This article on ‘How to get registered as an Advocate in India?‘ was written by Riya Chaudhary, an intern at Legal Upanishad.
In the administration of justice, the legal profession is essential. The advocate helps the judge get the best conclusion possible. To help judges or juries make the best conclusion possible, the advocate gathers relevant legal data for the case. The judges wouldn’t be able to render a just decision without counsel. The Advocates Act of 1961’s Sections 16 to 28 control the enrollment and admission of advocates. A person who is registered as an advocate under the Advocates Act, 1961, is referred to as an advocate, per Section 2(1)(a) of that law.
First, the candidate must register with the State Bar Council in order to become an advocate in the territory of India under the Advocates Act, 1961. A state bar council was established under Section 3 of the Advocates Act of 1961 to serve as the governing authority for attorneys registered in the areas it governs.
Who is an Advocate?
An advocate is someone who openly backs a cause or an issue. An advocate represents his client in court in the legal system. The most crucial element of any nation’s judicial system is an advocate. He is the only one who must present the evidence and use his arguments to vindicate the victim. He presents facts and arguments, and the court bases its decision on those. He is capable of either making a case out of thin air or disproving one. Because of the crucial position he plays in the legal system, an advocate is frequently referred to as the officer of the court.
After speaking with the client and learning the pertinent details of the case, the advocate just draughts the case’s general framework. Only after carefully reviewing the facts and analyzing the pertinent legal laws is the final documentation created. It is the advocate’s responsibility to arrange the facts properly in order to build a compelling argument in the client’s favour.
First Step: Law Bachelor’s Degree (L.L.B)
To work as an advocate in India, one must get an L.L.B., or law bachelor’s degree (Legum Baccalaureus). A legal bachelor’s degree can take three or five years to complete.
Second Step: Registration in the State Bar Council
Enrolling in one of the State Bar Councils governed by the Advocates Act of 1961 is the last requirement to become an advocate. Every state has a different registration procedure. The candidate must pass the All-India Bar Examination after completing registration (AIBE). The candidate receives a certificate of practice after passing the test, which is administered by the Bar Council of India. The test is used to evaluate candidates’ fundamental analytical skills and legal knowledge.
The procedure of registration as an Advocate
Criteria as per Sec 24 of the Advocates Act, 1961
The 1961 Act grants the SBCs the authority to create their own rules and guidelines for the registration of advocates. A committee assembled by the relevant councils reviews the applications of candidates who want to work as advocates. Candidates who have been accepted by the SBC are eligible to take the BCI-administered AIBE. After completing this test, the State-enlisted advocate will be issued a certificate that will allow him or her to represent clients in any lower or a higher court located inside Indian territory. The requirements to be admitted to the Bar Council are outlined in Section 24 of the Act:
- The person must be an Indian national. Any other national may be appointed as an advocate on a State-by-State basis if the following requirements are satisfied:
- Must be a citizen of India.
- Must meet the conditions for qualification.
- Has received permission to practice law in a foreign country.
- Should be subject to all reasonable restrictions that are put in place.
- The candidate’s age must be at least twenty-one but not below.
- One must have a law degree from a BCI-accredited university. If the applicant is from another nation, a legal degree from a foreign institution will be sufficient as long as the Act and the BCI recognize the degree in India.
- The individual must adhere to any additional conditions or limitations imposed by the State governments.
Process of Registration
The committee is mandated by the Act to supervise the enrollment procedure and has the power to carefully review each candidate’s application. A Rs. 600 enrolment fee must be paid to the relevant SBC and Rs. 150 must be deposited with the BCI in accordance with Section 24(1)(f) of the Act. These payments will be made to the various councils using different demand draughts. Although individual states may establish their own rules, the bulk of them demands that the candidate meet certain requirements, such as:
- A law degree from a university that satisfies the council’s requirements must be shown together with the application.
- Degree mark sheets must also be supplied.
- Papers with judicial stamps.
- Fees must be paid.
The Council’s Enrolment Committee will review the applicant’s application. Candidates that fit the bill are chosen to serve as SBC’s representatives in those positions. Candidates who meet the requirements and want to register as advocates are given a Certificate of Enrolment by SBC.
All India Bar Examination (AIBE)
The Bar Council of India adopted a resolution on April 10, 2010, announcing that it would hold an All-India Bar Examination. An advocate is qualified for a Certificate of Practice, which entitles him or her to practice under Chapter IV of the Advocates Act of 1961, in accordance with the Bar Council of India’s rules.
The council went on to say that:
- To continue practicing law in India, all attorneys enrolled under Section 24 of the Advocates Act of 1961 must pass this test.
- After the academic year 2009–2010, all law graduates are required to take the Bar Exam.
The number of times you can take the bar exam is unrestricted. If an advocate does not pass the exam the first time, he or she may retake it and receive the certificate of practice after passing the test.
Application procedure for All India Bar Examination (AIBE)
Everything in the modern world has been digitalized and moved online as a result of digitization. On the exam’s official website, you may get information on the test as well as the application process. Following are the steps:
- Visit the All India Bar Examination’s official website.
- Candidates are required to register and submit basic personal data.
- An email with the registration confirmation will be sent to the registered email address.
- Accessing the application form requires logging in with valid credentials.
- You must first create an e-challan before completing the application form.
- You need to pay the application fee.
- A printout of the papers and the receipt is required for your records.
Therefore, it can be said that performing the aforementioned measures to reach out and administer the examination is one of the necessary steps in the process of enrolling in the Bar.
Advocates can practice in all states
Anywhere throughout the nation, lawyers who are listed on the rolls of one state may practice. According to section 30 of the Advocates Act, an advocate is qualified to practice in all the areas covered by this act (the entire country of India), in all courts, including the Supreme Court of India, and before any tribunals, authorities, or individuals who are authorized to take evidence in the case.
However, in order to practice in a state other than the one in which they are registered, an advocate must register with that state’s Bar Council. The advocate cannot work without first becoming registered with the State Bar Council. He has to finish registering and pay the registration fees. An advocate may belong to more than one State Bar Council, but in order to maintain his membership in those councils, he must pay their respective annual dues.
Today’s law graduates have a wide range of choices. Starting early in his profession, an advocate can work individually and in secret. In addition, he has the option of specializing in a variety of legal fields, including corporate, tax, and criminal law. To learn more and develop experience, new attorneys might also join the chamber of senior attorneys. A person can work for the government as an advocate. After passing the state judicial services test, one can become a judge.
He might use this to advance his judicial magistrate or civil judge career. There are numerous chances in the private sector. A legal counsel position at a law firm could pay well. Banks have already designated attorneys to act as their legal representatives in court. The work of the activists is frequently uplifting and entertaining. Advocates in India have a promising future, but if they want to succeed, they must dedicate themselves to it.
- Goutam Sahu (25 June, 2018) ‘How to be an Advocate’ https://blog.ipleaders.in/advocate-enrollment-procedure/
- Finology Blog (23 Sept 2021) ‘How to become an Advocate in India?’ https://blog.finology.in/Legal-news/how-to-become-advocate-in-india
- Naveen Talawar (02 June, 2022) ‘A guide to admission and enrollment of advocates in India https://www.latestlaws.com/articles/a-guide-to-admission-and-enrollment-of-advocates-in-india-186095