degree, students are required to complete 85 credit hours at the School of Law (79 required credits and 6 elective credits), plus 9 credit hours in electives completed at the Graduate Program of the School of Business Administration, for a total of 94 credit hours. In addition, the students must complete 34 credit hours at the School of Business Administration (31 required credits and 3 elective credits) and an additional 9 approved elective credits in JD, for a total of 43 credits, plus 4 hours of Theology.
Application for admission is open to men and women of good character who have earned a bachelor’s degree from a qualified institution and have obtained a 2.5 grade-point average.
The required forms for application for admission and all other information may be obtained from the registrar of the law school and should be filed with all supporting documents before April 15. The School of Law admits beginning students in August and January for both the full-time and part-time programs.
Applicants are required to take both the LSAT and the Examen de Admisión a Estudios de Posgrado (EXADEP; formerly PAEG).
Test scores are not the only factor considered. Besides the objective factors, there are many intangible and personal considerations, such as strong motivation, disadvantaged circumstances, evidence of improving performance, and relevant work experience. A personal interview of the applicant by a committee is essential before a decision is made. Applicants of both sexes and from all religious, racial, social, and ethnic backgrounds are encouraged to apply.
All courses are offered only in Spanish. Consequently, students are required to be proficient in Spanish.
The law review, Revista de Derecho Puertorriqueño, is devoted to scholarly analysis and discussion of development of the law. It publishes student notes, comments, and surveys, as well as articles of outstanding quality submitted by attorneys, judges, and other members of the legal profession. The school has a student council, a chapter of the National Association of Law Students of Puerto Rico, and an Association for Women’s Rights. Local chapters of Phi Alpha Delta international law fraternity, the Delta Theta Phi law fraternity, and the Law Student Division of the ABA are also active and well organized in the law school.
Students live either in university residences or private housing. Inquiries concerning housing facilities should be addressed to:
Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico
2250 Avenida Las Americas
Ponce, PR 00717-9997
Expenses and Financial Aid
There is a deferred plan for students who have financial difficulties at the time of registration. The university has made available for law students several full-tuition scholarships to be awarded on the basis of scholastic excellence. The university also has an office for student loans and other types of financial services.