Law as a career is historically regarded as a very respectable and lucrative one. One can pursue law as his/her career after clearing the plus two board exam. Aspirants will have to take the Common Law Admission Test (CLAT) and do a 5 year B.A LL.B course from one of the 16 National Law Universities (NLUs). However, NLU Delhi doesn’t take students on the basis of the CLAT exam); one has to clear AILET conducted by NLU, Delhi for admission in the institute. ILS Pune and GLC Mumbai admit students on the basis of their class 12 exam results.
Those willing to do a course in law after graduation can enrol to a three year law course. Delhi University’s Faculty of Law offers the best three year course in our country. Candidates have to clear the entrance exams conducted by the department to get enrolled. The NLUs however, do not provide three year law courses.
To secure entry to the best of the National Law Schools including NLSIU Bangalore, NALSAR Hyderabad, NUJS Kolkata, NLU Jodhpur, NLIU Bhopal and GNLU Gandhinagar – one has to crack CLAT (Common Law Admission Test. Candidates who take a career in law very seriously consider CLAT as important as IIT-JEE.
CLAT is a two hour teat and the paper is objective and MCQ based. The structure of the test includes – English: 40 marks; Logical Reasoning: 40 marks; Legal Aptitude (legal reasoning and legal GK): 50 marks; General Knowledge: 50 marks and Mathematics: 20 marks.
The language is English and candidates must possess excellent English language skills to perform well. Preparing for CLAT is a rigorous exercise and a lot of reading is advisable. One can start with easier texts and move to the more complex ones. Reading helps develop one’s ability to think, write and analyse in English.
Other Entrance Tests
In addition to CLAT, LSAT India has now gained recognition as a standard entrance test for law aspirants. Some well-known private law colleges use LSAT India for admitting students.
SET (Symbiosis Entrance Test) is the doorway to Symbiosis Law School, Pune, Symbiosis, Noida or Symbiosis, Hyderabad.
Best law Schools/Colleges in India
Here are the best National Law Schools/Colleges:
GLC, Mumbai and ILS Pune are also well-known as law colleges. GLC Mumbai has the extra benefit of location enabling its students do after-college internships. Symbiosis Law School, Pune is another excellent option as well.
What’s the Bar Exam
After the completion of course, law graduates have to take the All India Bar Exam which is a qualification exam required to be eligible to practice law in India. It is an open book exam. Though very easy to pass, records say that nearly 30% of the candidates who take the test fail it. This does not speak well of the standard of legal education in the country.
To be a lawyer one must possess the skill to read and understand ‘tough texts’. The words and sentences used in the law discourses are known to be long and complex. The ability to think logically comes next. A lawyer must also be a good writer as he/she needs to write a lot.
Finally, the aptitude to speak logically is extremely essential. Lawyers need to communicate unambiguously with colleagues, clients, judges, opposition lawyers and other individuals. However, the notion that lawyers have to be natural public speaker/debater is not true.
Speaking wisely and wittily, is all that is required, while one’s debating skills can be handy while litigating which is just a part of law as a career.
Some of the well known work domains in law are:
Corporate law (law firms and companies)
Intellectual Property law firms
Alternative Dispute Resolution
NGOs and Think Tanks,
Judge Advocate General,
Being a ‘part of justice being done’ is the greatest take away for law as a career. However, the career will not disappoint the young aspirants in terms of remuneration as well. Large law firms in India, including – Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas, Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas, AZB, Jyoti Sagar Associates (JSA), Trilegal, Khaitan and Company, Luthra and Luthra pay handsomely to freshers, which is often more than 1 lakh a month.
Banks like the ICICI bank also pay in equal measures. The tier two firms such as Desai and Diwanji, Nishith Desai Associates (NDA), Wadia Ghandy and Co., Kochhar and Co., Bharucha Partners etc. pay between Rs. 40,000/month and Rs. 80,000/month.
Starters practicing litigation under a senior lawyer can make around Rs. 15,000 per month. The average earnings an LPO job is around Rs. 15,000 (average) per month as well.