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Law School Student Debt Exceeds $100,000 Amid Jobs Shortage

Law School Student Debt Exceeds $100,000 Amid Jobs Shortage
Students attend graduation ceremonies. Photographer: Butch Dill/AP Photo

April 18 (Bloomberg) -- Law school graduates are leaving college with an average of $100,433 in debt at a time when new lawyers outnumber legal jobs, according to a survey from U.S. News & World Report.

Graduates of California Western School of Law have an average of more than $153,000 in loans, the most among law schools nationwide, according to U.S. News, which surveyed 195 law schools.

This decade, U.S. law schools will produce four times as many new lawyers as there will be jobs for them, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The number of people taking the Law School Admission Test, or LSAT, required for admission to most law schools, dropped 24 percent over the past two years.

Average tuition and fees for private law schools have jumped 73 percent since 1999 to $35,743 in 2009, an American Bar Association survey shows.

To contact the reporter on this story: Janet Lorin in New York jlorin@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Lisa Wolfson at lwolfson@bloomberg.net.

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