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Studying a LLM (Master of Laws) Program in Spain

PLEASE NOTE: As a result of Brexit, from Autumn 2021 postgraduate students from the European Union studying at a UK university will be charged the same tuition fees as international students. UK students studying their postgraduate course at a European university are also likely to incur higher tuition fees than their EU counterparts. It is advisable to check with the individual universities in the UK and Europe for up-to-date information on tuition fees for all postgraduate programs.

Find LLM programs in Spain

In today’s global climate the legal industry has become increasingly competitive, motivating law students to pursue an LLM abroad as this adds an international dimension to a student's outlook and thinking. Employers’ seek lawyers who have international training and expertise as the needs and concerns of the clients are global; firms in different parts of the world are consolidating and laws of different jurisdictions have become inter-connected in various complex transactions like never before. For this reason various countries in the Europe, particularly Spain, with their focus on International and European law have become popular study destinations for LLM students.

While traditionally students considered the USA, UK, Australia and Canada as the obvious choices, the cost of studying for an LLM program in these countries can be quite high and often means a significant amount of more debt for students. As an alternative, students are increasingly becoming interested in European countries to study - and what county is a better educational destination than Spain!

Spain’s educational system provides great opportunity for academic achievements and personal growth, as well as the chance to enjoy its mild climate, sandy beaches, exotic islands and rich historic culture. Madrid is one of the most dynamic cities in Europe while Barcelona known for the work of great artists like Picasso and Miro has a lot on offer in terms of its history, art and heritage. Studying a Master of Laws in Spain will allow you to gain a postgraduate law qualification furthering your career prospects in law at an affordable price whilst also providing the opportunity to travel within Europe and learn a new language i.e. Spanish. The LLM programs in Spain also provide the great opportunity to study in a cosmopolitan and multi-cultural environment.    

Studying for a Master of Laws in Spain

There are various institutions of excellent repute in Spain that have been ranked very highly in many rankings charts. The universities that offer an LLM in Spain include ESADE Business School, IE Law School,  Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona,  Pompeu Fabra University,  University of Deusto,  Universidad Pontificia Comillas,  Universidad de Zaragoza,  University Rovira I Virgili, University of Seville and Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. The specialisations are wide ranging and students can choose from the following:

International Business Law; Tax Law; Trade and Finance Law; Corporate Law; Intellectual Property Law; International and European Business Law; Public Policy and International Development; International Relations and Migration Policies; Telecommunications Law and Information Technology; Masters in the Practice of Law.

Typically, the languages of instruction are English and Spanish. Therefore, it is vital that students must not only have a sound grasp of English but also of Spanish. The courses can be undertaken at a full-time or part-time basis or through research (students are required to complete certain compulsory training modules followed by a final master’s thesis). However, it is generally a necessary condition for international students to gain an entry clearance visa that they are enrolled into education full time and may not study on part-time basis. We strongly advise that you check whether this applies to your country of nationality and you thoroughly read through the student entry visa guidance provided by the Spanish consulate in your country.    

Entry requirements for a Spanish university

The entry requirements for a Spanish university are typically a bachelor’s degree in law or equivalent and proficiency in English Language and Spanish. The following documents are required for admission into most institutions (we strongly advise you to check the specific requirements of the university you are interested in):

  1. University application form
  2. Transcripts
  3. CV
  4. Photographs
  5. Reference Letter(s)
  6. Proof of English Language proficiency for e.g. IELTS/TOEFL results

In a few universities, an admission test or a telephone interview may also be conducted at the discretion of the university.

Tuition fees & living costs

The tuition fees for your LLM program in Spain will depend on the university of your choice. If you choose to study in Barcelona you may note that it is one of the more expensive cities in Spain. The tuition fees varies with some LLM degrees costing between €25,000 to €28,000 for the LLM program because of the specialist programs and the reputation of the university while others ranging from €15,000 to €20,000. It is difficult to quote a specific figure as the range varies largely and students are advised to check the price for each individual course of their choice. 

The average living cost in Spain (excluding accommodation) generally varies between €250 to €500 per month. It is also possible to find part-time work which does not exceed the number of hours permitted by your visa although, as a general rule students are required to demonstrate that they have sufficient funds to meet the expenses of their course in order to be granted a valid entry visa. Also, you may wish to consider the curriculum and demands of your course before you apply for part-time work. A master's course can be quite challenging and therefore, the hours you may be able to work may be limited.  

Visa & immigration

For citizens of the European Union member countries no visa is required, all that is required is a valid passport. International students from outside the EU require a student visa to gain entry into Spain. The conditions, requirements and terms of the visa are subject to change so students are required to consult the embassy/consulate in their home country to obtain information prior to applying. Generally, the following documents are required for the visa application process:

Visa application form


Proof of funding

University enrolment letter/letter of acceptance

Health insurance

Proof of vaccinations (may be required for certain countries)

We also advise students to ensure that they apply for the visa several weeks prior to the date of commencement of their course ensuring there is sufficient time for processing of their visa applications. Please note that the processing times differ for each country and you are advised to check with the Spanish consulate in your home country. 

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