What Is a JD Degree?

A J.D. degree, also known as the Juris Doctor degree, is a doctorate degree in law. The J.D. degree is the first professional graduate degree in law, and it is earned once an individual completes law school.

The J.D. degree is required for individuals to practice law in the United States. The J.D. program usually is a full-time academic program that typically requires three years to complete at an institution of higher education. The degree is offered by law schools approved by the American Bar Association, as well as schools not approved by the American Bar Association. A J.D. received from an American Bar Association-approved school satisfies all states' education requirements to sit for the bar examination.