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Most Expensive Law Schools in 2017

Did you ever want something really expensive, you just had to have it no matter how much it cost?

Like buying a new car, you bit the bullet, made the first payment and drove off without looking back. It didn't matter how much it actually cost -- interest payments, depreciation, taxes, fees, or whatever.

Now consider a purchase that cost between $100,000 and $250,000. Unless you are independently wealthy or have a full-ride scholarship, maybe you should slow down a little on this decision.

This is about law school and how much you are prepared to spend. Buckle up, Dorothy, we're not in Kansas anymore.

You went to law school imaging a career as a battle-worn litigator, perhaps, or a civil rights defending Supreme Court advocate. Or maybe you would have just been happy with doc review as a BigLaw associate. The pay is good, after all.

But you and law school just didn't click. Now, you're calling it quits. What could come next? Here are a few ideas, taken from the FindLaw archives.

Harvard Law School Will Accept GRE

Citing a cost savings to law school applicants, Harvard Law School announced that it will accept the Graduate Record Exam or the Law School Admission Test for students who apply beginning with the fall of 2017. Dean Martha Minow, in a prepared statement, said the move is designed to eliminate barriers for the most talented candidates for law and leadership. She said the pilot program will reduce the cost barrier of taking two admissions tests.

"For many students, preparing for and taking both the GRE and the LSAT is unaffordable," she said. "All students benefit when we can diversify our community in terms of academic background, country of origin, and financial circumstances."

The U.S. News and World Report law school rankings -- the only law school rankings that matter -- have been leaked. Spivey Consulting, the same "get me into law school" consulting company that obtained a leaked advance of last year's rankings, has reportedly done it again, grabbing an early copy of the 2018 rankings. (Yes, in law school ranking land, the 2018 list is released in 2017.)

And there seems to have been some surprising shakeups. For the first time in a long time, the top 14 schools, or T14, have shifted a bit.

Free LSAT Test Prep Coming Online From Khan Academy

Finally, there's something free for prospective law students. Well, it should be free next year anyway.

Khan Academy, an online provider of interactive educational materials, announced it will post free practice materials for students to prepare for the Law School Admission Test in 2018. The non-profit organization said it will work with the Law School Admissions Council, which administers the test.

"We're always looking for ways to help get information out there to test takers so they can prepare on their own, and they don't need to invest a lot of money to do this," Lily Knezevich, the LSAC's senior director of test development, told the ABA Journal. "We wanted to level the playing field and make law school accessible to all who are interested in pursuing law."

JD Sues Twitter and Her Alma Mater

Law graduate Tiffany Dehen may have trouble getting a job as a lawyer, but she is ahead of her class when it comes to creating a legal buzz on social media.

Dehen has sued Twitter, her law school, and an anonymous user for creating a false account in her name. She alleges the defendants defamed her with false posts about her support for Donald Trump and Adolph Hitler and with tweets such as her upcoming audition for:

Pre-Law Students' Interest in Politics Jumps After Election

Since Donald Trump became president, some might think that the path to the White House is through reality television.

Or perhaps it is the billionaires club, except that didn't work out for billionaire candidate Ross Perot. So maybe it's just like the late George Carlin said: "Anyone can become president of the United States. And that's the problem."

In any case, more pre-law students see law school as the way to politics than in recent years. According to Kaplan Test Prep, more than half of 500 students surveyed say they would consider running for political office. At 53 percent, it represents a 15 percent jump in five years.

"Law school has long been a bullpen of aspiring politicians, and we think the recent election showed many pre-law students of all political persuasions how important it is to stay involved and stand up for what you believe," said Jeff Thomas, executive director of pre-law programs, Kaplan Test Prep.

California Law School Deans Push Back at the Bar Exam

In the closing minutes of the Super Bowl this year, the Falcons sealed their fate when they made a critical mistake: they punted.

To punt -- such a well-known expression you don't have to know football to know what it means -- is to put off taking action in the face of a difficult situation. For the Falcons, it meant to delay going forward when they were winning the game. In retrospect, they lost the game because of that untimely decision.

The same could be said for California law schools faced with the lowest bar pass rates in 32 years. Rather than move forward with changes in legal education, they have asked the State Bar to lower the minimum score for the bar exam. It is a critical moment for legal education in California.

Student debt isn't just for your 20s anymore. With more than $1.3 trillion dollars in outstanding student loan debt in the United States, more and more students are taking decades to pay off their loans.

Some student borrowers, according to the New York Times, are saddled with debt well into retirement. And almost 40 percent of those retirement-age student debtors see a portion of their Social Security checks garnished for student loan payments, even when those payments push them into poverty.

Will University of North Carolina Start a New Law School?

Once the largest law school in North Carolina, Charlotte School of Law's student population has fallen from 1,500 a decade ago to less than 300 this semester. The for-profit law school, now on probation for failing educational standards and sanctioned with no federal funding, may not survive into the summer. But as one law school dies, another may arise.

The University of North Carolina, the public university system, is considering whether to open a law school in Charlotte. The state system already has law schools at campuses in Chapel Hill and Durham, but had considered opening a law school in Charlotte before the for-profit school was accredited in 2011.