Danielle Early and Mike Spivey speak for 30 minutes on application submission timing. And a bit more below from Michigan Law Dean of Admissions Sarah Zearfoss.
Here is Dean Z.:
"Totally agree that before Thanksgiving is “early” in any school’s universe. All law school admissions officers are hitting the bricks from mid-September to mid-November; some offices are structured in a way that allows them to make some decisions despite the travel schedule, but the number of offers are a mere pittance compared to the overall number that will be made. People who don’t have their applications in when they start hearing about early September acceptances might feel dismayed, and worry that by the time they apply, nothing will be left—but that’s not even close to true. In general, I would advise people to try to get their applications in before the 1st of the year, simply because most people apply after that, creating a bottleneck. That means your outcome might be slowed down, which will be anxiety producing, but it doesn’t mean you’ll not get admitted because your application is somehow fatally “late.”
Remember, too, that some schools take a lot of care with their applications. If you want to be judged on factors apart from/in addition to your LSAT and UGPA, then try to have some patience with the fact that those holistic processes are necessarily time intensive.
It’s all good practice for being a lawyer. Judges take a lot of time about issuing their opinions, and seem not to take into account that the lawyer submitted a kick-ass brief and did a stellar oral argument."
And the podcast: