University of Detroit Mercy School of Law

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University of Detroit Mercy School of Law
School typePrivate
DeanPhyllis L. Crocker[1]
LocationDetroit, Michigan, U.S.

The University of Detroit Mercy School of Law is the law school of the University of Detroit Mercy and is located in Downtown Detroit, Michigan across from the Renaissance Center. Founded in 1912, Detroit Mercy Law is a private Roman Catholic law school and has been ABA-accredited since 1933.[2] The Law School has an annual enrollment of about 536 students and currently has 88 faculty members (28 full-time, 60 adjunct).

Detroit Mercy Law offers full-time, part-time and extended part-time JD programs as well as a number of dual degrees, including a J.D./M.B.A. and Dual J.D. program.[3] In 2009, the Law School admitted about 45 percent of its 1,707 full-time applicants and about 40 percent of its 219 part-time applicants.[4] The Law School's JD 2016 entering class had a median LSAT of 151 and a median GPA of 3.15 and a median LSAT of 155 and a median GPA of 3.312 for Dual JD students. In January 2012, Detroit Mercy Law purchased a 6,000 sq. ft. facility across the street from its campus which will house the numerous clinics operated by the school.


Detroit Mercy Law was founded as the University of Detroit Law School in 1912 (the University of Detroit merged with Mercy College of Detroit in 1990 to become the University of Detroit Mercy). It is the oldest private law school in Michigan and it shares the Jesuit and Mercy tradition of value oriented education.[5] The historic Renaissance-style campus is located between East Jefferson Avenue and East Larned Street just north of I-375 and is within a short walking distance to the Renaissance Center and numerous state and federal government buildings, including the Third Judicial Circuit Court (Wayne County) and the Federal District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan among others.


82.5% of the Class of 2018 was employed in a full-time, long-term, bar passage-required or JD advantage position as of March 15, 2019, as stated in the ABA-required disclosures on the Detroit Mercy Law website. Approximately 84% of the Class of 2017 was so employed as of March 15, 2018, which was higher than the national average of 75% for the law school Class of 2017.[6]

2018 Detroit Mercy Law Employment Stats
Employment Status Percentage
Employed - Bar Passage Required
Employed - J.D. Advantage
Employed - Professional Position
Employed - Non-Professional Position
Employed - Undeterminable
Pursuing Graduate Degree Full Time
Unemployed - Start Date Deferred
Unemployed - Not Seeking
Unemployed - Seeking
Employment Status Unknown
Total of 211 Graduates



University of Detroit Mercy is ranked No. 53-69 in Part-time Law and No. 148-194 in Full-time Law in the 2020 U.S. News & World Report Law School rankings.[8]


Tuition and fees at University of Detroit Mercy School of Law for the 2016-17 academic year is $40,422 per year (for 30 credits).[9]

Academics, Publications, and Moot Court[edit]

Detroit Mercy Law maintains a core first-year curriculum, consisting of Contracts, Civil Procedure, Property, Torts, Criminal Law, Introduction to Legal Research and Communication and Applied Legal Theory and Analysis (ALTA). Other required courses include Constitutional Law, Evidence, Federal Income Taxation, and Professional Responsibility.[10]

The School's clinical program was founded as the Urban Law Clinic in 1965, and was among the earliest clinics in the nation. Since that time, the program has received numerous awards including the ABA Louis M. Brown Award for Legal Access with Meritorious Recognition in 2012 and the ABA Law Student Division's Judy M. Weightman Memorial Public Interest Award in 2006. Students attend weekly classes that focus on the relevant skills and substantive law and all clinics provide for meaningful guided reflection.

The Law School's main academic publication is the University of Detroit Mercy Law Review, having contributed to the legal scholarship of the state of Michigan and the nation since 1916. This student-led organization publishes four issues a year and hosts an annual symposium in the spring to discuss topics of developing legal significance and scholarly debate. Within the last ten years, Detroit Mercy Law Review articles have been cited in the opinions of the United States Supreme Court, United States Circuit Courts of Appeals, and many state supreme courts (including Michigan).[11]

The School of Law hosts both an internal trial and appellate moot court competition annually known as the G. Mennen Williams Moot Court Competition. The school's Moot Court Team competes nationally and has had success both at the regional and national level: it was the National Champion for the 2009 National Invitational Appellate Moot Court Competition and the 2008 McGee Civil Rights National Moot Court Competition:[12]

Notable alumni[edit]

Graduates of Detroit Mercy Law include over half of Michigan state prosecutors as well as sitting judges on the U.S. Courts of Appeals, U.S. District Courts, the Michigan Supreme Court, and the Michigan Court of Appeals. The School of Law has also graduated over 120 current judges on various district, municipal and probate courts in Michigan. Alumni have also held major elective offices in the state and local governments of Michigan, including three former mayors of the City of Detroit, two former Michigan Attorneys General, and a host of other executive positions.[13]

Notable judges from Detroit Mercy Law:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ University News, "Phyllis Crocker named dean of UDM School of Law",
  2. ^ "University of Detroit Mercy School of Law". Retrieved 15 March 2011.
  3. ^ "JD Programs and Required Courses". University of Detroit Mercy School of Law. Retrieved 15 March 2011.
  4. ^ "University of Detroit Mercy School of Law". Retrieved 15 March 2011.
  5. ^ "University of Detroit Mercy School of Law". Copyright © 2011 LexisNexis, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. Retrieved 15 March 2011.
  6. ^ "Detroit Mercy Employment Stats". 2019-04-22.
  7. ^ "Detroit Mercy Law 2018 Placement Stats". 2019-04-22.
  8. ^ "University of Detroit — Mercy". Best Law Schools. U.S. News & World Report. Retrieved 4 June 2019.
  9. ^ "Tuition and Expenses" (PDF).
  10. ^ "Academics: Required and Bar-related Courses". © 2006-2010 University of Detroit Mercy School of Law. Retrieved 15 March 2011.
  11. ^ "Law Review". © 2006-2010 University of Detroit Mercy School of Law. Retrieved 15 March 2011.
  12. ^ "Moot court". © 2006-2010 University of Detroit Mercy School of Law. Retrieved 15 March 2011.
  13. ^ "University of Detroit Mercy School of Law".

External links[edit]