The Netherlands is well-known for having one of the best educational systems in Europe and the world. Dutch universities offer top-quality legal education and research known for topping off the charts of major academic league tables. Most Dutch law schools offer a range of law degree programs taught in both Dutch and English mediums so that communication won’t be a problem for international students.

Studying law in the Netherlands will allow students to have in-depth knowledge on the basic principles of European and international law; acquire advanced knowledge and understanding in Business Law, Air & Space Law, Public Governance, Politics, Economics, etc. Students may also experience studying law in an international university for specific courses or dual-degree programs.

Today we will be discussing some of the best law schools in the Netherlands.

Top Law Schools in the Netherlands

1. Leiden University

  • Law Program Link
  • Degrees offered: Bachelor of Laws, Master of Laws, and Doctor of Laws

Leiden University (LU) is a world-class public research university in Leiden, Netherlands. It is the oldest university in the country, founded in 1575 by Prince William of Orange. For over 450 years, the university has grown to have a solid international reputation for its academic excellence, subject rankings, and students satisfaction. It is globally ranked in the top 112 by the 2022 QS World University Rankings.

The university is well-known for its outbreaking performance in natural sciences, life sciences, medicine, social sciences, international law, astronomy, classics & ancient history, politics, archaeology, anthropology, history, pharmacology, public policy, etc. Moreover, it is the only Dutch university with the most number of award winners; twenty-one Spinoza Prize Laureates and sixteen Nobel Laureates.

Law at Leiden University ranks 1st in the Netherlands and 24th worldwide, according to the 2021 Times Higher Education Rankings by Subject. The Law School offers a Bachelor of Law program with specialization subjects taught in the Dutch language. It also has a range of advanced Master’s (LLM) and MSc programs including, a Master’s degree in Air and Space Law, Comparative Criminal Justice, European and International Business Law, European and International Human Rights Law, European Law, International Children’s Rights, International Civil and Commercial Law, International Criminal Law, etc. Additionally, it also offers doctorate study and training in specific law subjects.

2. University of Amsterdam

The University of Amsterdam (UvA) is one of the globally top-leading public research universities located in Amsterdam, Netherlands. It is the third-oldest university in the Netherlands which, was founded in 1632. The university ranks 1st in the country and 55th worldwide according to the 2022 QS World University Rankings. For over 300 years, it is recognized internationally for its high academic standing, cutting-edge research, and broad global university network. Additionally, its membership with associations of European and international universities including, the League of European Research Universities (LERU), the Institutional Network of the Universities from the Capitals of Europe (UNICA), European University Association (EUA), and Universitas 21, ensures its students to experience a diverse and international learning community.

Law at the University of Amsterdam ranks second in the Netherlands according to Times Higher Education. It is well-known for offering a wide range of LLM degree courses including, a joint LLM program in International Criminal Law with Columbia University School of Law. The law school also offers an English-taught undergraduate law degree program which, is known as in Politics, Psychology, Law and Economics (PPLE); and postgraduate research for a Ph.D. in law.

3. Maastricht University

  • Law Program Link
  • Degrees offered: Bachelor of Laws, Master of Laws, and Doctor of Laws

Maastricht University (UM) is a top modern and public research university located in Maastricht, Netherlands. It was established in 1976 and became the second-youngest university in the country. It is well-known for having the largest international student body among all Dutch universities. The university was also the only one of the two Dutch universities recognized by the Accreditation Organisation of the Netherlands and Flanders (NVAO) for its strong international reputation and excellence in addressing global issues through research and innovative learning.

Maastricht University has one of the best law schools in the Netherlands. In fact, its Faculty of Law ranks 3rd in Europe and 23rd worldwide in the 2022 Times Higher Education World Ranking. The Faculty offers a Dutch-taught undergraduate program including, Bachelor’s in Dutch Law and Bachelor’s in Tax Law as well as European Law in English medium. It also offers a range of postgraduate degree programs including, 8 Master’s courses, each with specialization subjects; two advanced Master’s programs including, Advanced Master Intellectual Property Law and Knowledge Management (LLM/MSc) and Advanced Master in Privacy, Cybersecurity, Data Management, and Leadership; and a Ph.D. in Law.

4. Tilburg university

  • Law Program Link
  • Degrees Offered: Bachelor of Laws, Master of Laws, and Doctor of Laws

Tilburg University is a top public research university located in the beautiful countryside of Tilburg, Netherlands. It has one of the most beautiful campuses set in vegetative land and wooden areas. The university is known for its excellence in social and behavioral sciences, economics, law, business sciences, theology, and humanities. Additionally, it also has one of the largest international student populations which, gradually grows every year among all Dutch universities.

Tilburg Law School is known as the Top International Law School, garnering the highest rankings from the American Social Science Research Network (SSRN). It was also ranked as top 1 in the Netherlands by Elsevier Magazine for three consecutive years since 2012-2015. In the 2021 Times Higher Education Subject Rankings, law at Tilburg University placed in the top 28th for overall performance in legal education and research.

The Law School offers five undergraduate programs including, one English-taught program in Bachelors in Global Law. It also has a range of postgraduate degree programs including, 8 English-taught Master’s degrees in International Business Law, European Law & Global Risk, International Law and Global Governance, Law and Technology, International Business Taxation, track International Business Tax Law, Labour Law and Employment Relations, and MSc Public Governance. This top law school also offers three to four years of Ph.D. degree through legal research or dissertation.

5. University of Groningen

The University of Groningen (UG) is one of the top public research universities in Europe located in Groningen, Netherlands. Since its establishment in 1614, the university enjoys a rich and long tradition of providing academic excellence to individuals across the globe. It is also known for its outstanding international quality of teaching, research, and innovation. In 2020, the university ranked third in the Netherlands and 77th worldwide according to the combined rankings from major academic league tables.

The Faculty of Law at the University of Groningen is one of the best law schools in the Netherlands. It is also one of the largest and most internationally-recognized faculties in the country. It offers a Bachelor’s or LLB degree in International and European Law for students wishing to practice law in an international environment. It also has seven pre-LLM programs and seven LLM programs in English. These include the Faculty’s top-rated LLM courses in Energy and Climate Law, International Human Rights Law, and Public International Law. The Faculty also offers a wide range of legal research programs.


I hope this article on the best law schools in the Netherlands was helpful. Make sure to also check out the Available Law Programs for International Students!

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