Pre-Law Conference FAQ
Pre-Law Conference FAQ

What is the Pre-Law Conference, Law School Expo, and Mock Trial Competition?
The Phi Alpha Delta Pre-Law Conference is an annual event held specifically for pre-law members. It consists of workshops, speakers, a mock trial competition, and a law school/vendor expo. It creates an environment of learning, leadership development and networking for those planning on attending law school. It is also an opportunity to sightsee and explore law schools in Washington, D.C.

When and where is the 2020 Pre-Law Conference?
The 2020 Pre-Law Conference will be held November 4-8, 2020 right outside of Washington, D.C. in Arlington, Virginia at the Renaissance Arlington Capital View Hotel (2800 South Potomac Ave, Arlington, VA 22202).

How much does it cost to attend Pre-Law Conference?
The registration fee for the 2020 Conference is $300.00 for student members. Faculty members may attend for free. Additional registration options are available for non-members and daily attendees. See “Registration and Financing” for more details and payment plan options.

Why should I attend the Pre-Law Conference?
This year’s Conference is packed with programming and leadership training that will provide invaluable fraternal networking, professional growth, and important information for your chapter’s future success.

You’ll be provided with information to bring back to your chapter’s membership, and that will benefit you in the pursuit of a legal education and career. We also provide time for attendees to sight-see around Washington, D.C. and visit local law schools.

What’s going to happen at Pre-Law Conference?
There will be several speakers giving presentations at the Conference about law school admissions, the field of law, financing your education, and more. We have plenty of workshops to allow students the opportunity to customize their Conference experience and get focused attention from presenters.

Conference attendees have the option to participate in the National P.A.D. Pre-Law Mock Trial Competition. The Competition is judged by volunteer law students, lawyers & judges (both P.A.D. alumni and non-members) who offer invaluable, real-world feedback.

The Law Expo allows members to meet with 100+ law schools and vendors from across the country. Many law schools waive application fees for students attending the Pre-Law Conference. The Expo is also a great way to network with admission reps from the schools you want to attend.

What happens if it is not safe to travel by the time the 2020 Pre-Law Conference takes place?
In the event an event forces us to change the format of Pre-Law Conference (such as the COVID-19 pandemic, a weather event, etc.) we will contact all registrants with information as soon as possible. If time and circumstances permit, we will make every effort to offer Pre-Law Conference in an online format if it is deemed unsafe for attendees to travel or impossible for the Renaissance to host us.

How much does the hotel cost?
The room rate is $145/night, plus taxes. This rate is for one room - up to four people can stay in a double room. You will not be charged for your room until you leave the hotel. However, you will need to enter credit card information to place a hold on your room, and that credit card must have an expiration date of December 2020 or later.

Do I book my own hotel room?
Yes, members must book their own hotel room. We have a reserved room block at the Renaissance Arlington. The room block link will be available soon. The deadline to book your room is October 14, 2020. You will not be able to book at the discounted rate after this date.

I want to share a room with someone – can we split the cost of the room?
Yes! You and your roommate must book your room together to be in the same room. Since nothing is charged to your credit card until you check in at the hotel, you can split the cost between the two of you upon arrival. The split rate is approximately $72.50 per person per night.

What’s the closest airport? How do I get to the hotel from the airport?
The closest airport is Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (airport code DCA). The Renaissance offers a courtesy airport shuttle to Reagan National Airport (DCA) which operates from 5:00 am to 11:30 pm daily (Times subject to change.) To call the shuttle for pick up, please call the shuttle phone line: +1 (703) 413-1300 directly at (703) 418-1234.

Does the hotel have parking?
Yes, the hotel offers self-park and valet parking. Parking is free for overnight guests booked in our room block. Daily parking is available for a reduced rate.

What time is check in and check out?
Check in time is 3:00 PM. Check-out time is 12:00 PM (noon).

How much does the conference cost? What’s included in the registration fee?
The registration fee for student members is $300. The fee for non-member student attendees is $375. Members who wish to attend part of the Conference may register using our daily rate, which is $100/day. Faculty may attend for free.

Your registration includes most of your meals, admittance to the Law School Expo, admittance to speaker presentations, admittance to the workshops, the Awards Banquet, and all Conference materials. All Conference attendees receive a free t-shirt and are eligible to win giveaways provided by the P.A.D. Online Store, member benefit partners and law schools attending the Expo.

The conference registration fee does not include the cost of the hotel room.

I’m interested in the daily rate. How do I register with this option?
Please contact Pre-Law Operations Coordinator Liz Dunlap at or by calling (410) 347-3118 to register as a daily attendee.

Do I need to pay the registration fee when I register? Can I set up a payment plan?
No, you do not need to pay the registration fee when you register. We offer deferred payment options. We also offer interest-free and customizable payment plans to students/chapters that wish go to the Conference. Plans are incredibly flexible in terms of due dates and amounts. Email with payment plan questions.

Are there any discounts?
Yes! There is a $25 early bird discount for anyone who registers before July 31st.

If you plan to bring multiple students to the Conference, we are offering a “buy 4 get one free” deal. If you register and pay for four Conference attendees, the fifth attendee from your chapter may attend for free. Contact to take advantage of this deal.

What kind of funding options are available so that we can attend the Conference?
We recommend that you try to raise funds by having chapter fundraisers or petitioning your school’s student activities office for funding. Set a goal for fundraising and for your chapter to be able to attend the Conference. We recommend that chapters start fundraising in the spring so they have enough lead time to ensure that they can send members to Conference in the fall. We encourage chapters to be in a position where they can afford to send at least a few members each year. For more in-depth guidance on fundraising please look over our Pre-Law Fundraising Guide.

We will host a recruitment challenge in the fall in which the grand prize for the winning chapter is four free Pre-Law Conference registrations.

We have a limited number of scholarships available that cover the registration fee. See the “Scholarships” link on the event page for additional details.

We also offer interest-free and customizable payment plans to students/chapters that wish go to the conference.

Is there a deadline to register for the Conference?
No, you may register up to the start of the Conference. However, registrations submitted after October 14, 2020 may not receive their preferred t-shirt size.

I registered for Pre-Law Conference, but I can no longer attend. What should I do?
Please contact to discuss your options. Full refunds will be offered through October 14, 2020. You may also transfer your registration to another chapter member.

When should I arrive for the conference?
If you are participating in Mock Trial then you will need to arrive on Wednesday, November 4th in time for the 6:00 PM Captain’s Meeting.

If you are not a Mock Trial participant then you should aim to arrive sometime between 12:00 – 6:00 PM on Thursday, November 4th.

I’m not going to arrive until late Thursday night. How can I check in for the Conference?
The registration table will be out for the duration of the Conference! Just come see Executive Office staff on Friday morning before the first presentation begins to check in.

What should I wear?
All our events require business casual dress except the Mock Trial Captains' Meeting and the Purple & Gold Party, which have no dress code (though you are encouraged to wear purple and gold at the party, it is not required. There will be lots of food, music, and even games so feel free to dress casually). Many students dress in cocktail attire for the Saturday evening banquet, but it is NOT required. If you're questioning the appropriateness of any item of clothing, it's best to leave it at home.

How do I participate in the Mock Trial Competition?
Students may participate in Mock Trial as part of a chapter’s team. Teams are composed of 4 students. All competitors on the team must be a part of the same chapter and must be members of P.A.D.

Chapters may register a team in the Mock Trial section of the Pre-Law Conference event page.

Do I have to attend the conference to compete in Mock Trial?
Yes, you must register for the Conference to compete in Mock Trial. Additionally, you must attend all events, speakers and workshops you are assigned to. Teams and/or team members found to be skipping Conference events will have points docked from their final scores.

How much does Mock Trial cost?
The mock trial registration fee is $175 per team of four. This fee is in addition to the Conference fee of $300 for each member.

What is the deadline to register for Mock Trial?
All mock trial teams must be registered by September 30th.

I am registering a team for my chapter. Do I need to know who all our team members are when I register the team?
No, you do not, since only the chapter name must be provided during registration. However, all team members’ names, contact information, and emergency contact information must be submitted to Competition Director Emily Baranoski at by October 14, 2020.

How many teams participate in the Competition? How many teams can my chapter send?
We accept 12 teams into the Competition. Chapters may send up to two teams. Teams are registered on a first come, first served basis.

Can I bring a coach or an alternate?
Yes! Any coach or alternate that is also a student must register for the Conference as well.

I have a question about the Mock Trial Case. Who should I send my questions to?
All participants will get the opportunity to ask the Competition Case Coordinator questions about the case. Questions must be emailed to Competition Director Emily Baranoski at by October 14, 2020. Questions will be answered as a group and the answers will be sent to all teams before teams arrive on November 4th.

Anything else I should know about Pre-Law Conference?
Remember, at the Conference you are not only representing your chapter and school, you are also representing P.A.D. Be courteous to hotel guests and staff and keep volume to a minimum during quiet hours.

As a chapter representative, you are expected to attend all scheduled Conference events. Please remember to be respectful of Conference speakers by turning your cell phones off or to silent and refraining from chatting with other Conference attendees during presentations.

Don’t forget to have some fun with your fellow P.A.D. members and make meaningful memories along the way!

I have a question that’s not on this list – who should I talk to?
Contact Pre-Law Operations Coordinator Liz Dunlap at or by calling the Executive Office during office hours, Monday-Friday 9am-5pm EST at (410) 347-3118.

Our Mission

Phi Alpha Delta is the world’s preeminent law fraternity because of our dedication to service: service to the student, the school, the profession, and the community.

It is through devotion to the ideals of Integrity, Compassion, Courage, Professionalism, Service, Diversity, and Innovation that we better both our profession and our community. Through accepting our differences we become not just a law fraternity, but a family.