LSAT Score Cancellation
LSAC gives test-takers a brief window to voluntarily cancel their LSAT scores. It must be strongly emphasized that students considering score cancellation will not be able to learn their scores before making this decision. The score cancellation period begins on the day after the test and concludes six calendar days after the test date (at 11:59 PM). An LSAT administration taken on August 1, for example, would have a score cancellation period that starts on August 2 and ends at 11:59 PM on August 7. Score cancellation after this window closes is not allowed for any reason. Score cancellation is irreversible, and score reports will note that the student cancelled his or her scores for an LSAT held on the date in question. Test-takers use their online accounts on the LSAC website to cancel scores.
If the student has cancelled scores for a disclosed LSAT administration, he or she will still have access to the test questions and the correct answers on the scored sections, although they will not receive their answer sheets. This privilege is not applicable to nondisclosed LSATs, for which LSAC keeps test questions and answers confidential.
LSAC reserves the right to cancel LSAT scores against the student's will for reasons of logistics, validity, or academic dishonesty. Damaged test materials or test exercises of questionable validity are respective examples of the first two possible causes of involuntary score cancellation. In these cases, every effort will be made to offer the test-taker a viable alternative. Actions that can initiate score cancellation for academic dishonesty include the use of prohibited electronic devices, writing on an unauthorized section of the test, or working beyond the test's time limit.
Registration for the LSAT may be cancelled at any point up to the day before the test. A test held on June 3, for instance, would have a cancellation deadline of June 2 at 11:59 PM. If the test-taker fails to cancel and fails to appear for their LSAT administration, this will be noted on their score reports with an "absent” marking. Refund policies for cancelled registration depend on when the cancellation was completed (see below).
Score reporting to the law schools designated by the test-taker at registration is automatic; the student does not have to do anything else to ensure that institutions receive their scores. LSAT score reports show every test for which the student has registered (typically limited to the LSAT's five-year validity period). If the student has cancelled his or her scores or registration for any test, this will be indicated on the score report.
Students with cancelled LSAT scores, whether the cancellation was voluntary or involuntary, are ineligible for refunds of registration and service fees associated with those test dates. For cancellation of registration, a partial refund of $50 is available if the student cancels on or before the refund request deadline, which is about two weeks before the test date.
As noted above, score cancellation must be completed well before scores are released, and this makes for a very difficult decision. It is possible, however, for a student to make an educated guess about whether or not he or she should even consider cancelling his or her scores. First, the test-taker should analyze his/her personality. Does he or she often experience unfounded anxiety? If so, then it's probably best to have confidence in one's performance and not cancel scores. Second, was there some reason that the test was unusually difficult, such as illness, a traumatic life event, or logistical issues? If so, and the test-taker is absolutely convinced that these problems contributed to far-less-than-optimal testing, score cancellation may be worth some thought.
Third, how will retesting affect the student's future plans? Will he or she be able to submit the application and start law school within their preferred timeframe? If not, then it's likely a sound strategy to simply live with whatever score he or she receives and retest only if necessary. Finally, was it a disclosed or nondisclosed LSAT? The former has at least some potential as a learning experience, while the latter has no such value at all. In general, LSAT score cancellation is a drastic measure and one we advise students to reserve for the most extreme circumstances.