You’ve decided that you want to study an LLM program in the English language but you want to live in France… so what are your options?
You might be surprised to hear that there are more options than you would think for studying the law at the LLM level in France in the English language. Plus, out of those who opt to study their LLM at a law school in France, many students will find that they also take intensive French language courses as part of their LLM studies. This is a great way to settle into life in France as well as to add another feather to your bow and give your CV a real boost.
Why study an LLM in a top law school in France?
The law of France is different to the law in many English-speaking countries as it is based on the Civil Law system otherwise known as Napoleonic Law. Many other countries use similar or related legal systems especially those that have a historical tie with France or with close European neighbours to France like Belgium. If you are working or studying in a country that uses Common Law, as most English-speaking countries do, then taking the time to understand the Civil Law system will help your career grow on an international level as all international organisations need to understand how to operate in different jurisdictions.
What do the top law schools in France have to offer?
Most of the best law schools in France are based in Paris, which allows international students to travel easily around Europe and the world. France is a founding member of the EU and so can offer access into the institutions of the European Union (EU) and other organisations related to the EU that are unavailable from other countries. France also has a permanent seat on the UN's Security Council, so offers an introduction to the United Nations that many other countries cannot. Some law schools in France have been teaching for a long time, for example Sorbonne University which was founded in its earliest form in 1257, and others are more recently established such as the University of Paris II Panthéon-Assas which was established as recently as 1971. This means there is a breadth to the approaches to teaching between what ancient institutions can offer and the more modern approaches of the recently established institutions – and both are equally valid.
What are the teaching methods like?
Universities in France can be huge and the legal education is similar to other European nations, but can also be quite interactive with students giving presentations or offering opinions. There are several areas of the law that you can study in English such as Business Law, Tax Law, Transnational Arbitration, and European Law and in addition to French language course many universities offer additional language training in other European languages.
What are the tuition fees at the top law schools in France?
At the University of Paris II Panthéon-Assas international students can expect to pay €10,000 for their year's tuition fees. Alternatively, at the Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne the tuition fees are €6,000 per year for all students. If you are planning on studying a particular legal area rather than at a particular law school, then it definitely pays to check the tuition fees at the different French institutions.
Top 5 law schools in France
Here are the top law schools in France.