government job exams
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This article is written by Sakshi Jaiswal (with inputs from Shweta Devgan) Team LawSikho.

Your LLB degree is a lot more powerful than you think it to be.

It can get you money, fame, and…

Government jobs as well. Yay! 

Job security, steady income, and good work-life balance—there are several reasons why law students flock to government jobs these days. 

However, when it comes to government jobs, where do the opportunities lie? 

Which one pays the highest and holds the maximum prestige? 

What are the career prospects in the banking sector?

Which one can you pursue at over 30 years old?

In this article, I am going to tell you about the various government job exams that a law student should ideally prepare for. What the eligibility criteria are, the age limit and how the exams are conducted… I would delve into them one by one and reveal the most important characteristics of each. 

If you are in law school now, it’s time to start preparing for the same.

If you are a law graduate, it might not be late yet. You can still make your dream come true.

So, without further ado…

Judicial Service Examination

The Indian Judicial Services is one of the most common, famous, and attractive jobs for a lawyer in the Government Sector. Well, becoming a Judge does have an aura per se.

The Judicial Services examinations are primarily taken at two levels i.e, at the lower judiciary level and at the higher judiciary level. 

The eligibility for appearing for the judiciary is obtaining a degree of L.L.B and enrolment as an Advocate under the Advocates Act, 1961. However, for appearing for the higher judiciary an additional experience of seven years is a must. 

The age limit may vary from State to State commonly being 21 years to 35 years and the candidates in the reserved category are given the benefit of age relaxation.

The vacancies come out at the state level and the frequencies of the examinations primarily depend on these vacancies. It is seen that most of these exams are conducted on an annual or biannual basis, and sometimes when there are no vacancies or seats the exam is not conducted at all. 

There is a possibility of re-conducting the exam, in case its process is challenged in the Court of law as has been seen in the recent past, in a couple of States.

The examination is taken in the following three stages:

Preliminary Examination – The preliminary examination is the first exam to be taken up as it serves as a screening for the subsequent exam. It comprises objective type questions in the form of multiple-choice questions (MCQs). The marks secured in the preliminary examination are not counted for the final selection.

Mains Examination – The second exhaustive exam is the mains examination which is subjective type. The exam comprises three to four papers. The marks secured by candidates are counted for the final selection. 

Viva-Voce/Personal Interview – This is the final stage of selection where candidates are assessed on general interest, personality, and intelligence among other factors.

The syllabus for the examination varies across States and is broadly divided into:

  • Civil law
  • Criminal Law
  • Language paper

The language paper comprises around 20% to 35% of the examinations but it should be kept in mind that if you fail the language paper, all your other papers can go for a toss too.

The starting basic salary of a judicial officer varies from State to State usually ranging from INR 30,000 to INR 50,000 per month along with other allowances as sanctioned by the Government. It also happens to be one of the very few government jobs remaining, which still offer after-retirement pensions.

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CLAT-PG

The Common Law Admissions Test is a unified law entrance conducted yearly for aspirants seeking admission in NLUs for admission to either LLB or LLM programmes in India. The CLAT PG is often taken to secure government jobs in the top public sector undertakings (PSUs) such as BHEL, IOCL, NTPC, and ONGC

A lot of PSUs recruit their legal officers through the ranks that the candidates have appeared in the examination. On qualifying the written entrance examination of CLAT PG, the final selection is done on the basis of an extensive interview by the PSUs as per their individual standard. 

The cut-off prescribed by each PSU differs every year. The CLAT PG examination pattern has been changed by the consortium of NLUs from 2020 onwards and the paper will be divided in the following manner.

The first section would include 100 objective-type questions carrying 1 mark each. There shall be a negative marking of 0.25 marks for every wrong answer.

The second section would require candidates to write 2 descriptive essays.

The paper will be based on the mandatory subjects of the undergraduate program and include Constitutional Law, Jurisprudence, Administrative Law, Law of Contract, Torts, Family Law, Criminal Law, Property Law, Company Law, Public International Law, Tax Law, Environmental Law, and Labour & Industrial Law.

Important details of the examination and dates pertaining to the same can be found here.

SEBI – Legal Officers

The Securitization and Exchange Board of India regulates the securities and commodity markets in India. SEBI recruits Grade ‘A’ officers every year in various streams including legal.  

The 2020 application dates for SEBI Grade ‘A’ have been extended till 31.05.2020 and the same can be accessed here. The SEBI recruitment process is divided into three phases:

Phase I – This is an objective type exam of MCQs from subjects such as General Awareness, English Language, Quantitative Aptitude, Test of Reasoning, and Awareness of security markets.  

Phase II – This exam will consist of three papers similar to phase I which consist of MCQs on the Financial Sector, English (Writing Skills) and a specialized stream which is chosen by the candidate. The legal paper under specialized streams will include the Constitution of India, Law of Contracts, Company Law, Criminal Law etc.

Phase III – This will be the final stage of the recruitment process which will curtail and interview. The candidates will be assessed on general interest, personality, and intelligence among other factors. This phase is followed by document verification of qualified candidates.

The number of vacancies differs from year to year, however, this year a total number of 147 vacancies have been released which are divided into various streams. There are 12 vacancies in the legal stream which again are bifurcated into general and reserved categories. 

The basic salary of a Grade ‘A’ officer in SEBI starts from INR 28,150 along with government allowances.

The detailed version of the syllabus for the SEBI examination can be accessed here

RBI – Legal Officers 

The RBI holds examinations to recruit officers every year. This year the RBI Board has issued applications for recruitment of Grade ‘B’ officers under which the number of vacancies released for a legal officer is limited to one (1). 

The past trend says that RBI has reduced the recruitment of candidates with legal backgrounds. The number was much higher during the 2000s. 

The age limit that has been prescribed is from 21 to 32 years, however, a candidate with an LLM degree can attain up to 3 years of relaxation and a candidate with a Ph.D. in law can attain up to 5 years of relaxation. 

A candidate appearing for the RBI examinations for the aforesaid position must have obtained at least 50% aggregate in its Bachelor’s Degree and must have at least two years’ experience as an (i) Advocate/ Legal Consultant/ Legal Assistant/ Associate in an Advocates’ or Solicitors’ Office or Law firm after being enrolled with the Bar Council; or (ii) as a Law Officer in the Legal Department of a large bank/financial institution /statutory corporation /company/State/ Central Government or (iii) as a full-time teacher in a Law College/ University, teaching law

The selection is done through the process of a written examination and an interview. The written exam is conducted in two parts:

Paper I – General Knowledge of Law (Objective and Descriptive Type): (i) Constitutional Law (ii) Administrative Law (iii) Principles of Statutory Interpretation (iv) Law of Evidence (v) Contract Act, 1872 (vi) Transfer of Property Act,1882 (vii) Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881 (viii) Registration Act, 1908 (ix) Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (x) Legal Drafting, etc. The above syllabus is only indicative and not exhaustive.

Paper-II – English: Essay, Precise writing, Comprehension and Business/Office Correspondence

Please note that the syllabus may change slightly yearly, but the same shall be notified on the official RBI website.

As a Legal Officer of the RBI, you are required to deal with legal issues of various other banks and its associate institutes. Legal drafting, consultation, and even court appearance on behalf of the RBI will also be a part of the duty that you will take up.

The basic salary of a Grade ‘B’ officer at the RBI starts from INR 35,150 along with allowances.

The examinations for this year were held in February, however, the next year’s application will be released around September 2020, and the same can be checked on the website.

Other government banks also release vacancies from time to time for legal professionals and the same can be checked regularly on their website.

NABARD

The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development every year circulates online applications for recruitment of Grade ‘A’ officers which includes the appointment of Legal Officers as well. 

This year there were a total number of (3) three vacancies announced for the post of Legal Officers which was divided amongst general and reserved categories. 

A candidate appearing for the position of an Assistant Manager Grade ’A’ (Legal) must possess an LLB Degree with 50% aggregate.

The selection process is divided into three phases as follows:

Phase I – This exam curtails objective type questions which will have questions from English, Reasoning, Computer, Quantitative aptitude, and general awareness. You may also be faced with questions from Economic & Social Issues and Agriculture & Rural development with a primary focus on rural development.

Phase II – This exam is called the mains exam and will include a mix of objective and subjective type questions. The paper checks your proficiency in interpreting various Laws such as Banking, Negotiable Instruments, Company laws, Industrial and Cooperative Laws, Cyber laws, Commerce/Property transactions, Rural non-life insurance, direct financing, staff matters and experience in drafting various types of documents  

Phase III – Candidates qualifying the mains exam will automatically be selected for an interview.

UGC NET 

The University Grants Commission organizes the National Eligibility Test on a yearly basis. It is a national-level qualifying examination for anyone who aspires to become a lecturer or a researcher across India.

The aspirant must possess a postgraduate degree and should have secured a minimum of 55% for General Category and 50% for reserved categories in post-graduation or equivalent degree. 

Candidates may also appear for the UGC NET while they are waiting for their post-graduation results. 

You may attain the Junior Research Fellowship or can become an Assistant Professor at a UGC recognized university on qualifying the UGC NET, however, the eligibility for both will differ as has been mentioned herein below:

JRF

Age limit – 30 years

5 years relaxation in age to reserved category candidates such as OBC, ST, SC, PWD, Women and Transgender Applicants.

3 years of relaxation in age to candidates pursuing LLM.

Assistant Professor

No upper age limit for appearing to become an assistant professor.

The selection process comprises two papers which are conducted together. Paper 1 is a common General Aptitude Test which consists of questions based on Reasoning Ability, Comprehension Reading, Mental Ability, and General Awareness, and paper 2 consists of 100 MCQs type questions based on Law subjects each of 2 marks. 

The law subjects that are covered under paper 2 are Constitutional Law of India, Public International Law, Legal Theory, Family Law, Law of Torts, Law of Contracts, Law of Crimes and Labour Law.

The UGC NET exam this year will be held on 16.06.2020 and the last date for filling the application form has been extended till 16.05.2020. The application form can be accessed here.

JAG

Have you had that dream of becoming a part of the Indian army but became a lawyer instead? If yes – you can definitely have it both ways.

The Judge Advocate General is preferably referred to as the legal advisor to the commander in the Indian Army. He/ she is the representative of army cases in Civil Courts and is burdened with a number of other duties as well. 

Being a part of the army does not only give you an opportunity to become a part of the most respectable organization in the country but also gives you a chance to serve your country.

The notifications for the position of JAG are released here twice a year during July & August and January & February. 

The candidate must possess an LLB degree with an aggregate of 55% and must be registered with Central or State Bar Council. The age limit for applying for the JAG is from 21 years to 27 years and only unmarried individuals can apply for the position. 

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Both men and women can apply for the position, however, the vacancy released for men is 20 and for women is 8 every year.

The selection process for JAG does not include a written examination. On applying for the position as prescribed in the notification, candidates are directly called for the Service Selection Board (SSB) interview which is further divided into two stages:

Stage 1 – Screening test on the day of reporting at the Selection Centre.

Stage 2 – GTO, psychology test, and personal interview.

The SSB is conducted in a rapid-fire manner. A candidate appearing for the SSB interview must possess good communication skills, general awareness and physical fitness. It is advised for candidates to be thorough with Constitutional and Contract law. It is an asset for candidates to indulge in extra-curricular activities as well.

On being selected for the JAG position, the candidates undergo extensive training in the Training Academy of Chennai and learn military laws which are not accessible to every common individual. The JAG position extends for 10 years and may extend permanently too if you apply for it. An extension of four years is palpably given on applying though. 

If you have the passion and capability to serve your country, this can definitely be the way forward. 

UPSC 

Every year the Union Public Service Commission hosts the Civil Service Examinations attracting a great number of graduates to take up the examination including law students. 

On qualifying the CSE, graduates can attain the opportunity to work in the government sectors such as the Indian Administrative Service (IAS), the Indian Foreign Service (IFS) and the Indian Police Service (IPS).

The age for taking the UPSC is prescribed at 21 years to 35 years. The UPSC is conducted in three stages as has been given below:

Prelims – The prelims is divided into two objective type papers, (i) General Knowledge (ii) CSAT including maths, reasoning, etc. Approximately 14 lakhs students appear for prelims but only 10 to 20 thousand reach the mains examination.

Mains – On clearing the prelims, a candidate can appear for mains and in this can choose an optional subject of his/her choice.  The mains paper is divided into nine (9) subjects which can be divided in the following manner:

Ø  English (Qualifying Paper)

Ø  Language (Qualifying Paper)

Ø  Essay

Ø  GS 1 – History and Geography

Ø  GS 2 – Polity and  International Governance

Ø  GS 3 – Economics etc.

Ø  GS 4 –  Ethics

Ø  Optional Paper 1

Ø  Optional Paper 2

Interview – On clearing the mains paper, approximately 1000 candidates qualify for an interview by the UPSC Board. The marks of both the mains exam and the interview round are considered for the final exam.

A law student has the benefit of choosing law as his/her optional subject as well. Last year papers are easily available online for UPSC. 

The number of vacancies varies year to year which is approximately 700 to 900 and even though a number of vacancies in different departments are released, a candidate can state its reference while applying for mains examination. 

It is a must to read the newspaper for GK preparation. The NCERT also comes handy in the process. 

The salary post qualification differs from post to post.

Supreme Court Law Clerk or Research Assistant examination 

The Registry of the Supreme Court of India organizes the judicial clerkship exam. Final year students are allowed to appear for this examination, however, he/she will need to furnish proof of qualification during the interview. 

This opportunity provides the first-hand experience to a candidate aspiring to be either a part of the bench or litigation in the future.

 The selection process is divided into two segments:

Written Exam – This exam is divided further into two sections: (i) General Knowledge & English (ii) Law.

Interview – On qualifying the written exam the candidates are called in for an interview which is conducted by a three-panel member consisting of Hon’ble Judges of the Supreme Court.

The syllabus of the written exam expands from Procedural laws including civil and criminal, Constitution, and IPC. The detailed syllabus can be accessed here

The age limit prescribed for the exam is 19 years to 27 years. 

The position of Law Clerk is given on a contractual basis for a period of one (1) year at a stipend of INR 30,000 per month. Since it can be given in the final year of law itself, it can reward any student with a promising start in the career of law.

Public Prosecutor

The UPSC hosts the exam for public prosecutors as well but the same cannot be taken up by a law student or even a fresher due to the experience that is required. 

A candidate can only appear for the public prosecutor examination if he/she has attained the age of 35 years and has an experience of seven years. 

A person who appears for this exam can get the position of a District Attorney or the Assistant District Attorney.

It is pertinent to note that any professional aspiring to become a public prosecutor must maintain a check on the UPSC website for timely updates and maintain good practice in the Court of law. 

The biggest challenge you will face… 

All set and done. 

You have decided that you would attempt all these examinations one by one. Good.

You got the textbooks. You got the syllabus in hand. You even got the meditation app. Very good.

But if you do not have the right mentor to guide you, I can tell you it is highly likely that you might find it too tough to pass these competitive exams. 

Yes, there are a chosen few who could achieve the impossible, studying old, borrowed books under the streetlights, and still securing an AIR!

Then there are the rest who would need to put in not a hundred per cent, but their two hundred per cent to be able to pass these exams on the first go or in as few attempts as possible.

They would need to follow a time-tested exam strategy.

They would need to prepare short, digestible study notes.

They would have to practice mock test papers every day.

They would need someone to tell them where they are going wrong. Where their strengths and weaknesses lie, what they need to work on…

That’s where our Lord of the Courses comes in.

Lord of the Courses is a unique judiciary test prep course that not only helps you prepare for your targeted judiciary exam but also for other law-related government job exams that you want to appear for.

With ready-made and printable study notes, mock test papers, personal feedback, live classes per week, doubt clearance within 24 hours, past-years question paper analysis, All Indian Ranking, exam strategy preparation, free access to our civil litigation, criminal litigation and contract drafting, cyber law and IPR courses, and much more…

This course offers much more than any regular coaching centre can.

What really sets our course apart from the rest? It’s designed in such a way that it is not aimed at the judiciary exam. 

Though the primary emphasis is on the judiciary exam, we have consulted various academic and industry experts and built this course such that it covers the syllabus of other law-related competitive exams too. 

You sign up for this one course and you are basically getting tutored for ALL government job exams for the LLB graduates. 

(If you were to study in a private coaching institute, it would probably charge you an extra for this or even ask you to get admission to multiple courses. Who knows!)

In fact, we are so proud of our course that we literally beat our own chest like King Kong and roar, “It’s the f’cking best in the market, dude!”

Want to know more about the course? Read on for full details.

Also, just to let you know, you can always get in touch with our career counsellors by giving us a call on 011 4084 5203 or commenting below, with your phone number, stating “I want to pass the judiciary exam.” We will get in touch with you.

Now, I am not saying that this course is the “magic pill” to pass any of these exams. It does not work like that, unfortunately. There exist no magic pills in life.

What actually determines the probability of success and failure though is whether you are READY or not.

We will provide (almost) EVERYTHING that you need but ultimately, you have to make use of those resources and prepare yourself for the exams. 

Let me tell you they are not easy at all. Lakhs of students, like you, attempt these exams and only a handful of them get selected. 

It takes a lot more than a mere online course to make it possible. 

That requires you to be ready, mentally and physically

You would need to have the spirit to say, “Yes, I can do it and I am going to do it.” If you don’t, then we will not be able to help you even if we try our hardest.

So, are you ready?

If yes, give us a call on 011 4084 5203 or comment below to this article, with your phone number, stating “I want to pass the judiciary exam.” We will get in touch with you.

P. S. LawSikho is running hour-long webinars every day. Want to learn how to improve your learning skills? Prepare an LLM application to a foreign university? Career opportunities in new, upcoming areas of law? Don’t miss these high-quality webinars with industry and academic experts.

P. P. S. All our premium courses are covered under an unwavering 45 days full money-back guarantee

After taking a course, if you feel like it is not working out for you, maybe you are not getting enough value out of it or it is not meeting your expectations, just get in touch with us. We will refund every rupee you paid for the course.

No questions asked, as long as the minimum requirements of the refund policy are fulfilled.


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