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How To Become A Lawyer In India

India has a Common Law system and becoming a lawyer in India has a number of similarities with other countries with Common Law legal systems, such as Canada, Australia and England

Once you have qualified as a lawyer in India you will be able to work in a fascinating profession and command a good salary.

Salaries of Legal Professionals in India 

Salaries of lawyers in India

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How to become a lawyer in IndiaHere are the various steps you will need to take to become a lawyer in India.

Gain A Law Degree 

The first step is to gain an undergraduate law degree or more commonly known in India as an LLB. There are a large number of universities and law schools offering LLBs in India and you must ensure that your LLB course is recognised by the Bar Council of India. If you already have a law degree gained outside of India or another undergraduate degree, then there are other options available. 

3 or 5 year LLB? 

Students coming fresh from school to study the law will undertake the five-year integrated law degree and this is the most popular way to complete a law degree in India. This is a combination of law and other related subjects such as history, business studies, political science, economics and the arts. If you already have an undergraduate degree of at least three years in length, then you can undertake the LLB in three years instead and study pure law. 

Admissions Test 

To gain entry to law school in India you must pass an admissions test. These are national standardised tests rather than being specific to any one law school. The most common is the Common Law Admissions Test (CLAT), however, there are others including the Law School Admissions Test (LSAT) that is taken by students across the US, Canada and Australia. Some of these admissions tests have age restrictions, such as the requirement to be under 20 years old for the CLAT, but not all of them do. All of the tests include a section on English language skills. It is not unusual for students to undertake more than one admissions test to prove their competence and understanding to the admissions teams at different law schools. 

Internship 

The internship should be arranged through your law school and this will vary in length. Most students will use the extensive networks of contacts they have gained throughout their course to gain relevant experience in the field of law they wish to practice in. 

Internationally Trained Lawyers 

The Bar Council of India recognises a number of international law school's law degrees as a qualification to apply to the Bar. If you have an international law degree from a law school that is not recognised by the Bar Council of India, then you should apply to them anyway as each case is accessed on the applicant's individual situation. Otherwise, you will have to complete the three-year LLB course at an institution recognised by the Bar Council of India. There are currently no distance learning courses that are recognised by the Bar Council of India. 

Becoming an Advocate 

Once you have completed your law degree you are qualified to work as a legal professional, however, if you wish to appear in court, you must pass the State Bar Exam and receive a provisional licence to practice the law. Then you must pass the All India Bar Examination and only then will you receive your five-year licence to practice law in India. 

Specialisation 

Many students go on to specialise in a specific area of the law by including a masters course in their career plans. It is not unusual for law students to go on to complete an LLM or a Masters of Business Law or a Postgraduate Diploma to improve their chances of securing work in the area of the law that interests them the most. 

Table source 

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