CLAT, Common Law Admission Test is a national level entrance exam conducted to admit law aspirants to BA LLB and LLM courses at the National Law Universities. LSAT India, on the other hand, is the Law School Admission Test conducted by Pearson VUE on behalf of LSAC India. Over 70 colleges accept LSAT scores to give admission to eligible students to BA LLB and LLM programs.

The major differences between CLAT and LSAT India exams are:

  • CLAT applicants solve 150 questions in 2 hours’ time, candidates appearing in LSAT India have to solve 115 questions in 2 hours and 55 minutes.
  • Via CLAT scores, candidates are admitted to limited law courses, including BA LLB, BBA LLB and LLM courses, while LSAT India offers 3-year LLB and other law courses.
  • Marking scheme in CLAT states negative marking of 0.25 marks for each wrong question, whereas, no marks are deducted for wrong answers in LSAT India.

Differences between CLAT and LSAT

Parameters CLAT LSAT
Conducting Body Consortium of National Law Universities Pearson VUE
Exam Level National Level exam National Level Exam
Programs Offered 5 -year Integrated LLB and LLM 3-Year LLB, 5-year LLB, and LLM
Participating Institutes 22 NLUs, 3 PSUs 83 law institutes
Frequency of Exam Once a year Once a year
Eligibility UG- 10+2 certificate with 45% Marks PG - LLB degree with 55% marks BA LLB - 45% Marks in 10+2 examination LLB- A bachelor’s degree with 45% aggregate marks LLM - A law graduate student

To get admission to National Law Universities in India, candidates must appear for the CLAT exam. However, those who wish to get into law colleges in India and abroad can appear in LSAT India. The major difference between CLAT and LSAT India are:

  • Eligibility: CLAT aspirants must have 45% marks in higher secondary certificate to get through UG courses and 55% marks in law degree for PG courses. 

BA LLB aspirants must have 10+2 certificates with 45% aggregate marks to appear in LSAT India exam. Similarly, for LLB and LLM courses, they must have a bachelor’s degree and a law degree respectively.

  • Participating Institutes: 22 NLUs and 3 PSUs accept CLAT scores, while the LSAT India score is accepted at approximately 83 law colleges.
  • Exam Fee: CLAT exam fee for general category applicants is INR 4000 (INR 3500 for reserved category), whereas LSAT India application fee is INR 3800 (INR 4250 with LSAT India Handbook).

CLAT vs LSAT Nature of Exams

CLAT vs LSAT India is one of the most difficult choices for law aspirants in the country. Both the exams are highly prestigious and hold equal relevance. However, there are major differences that the two possess, exam pattern being one of them. Have a look at the comparison below to understand the exam scheme for CLAT and LSAT India.

Particulars CLAT LSAT India
Mode of Examination Offline Offline
Exam Duration 2 hours 2 hours minutes
Types of Questions Objective and Descriptive Questions Objective Questions (with 4 or 5 options), and Descriptive Questions

Subject-Wise Weightage

 The subject-wise weightage including number of questions and marking scheme of CLAT and LSAT India exams are as follows: 

Particulars CLAT LSAT India
Number of Questions BA LLB - 150 MCQ LLM - 100 MCQ, 2 Descriptive Questions 115 Questions
Marking Scheme UG - 1 mark each for every correct answer, negative marking of 0.25 marks for each wrong answer. PG - 1 mark each for correct answer, negative marking of 0.25 marks for each wrong answer, and 25 marks each for 2 subjective questions. Scores between 420 and 480, a score band, along with percentile rank, no negative marking

Difficulty Level of CLAT vs LSAT

When it comes to measuring the difficulty levels in CLAT vs LSAT India debate, there are different sets of challenges. Both the exams are moderate to highly difficult. 

CLAT is considered as one of the most difficult law exams in India, whereas, LSAT is comparatively easier. However, LSAT India has a global recognition as it is conducted by Pearson VUE to determine qualitative abilities of the candidates. 

Another contributing factor to CLAT exam’s difficulty level is that the students are given two hours to answer 150 questions that are asked from a wide range of topics. Moreover, the negative marking adds on to its difficulty levels. 

On the other hand, for LSAT India, candidates have 2 hours and 55 minutes to answer 115 questions without the pressure of negative marking. But the conducting body has added a new ‘variables section’ which is unscored yet and the questions are unidentifiable as of now. 

CLAT vs LSAT Competition Level 

Since CLAT scores enable a candidate’s entry to the National Law Universities in India, the competition is quite high. As per the last year’s data, for 2500 vacant seats, 50,000 applicants appeared for the exam. 

LSAT has global prominence and is gradually gaining importance for law aspirants across the nation. Last year more than 50 law colleges came under the fold of LSAT India and some of the top law colleges have associated themselves with it. 


Can I get extra sheets or papers for calculations and rough work in the exam?

Yes, the students who will appear in the exam hall to write the paper shall get the sheets for calculations or rough work by the invigilators themselves. So, candidates are advised not to carry any kind of papers/notebooks, etc with them in the paper

Are there any items which are banned in the CLAT exam hall?

Yes, there are many times which are not permitted in the exam center. Read the following for the same:

  • Electronic Devices (Mobile Phones/Laptops/Bluetooth/Pager/Health Band/Camera, etc)
  • Metallic Items
  • Stationery Items (Pens/Pencil/Notebooks/Textual Material/Books/Chits/Calculator, etc.)
  • Jewelry Items (all sorts)
  • Watches

How does the allotment of NLUs happen through CLAT?

While applying for CLAT, every candidate is required to submit the preference of the National Law Universities. The preference matching to the rank of the candidate is considered while allotting the National Law University. Apart from domicile, gender, caste category is also considered as each NLU has different seat allocation for each category of student.

What is the mode of CLAT 2020 Exam?

The CLAT 2020 Exam is conducted in online mode at different test cities. This year, the Consortium is also taking extra precautions for the conduction of the exam. 

What is the age eligibility condition to apply for CLAT 2020?

There is no upper age limit applicable to anyone who wants to apply for the exam. This practice has been started in the year 2016. The lower age limit has to be 20 years old and for the candidates who belong to SC/ST and PhD (Physically Disabled) categories, the lower age limit is 22 years old.

What are the changes introduced in CLAT 2020?

There are a few changes introduced in CLAT Exam that are listed below

  1. The total number of questions in the CLAT Exam has been changed to 150.
  2. The new exam pattern is designed as per class 12 student's mental ability and understanding.
  3. In GK & Current Affairs Section previously only current affairs was asked but now it will include both General Knowledge and Current Affairs.
  4. Previously Legal Aptitude was removed from the exam pattern but now it is added back with the same number of questions. 
  5. In Maths Section, only bar graph and tabulation were included but now class 10 Maths is included for 10 marks only.
  6. In the English Section, vocabulary was removed but now it is not yet announced whether it would be included or not.
  7. The Logical Reasoning section has no change