Help for Law Students

Overwhelmed by the stress of law school? Feeling anxious or sad much of the time?  Concerned about your use of alcohol, prescription or other drugs? LCL can help!

Many law students are reluctant to seek help for mental health and substance use issues, concerned that doing so will negatively affect their academic status and/or their chances of bar admission and future employment. In fact, our experience indicates the opposite to be true. If left untreated, these conditions will eventually sabotage the student’s law school performance and jeopardize his or her admission to the Bar. The sooner a student seeks and accepts help the better. Early utilization of confidential LCL services can improve the likelihood of successfully meeting the character and fitness standards of the Board of Law Examiners. It will also allow you to launch your career from a place of good health and well-being. 

If you know a law school student in distress, please give us a call. LCL’s confidential Helpline services are available to students of Pennsylvania’s nine law schools. We can work with you to encourage the student to utilize our services.

Rest assured that LCL services are 100% confidential. We do not report any of your personal information (or that of the party you may be concerned about) to any Board of Legal Examiners, law school staff or any other party without your express consent.

 Available Helpline Services for Law Students:

  • General information, resources and free literature
  • Referral to a qualified healthcare provider for a free, private and confidential consultation and diagnosis
  • Development of a personalized treatment plan, if indicated, by a healthcare professional
  • Assistance with treatment admissions
  • Peer support from a recovering law student or lawyer who has faced and overcome similar mental health or substance use challenges
  • Resource coordination and ongoing support by LCL staff
  • Information on lawyer and law student-only support groups
  • Help developing a plan of approach to offer assistance to a law student that you may be concerned about

Law Student Mental Health

Students enter law school with a prevalence of mental health and substance related issues similar to other incoming graduate students, yet studies have repeatedly shown that law students’ risk of developing these disorders increases significantly over the following years of school. A recent large-scale survey revealed that, among practicing U.S. attorneys, those in their first 10 years of practice (which includes recent law school graduates) have the highest risk of developing substance use and mental health problems. Now is the time to seek the help you need.

A comprehensive survey (published in 2016) of over 3,000 law students attending 15 U.S. law schools revealed the following alarming statistics:

  • Law students screened positive for problematic alcohol use: 25% 25%
  • Law students screened positive for symptoms of depression: 17% 17%
  • Law students screened positive for an anxiety disorder: 37% 37%
  • Law students struggling with eating disorders: 27% 27%
These statistics illustrate how important it is for law students to get the help they need as soon as possible, so as to mitigate personal and professional consequences and have the best chance of launching their careers from a place of health and well-being.

Organ, J. M., Jaffe, D. B., Esq., & Bender, K. M., PHD. (2016, Fall). Suffering in Silence: The Survey of Law Student Well-Being and the Reluctance of Law Students to Seek Help for Substance Use and Mental Health Concerns. Journal of Legal Education66(1), 116-156.