A lot of thoughts may arise in your mind when you think about choosing law as a career. Do you also have queries in your mind about the law? Well, to answer all your queries, doubts, and myths about law, we have come up with this detailed explanation. 

Based on the discussion with Harsh Gagrani (director of LegalEdge, a pioneer in law coaching), this post shall answer the most commonly asked questions about the law as a career. 

So, read through the post completely to know which law entrance exam to take up, how would be life in law school, career after the law, and more.

Trend of Choosing Law as a Career

In the past before 1987, to become a layer you had to join BA or B.Com after 12th and later join LLB degree to pursue law course. There wasn't any entrance exam earlier, however after 1987 Prof N.R.Madhav Menon bought a concept of merging B.A. and LLB to form a separate 3-years degree specific to law - BA LLB (Hons). 

This new degree is for a duration of 5 years and which as initially introduced in NLSIU Bangalore, known as the top law college in the country. Later, many other law schools followed the same concept of 5 year BA LLB degree. 

Currently, both 3 years and 5-year law degree exist but very few choose a law degree after pursuing a BA. 

Law Entrance Exams

To pursue a degree in law, you need to appear for law entrance exams conducted every year. There are various entrance exams for law courses out of which the top two exams are explained below. By follow expert suggestions and tricks, you can have a smooth Law Entrance Exam Preparation

CLAT (Common Law Admission Test)

  • CLAT Exam is the top-most entrance exam for UG and PG courses. 
  • It is conducted by the consortium of National Law Universities across India. You can get admission into any of the 22 NLUs.
  • This is an offline mode of exam but currently, it is conducted in online mode. 
  • The question paper includes a total of 150 questions. There are five sections: Logical Reasoning, Legal Aptitude, Quantitative Aptitude, English language, Current Affairs & General Knowledge.

clat mock test

clat Mock test

AILET

  • AILET Exam is also a national-level exam conducted by NLU Delhi for admission into UG and PG courses.
  • There are a total of 5 sections included in this exam: Logical Reasoning, Legal Aptitude, Quantitative Aptitude, English language, Current Affairs & General Knowledge.
  • The question paper consists of 150 questions. The total time duration of the exam is 1 hour 30 minutes. 

Other Law Entrance Exams

  • Symbiosis Law Admission Test - Conducted for admission into Symbiosis Pune, Noida, Hyderabad.
  • Maharashtra Common Law Entrance Test 
  • Law School Admission Test

Life in Law School

After you get admission to any of the law schools across India, you need to study BA LLB (Hons) for 5 years. Along with academics, there are various co-curricular and extracurricular activities. 

  • In these five years, you study all the laws present in academics. You might be aware of a few but you will study in-depth all the laws in your academics.
  • In co-curricular and extra-curricular activities you can experience the real court known as mooting. 
  • The room is designed as a real courtroom. You are given a situation or case and you are judged practically here. 
  • Not only the theory, but you also need to be strong in your practicals. 
  • Next is client counseling which lets you experience the counseling for clients. 
  • Article writing is another activity that is trained during the 5-year course along with academics. 
  • Debating is also an activity that can be experienced in the course. Depending on the situation, your debating skill is tested.
  • Mediation is slightly different from the court. Out of the court, this mediation happens. Two parties come to you and you need to solve the situation.
  • An internship is a must for law students. You can go to law firms, NGOs, or any other law-related office for understanding the work.

Career after Law

Here are few prominent careers have chosen after pursuing a law degree. There are many more chosen, but most commonly students tend to have their career in these. 

  • Litigation: You can start practice from the lower courts or higher courts. Most of the students choose lower courts as their preference.
  • Judicial Services: If not practice, you can go to judicial services. Judge post has a lot of pride and honour. Know more about Judiciary Exams.
  • Corporate Law: Here you working for a big firm. You handle all the law issues, litigations associated with the company. You can earn more from the first month but the job is hectic.
  • Civil Services: You need to clear UPSC, state-wise PSC to join in civil services. You need to be well versed with all the laws to clear the entrance exams. 
  • Academia: You can also work in research papers (Ph.D.), academics, writing books. Around 10-15% take-up core academics.
  • Legal Process Outsourcing: Other countries give work to outsourcing as they charge less amount comparatively. 
  • Entrepreneurship: Many of you can open your companies. It depends on self-satisfaction. 

Law as a Career - Myth vs Reality

  1. There is a lot of reading involved in law: This is a myth revolving around law courses, but in reality, the law involves a minimal amount of reading and researching. Just by seeing the books behind a lawyer, you may come to the conclusion that law involves a lot of reading. But, this is not true. A lawyer does read for their cases and make arguments, but this is almost in all careers like Engineering or Medicine. Even they do involve reading. Reading doesn't mean for life long but it enhances your skills and improves knowledge about the subject. Thus, if you wish to Become a Lawyer, then you must like reading. 
  2. You need to have huge argument skills: This is not true. You need to make to the point argument, not lame points which are meaningless. Arguments involve speaking at the right time, a fact-based argument with correct evidence. If you think you are good at arguing at home, then it is not in the case of a lawyer. 
  3. Lawyers always spend time outside the court without any job: Well, in the current generation this is not the situation. We have come a long way in the journey of law as a career. As soon as completing the degree, law students work in higher courts, go towards corporate law, work in MNCs. This is the reality. 
  4. Only Humanities stream students take up Law: This is another most common myth. But, any student who is interested in this field can take up law as their course. In fact every year, 30-40% are from Humanities, 30-40% from commerce, and 20% from Science background. Law doesn't have connections with the stream. Anyone with an interest can choose this career. 
  5. Don't go by any movie and think lawyers do this kind of job. You can watch real-time videos of how a lawyer works or you can seek expert suggestions about the career to know more in detail if you have any doubts. 

Salary of a Lawyer

Any career chosen in law has its own responsibilities and payscale. A lawyer is one of the most opted careers. Salary or payscale is definitely one of the common questions running in your mind. Well, the salary of a lawyer varies according to specialization and experience. To give you an idea of the salary range, the below table shows the pay scale of lawyers at different levels:

Job Profile Starting Salary per annum (in INR) Mid Level Salary per annum (in INR) Senior Level Salary per annum (INR)
Lawyer/ Attorney ₹1,56,000 ₹4,68,000 ₹40,00,000

Frequently Asked Questions about Law as a Career

  • What is the age limit to apply for Law Entrance Exam? Previously there was an age limit, but now there is no age limit. However, 90-95% of students writing CLAT are under 20 or 21, but technically anyone interested can apply.
  • Which stream should I choose? There is no specific stream suggested to take up law entrance, however, if you are mentally prepared about law as a career then choose commerce or humanities stream after 10th. In case if you choose science, and later wish to take up law, then you need to put in extra effort to crack entrance exams with high scores.
  • Which is better Private or National Law Schools? National Law schools are better but there are many private schools doing a great job. There are few government law schools that are in the way to prove themselves, however, when checking the expenses, national law schools are less expensive. Private law schools are comparatively expensive.
  • What about Higher Studies? After 5 years of BA LLB, few go abroad for pursuing higher studies i.e., LLM. Students who feel to expose themselves in law wish to study more and hence choose LLM. 

Does law as a career suitable for me?

A career is mainly decided based on your interest and skills. If you are studying in 10th standard currently, then you must decide what is your skills and where does your interest lie? 

There are two ways that can help you realize if you should study law as a career or not?

  1. Do you love or like reading? Just reading doesn't decide your skills, however, reading is very important if you choose law as your future. Law includes a lot of reading and research. If you get bored after few minutes of reading any newspapers or any book, then maybe law is not your career. 
  2. Do you like making sounds?  You should love making sound arguments which don't mean loud answer or not continuation of arguments. Give your opinion which gets a back answer not an ending opinion. 

These are just two major parameters required to pursue law as your career. 

FAQ's

What are the most popular law entrance exams in India?

CLAT, AILET, LSAT, DU LLB Entrance Exam are some of the most popular law entrance exams in India.

Is it mandatory to appear for the Law Entrance exam to get admission into a law college?

Some universities provide admission based on the marks scored in class 12 and graduation. However, you have to pass the entrance exam to get admission to any of the top colleges in India.