Is It The Perfect Career for You?

Today, law is one of the most sought after professions in the country. It is an enormous responsibility and a serious undertaking in terms of commitment to time. Before taking up this career path, it is important to know the profession well enough to make an informed decision.

The Indian legal profession is one of the largest in the world and plays a crucial role in the world’s largest democracy. Our legal system forms the fulcrum on which the harmony of the society rests. Lawyers play a pivotal role in linking this legal system to every aspect of our society in several ways. Being a lawyer or being associated with legal services is a prestigious occupation.  From helping a client in patenting a trade secret to setting up legal counsel for large conglomerates and devising trial strategies for a huge merger, the job is intellectually challenging. 

Depending upon the requirement of the role, lawyers are analysts, innovative thinkers, and problem solvers whose intelligence is crucial for a successful career in law enforcement.

The career scope for students of law is enormous and varied. Every option is as challenging and interesting as the next and will require a careful analysis of your interests to match with the right one in the legal services. Your role in the legal system will depend on your choice of specialization and position. The legal profession boasts of hard-working individuals who hold a pride of position as those who help people in need of legal counsel.

Industry Snapshot

India’s legal sector is the world’s second largest with more than 6 lakh lawyers in well over 500 legal practices nationwide. A whole new legal profession is emerging in India with the legal firms looking overseas for participation in major international deals and partnerships to enhance their brand image. Several large and mid-sized law firms are expanding their reach by acquiring smaller firms to establish a pan-India presence.

Government led reforms and India’s consumption led economy should help law firms to prosper despite a few concerns like challenges in managing talent, creation and implementation of business strategies etc that hinder the progress of the profession. The recent years have seen a rise in the ‘first generation lawyers’ effectively ending the tradition of law as a family-run profession. Vast improvement in the Indian legal education due to the emergence of more national and international law schools has resulted in better-trained lawyers in the legal system. Rising literacy levels has given birth to greater awareness of individual rights and a corresponding increase in lawsuits. The prospects of the Indian legal industry in the upcoming years are pretty strong. 

Nature of Work

Lawyers serve as both Advocates and Advisers. As Advocates, they speak for their clients in court by presenting supportive evidence. As Advisers, they counsel their clients on their Legal rights and obligations. Lawyers—also called Attorneys and Counselors—can interpret laws, apply laws to specific situations, and draft new laws. Representing a client and advising them on their legal situation is all in a day’s work for a Lawyer. From individual cases of whole companies, from court proceedings to small disputes behind closed doors, it’s your job to act in your client's best interest.

Not just stuck in a courtroom, Lawyers can work on Criminal or Civil Lawsuits, so a variety of jobs can crop up. One day you're representing a client in court, the next you could be finalizing a divorce, drawing up a will or just advising on minor Legal issues.

Your daily tasks will depend on your client’s needs and whether you’re specialized in a particular area of Law, but you could be doing some or all of the following: 

  • Attending court hearings (and doing the preparation beforehand).
  • Drawing up contracts and other legal documents. 
  • Negotiating (not all cases will end up in court).
  • Explaining the law and giving general legal advice. 
  • Settling disputes and supervising any agreements.
  • Researching and gathering evidence.
  • Analyzing Legal documents.
  • Supervising Legal assistants.

Skills Required

Below are the list of skills that you should have for this profession.

  • Possess appropriate depth of Legal knowledge
  • Sound research skills
  • Technological competency
  • Good drafting skills
  • Lateral thinking ability
  • Good client manners       
  • Analytical and problem solving ability
  • Critical reading
  • Smart business thinking & skills
  • Oral communication and listening skills 

Different Disciplines of Law Enforcement, Investigative & Legal Services

It is a good idea to learn about the various types of Law practices well before you decide to submit Law school applications. Educating yourself in this area should be part of your career exploration process. 

  • Administrative Law
  • Agricultural Law
  • Animal Law
  • Civil Law
  • Constitutional Law
  • Consumer Law
  • Corporate Law
  • Criminal Law
  • Cyber Law
  • Employment Law
  • Entertainment Law
  • Family Law
  • Income Tax Law
  • Intellectual property Law
  • International Law
  • Labor Law
  • Marine Law
  • Patent Law
  • Real Estate Law
  • Sports Law
  • Taxation & Insurance Laws
  • Tax Law

Want to explore any specific discipline in particular? Click on it. There are more courses available in the College Search page.

Education

Any student who is from any stream of graduation can get admission in a Law college. He/she has two options to choose from. A student can do an integrated course of 5 years after their 11th and 12th or a 3 year course after his/her graduation.

After 10th

A student has to complete his/her 11th & 12th from any stream depending on their individual field of interest. Also, they must start preparing for Law entrance exams. 

After 12th

In India, to become a Lawyer, you have to possess a Bachelors degree in Law (L.L.B.) duly recognized by the Bar Council of India. There are two types of degree courses offered in Law in India. One is a 5-year course and another one is a 3-year course.

Option 1

Five-year course

  • Qualification- 10 +2 with minimum of 50% marks.
  • Age: Not more than 20 years.
  • For an undergraduate program, there are eleven National Law Universities that conduct a common entrance test for Bachelors in Law known as Common Law Admission Test (CLAT). Some other universities conduct their own admission tests. Some of them are Symbiosis Entrance Test conducted by the Symbiosis campus, NLU Delhi Admission Test conducted by NLU Delhi and NLU Orissa Admission Test conducted by NLU Orissa. Some universities accept the LSAT scores, which is are test-scores for LSAT India, conducted by the LSAC (Law School Admission Council). Then there are state level entrance tests for Law College Dehradun, Dehradun, MATS Law School, MATS University, Raipur, The ICFAI Law School, The ICFAI University, Dehradun, etc.

Option 2

Three year course

  • Qualification- Bachelor’s degree with minimum of 50% marks.
  • No age limit.
  • There are very few universities currently that offer a 3 year course. Some of them are Delhi University based in Delhi and Banaras Hindu University based in Varanasi. They conduct their own entrance examinations. Some colleges accept students based purely on merit.

There are concessions in the eligibility criteria for students belonging to SC and ST category.

Career Prospects & Job opportunities

There is a plethora of opportunities for a Law graduate. While the majority of Law graduates practice Law in traditional environments, an increasing number are using their degree to gain entry into careers in sectors as diverse as Politics, International, finance, Sports, Diplomacy, Health, the Media & Environment protection. There are many types of Legal practices and organizations employing Lawyers.

One can either practice as an Advocate in a court of Law or work with corporate firms. By clearing exams conducted by the Public Service Commissions, a Law graduate can become a Judge. After gaining experience, a Law graduate can hope to become Solicitor General, a Public Prosecutor or offer services to government departments and ministries. One can also work as a Legal adviser for various organizations. Teaching in colleges, working with NGOs and working as a reporter for newspapers and television channels are other attractive options.

Core Legal Careers

  • Lawyer (also called Attorney, Counselor, Solicitor, Barrister, Advocate)
  • ParaLegal (also called Legal Assistant)
  • Legal Secretary (also called Administrative Assistant or Legal Assistant)

  Types of Legal Careers

      Examples

  Legal & Administrative Support

  1. Legal Assistant
  2. File Clerk

  Litigation Support

  1. Hybrid Paralegal
  2. E-Discovery Professional
  3. Practice Support Professional

  Courtroom

  1. Judge
  2. Magistrate
  3. Law Clerk

  Court Reporting

  1. Court Reporter (also called Stenographer)
  2. Broadcast Captioner
  3. CART Provider (Communication Access Real-time Translation)

  Legal Consulting

  1. Legal Nurse Consultant
  2. Trial Technology Consultant

  Legal Publishing

  1. Legal Publisher
  2. Legal Writer
  3. Legal Editor

  Legal Administration

  1. Law Firm Administrator
  2. Contract Administrator
  3. Law Firm Marketer

  Courthouse

  1. Courtroom Deputy
  2. Court Administrator
  3. Court Interpreter

  Legal Education

  1. Law Professor
  2. Law School Dean
  3. Law School Admissions Officer

  Intellectual Property

  1. Patent Attorney
  2. IP Docketing Specialist
  3. Patent Designer & Illustrator

  Political System

  1. Attorney General
  2. District Attorney
  3. Legislator

  Miscellaneous

  1. Compliance Specialist
  2. Conflicts Analyst

 

Angels and Demons

Pros

  • Every day is a new day.
  • It gives you Self-satisfaction while working for society or a cause.
  • One of the best paid professions.

Cons

  • The profession is demanding.
  • You will have long and stretched working hours.
  • It is a skill based job; you need to acquire logical reasoning, investigative ability and convincing power to excel.

SSC CGL
SSC CGL Tier 1 Exam -1st Aug to 20th Aug, 2017; Tier 2 Exam - 10th to 11th Nov, 2017; Tier 2 Exam - 21st Jan, 2018