I had three of my professors submit letter of recommendations four years ago. I have been pushing law school off for that amount of time. Do you think I need to submit more contemporary recommendations? Thank you in advance.
I think a lot of it depends on the caliber of school you are attending. Other than the very, very top schools, the vast majority of the rest make their decision almost entirely based on LSAT and GPA. Frankly, I don't think a lot of them even look at personal statements and/or LORs, unless maybe a student is basically tied with another few students for a few remaining seats. Even then, honestly, I doubt that it comes down to LORs in the vast majority of cases.
It has been a long time since I attended school. I can only think of one professor who probably really remembers me. I asked him for an LOR and he sent one. The other one, I got from a professional contact I had worked with for a few years.
Even when I was basically still in school, it was awkward to ask for an LOR because even in classes where I was at or near the top in terms of grades, I almost never visited the prof during office hours, etc. They really didn't know me other than by my grade in a class or two. Most were very obliging when I asked for an LOR, though. They do the best they can.
Again, maybe if you're applying to the very top schools, where the selection is very competitive, and you need to distinguish yourself from a sea of similar candidates, then the LORs might come into play. Maybe if you're on the bubble, fighting for one of the last few seats in class in other schools, who knows.
Otherwise, I just don't think they matter at all. Get them from a supervisor at work or something.