Latin American & International Law
The Latin American & International Law concentration is one of the broadest and most diverse programs in the United States and the world. The interdisciplinary nature of the program allows students to see current issues and future directions of international and comparative law in economic, political, and social contexts. Faculty members are unparalleled in the breadth and depth of their engagement and knowledge. Our robust curricular offerings include human rights, immigration, arbitration, tax, and public international law. The program offers students the flexibility to design a program that complements their academic and professional interests. Clinics specializing in Civil Rights, Human Rights, Immigration, and Transnational Worker Rights give students the opportunity to learn firsthand through cases and projects how to integrate theory, skills, strategy, and law.
Students in the Latin American & International Law concentration often choose to pursue a Certificate in Latin American Studies through the University’s Teresa Lozano Long Institute for Latin American Studies (LLILAS). LLILAS is an interdisciplinary program that integrates more than 30 academic departments and some 160 faculty across the university. Students can take courses in art, anthropology, economics, history, literature, politics, public policy, and sociology. Students can earn a Certificate in Latin American Studies from LLILAS (in addition to the LL.M. degree from the Law School) by completing at least six credits through LLILAS.
Because of the importance of a foreign language to the practice of law in the Americas and around the world, students are required to demonstrate proficiency in Spanish or Portuguese. Students who are not native speakers of either language must pass a language proficiency test. Alternatively, the language requirement can be met by presenting evidence of two years of college-level Spanish or Portuguese plus performance deemed satisfactory during a 15-minute oral interview designed to assess the student’s ability to comprehend and converse in the language. In special circumstances, proficiency in a language other than Spanish or Portuguese may satisfy the language requirement.
This concentration is open to students with a foreign law degree and students with a J.D.
Additionally, students have access to the Law School’s Institute for Transnational Law and the Texas International Law Journal. The Institute for Transnational Law, which was re-imagined and relaunched in 2017 to coordinate the Law School’s programs, resources, and events relevant to the areas of international and comparative law. A reflection of Texas Law’s strength in the field, the Institute for Transnational Law deepens a rich international and comparative law curriculum and enhances the intellectual life of the Law School.
In the rapidly expanding discipline of international law, the Texas International Law Journal (TILJ) helps readers stay abreast and informed of recent developments and new scholarship by providing access to leading international legal, theoretical, and policy analysis. TILJ publishes academic articles, essays, and student notes in the areas of public and private international law, international legal theory, the law of international organizations, comparative and foreign law, and domestic laws with significant international implications. LL.M. students are welcome to serve on the Journal.
Alumni Juan Lozada LL.M. ’18 said “I chose the International & Latin American Law Concentration because I am an asylum attorney and many of my clients are from Latin America, so having the chance to look at Latin America from the point of view of a talented journalist, a respected historian, and four world-renowned human right advocates, was a once in a lifetime opportunity. Needless to say, the experience made me a better and more well-rounded advocate for my clients.”
- A total of 24 credit hours that must be completed in one academic year (fall and spring semesters).
- 12 concentration-specific credit hours (see below).
- A three-credit writing seminar or a two-credit directed research paper (30-40 double-spaced pages).
- Constitutional Law for Foreign Lawyers (This is a requirement for students with a foreign law degree. Students with a background in common law may request a waiver from this requirement.)
- Non-U.S. J.D. students planning to take a U.S. state bar exam must also complete certain bar-required courses as part of their LL.M. degree program to be eligible to take the bar examination.
Law School Concentration Requirements
LL.M. students have two options with respect to the concentration.
Option 1: Students concentrate in one area and obtain a certificate accordingly. Students pursuing this option must complete 12 credits from one focus area (Latin American or International or Comparative Law.
Option 2: Students concentrate in two areas and obtain a certificate accordingly. Students pursuing this option are required to complete at least 12 credits from two focus areas. Concentration requirements include:
- Must complete 12 credit hours from some combination of two focus areas (Latin American and International or Comparative Law and no fewer than 3 credits in one of the two focus areas).
Certificate in Latin American Studies from LLILAS
- Must complete at least six credits (of the required 12 credits) in graduate-level courses approved by LLILAS.
- Introduction to Domestic & International Arbitration
- Introduction to European Union Law
- International Business Litigation
- International Business Transactions
- International Commercial Arbitration
- International Criminal Law
- International Human Rights Law
- International Human Rights Litigation
- International Investor/State Arbitration
- International Petroleum Transactions
- International Tax
- International Trade
- Legal Research, Advanced: Foreign & International Law
- Public International Law
- Terror & Consent: Constitutional & International Law
- Clinic: Human Rights
- Clinic: Immigration
- Clinic: Transnational Worker Rights
- Seminar: Citizenship
- Seminar: Comparative Judicial Politics
- Seminar: Corporate & International Finance & Governance
- Seminar: Human Rights & Inequality: Law & the Production of Inequality
- Seminar: International Business Litigation
- Seminar: International Human Rights, Anti-Impunity & Criminal Law
- Seminar: Law & Justice
- Seminar: Law of United States-Mexico Border
- Seminar: Maritime Law: Commercial Problems
- Seminar: Transactional Class Actions
Note: The sample courses listed above are sample course offerings only and are not necessarily offered every semester. Past, current, and future courses can be accessed on the Law School’s Interactive Course Schedule.