Civil Judge Eligibility Criteria – Age Limit, Qualification

In the Indian legal system, the judge’s position enjoys the highest level of respect. A safe and comfortable tenure is enjoyed by those appointed through the Judicial Services Examination. There are two levels to working in the judiciary. First, there is the lower judicial service, which is for recent graduates who are chosen after taking an entrance exam held by the appropriate State Public Service Commission (UP, MP, Rajasthan, etc.) or the high courts.

This guarantees tenure security and promotions that are subject to deadlines. Higher Judicial Services is the next tier for lawyers who are in practice. The chosen candidates are appointed as Additional District Judges, which speeds up their promotion.

Candidates appointed to the Civil Judge (junior division) position have the authority of the Chief Judicial Magistrate, and those promoted to the Chief Judicial Magistrate position have the authority of the Judicial Magistrate (First Class). Candidates appointed as Additional District and Session Judges are posted to the Supreme Court in rare circumstances and to the High Court in most cases.

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Who Can Be A Civil Judge or Magistrate?

Now that we are aware of the importance of judges, it is time to learn about the requirements for becoming one.

Age: A candidate for a judgeship should be at least 21 years old but not more than 35 years old.

Educational requirements: The applicant should hold a law degree.

Eligibility Criteria for Civil Judge:

Depending on the level at which one is pursuing a career and also depending on the job profiles as there are different types of Civil Judges, different qualifications are needed to become a civil judge. The following are some of the fundamental requirements to qualify as a Civil Judge for various positions:

Candidates’ Age Criteria Experience required
Law Graduates (Freshers) 21-25 years They must hold a law degree (LL.B. or LL.M.) with a minimum of 60% in the general category and 55% in the speciality area (reserved category)
Advocate or Attorney 21-35 years Candidates must have experience working in high or lower courts as an advocate or attorney in addition to having a legal degree.
Members of ministerial staff to the high court 21-45 years Following the completion of their law degree, they are supposed to work for a minimum of three years.
Members of ministerial staff to courts subordinate to High Court 21-45 years After receiving their law degree, they are required to work for a minimum of three years.
Staff members working as Legal Assistants or above in the Law and Judiciary Department in Ministry. 21-45 years Following the completion of their law degree, they are supposed to work for a minimum of three years.
Minister staff members to the Office of the Govt. Pleaders attached to courts. 21-45 years After receiving their law degree, they are required to work for a minimum of three years.

Eligibility criteria for Judicial Services Examination

A candidate must take the PCS (J)-Provincial Civil Service-Judicial Examination to be considered for a position as a judge in the Indian Judicial Services. Law graduates must pass the PCS-J test to join the subordinate judiciary as practicing members.

Only through passing this exam are recent law school grads eligible to sit as a judge on the Subordinate Court. as soon as you pass this test. Judicial Services Examinations are available in two different formats:

  • Lower Judicial Services (LJS)
  • Higher Judicial Services (HJS)

The same three recruitment steps are used for both of these exams, and they are as follows:

Preliminary Exam: In the preliminary exam, candidates are presented with questions in the objective MCQ format. For general categories, a passing score of 60% is required, and for reserved categories, a score of 55%.

Mains Exam: Candidates take one or more written exams with subjective-style questions and answers for the main test. Candidates are called for the next stage if they receive 40% on each subjective paper and 50% overall.

Viva Voce: Qualified applicants for the Viva Voice audition show up for an interview with the hiring committee.

Read More: Civil Judge Powers – Roles And Responsibilities

Lower Judicial Services (LJS)

to appoint Civil Judges in various state courts, LJS Exams are held. These tests are given either by the High Court or the state public service commission in question.

Eligibility: Candidates must have completed either a 3-year LLB degree program or a 5-year Integrated LLB degree to be eligible. All states require applicants to have a bachelor’s degree in law, but many also have a primary requirement based on proficiency in the local language of the state where they desire to practice law.

Age Limit: Candidates must be at least 21 years old to sit for the Lower Judicial Services Exam. The typical top age restriction is 35 years old. Candidates from the OBC, SC, ST, and PWD categories are given accommodations by government-mandated standards. Law students should be aware that each state has a different age restriction.

Higher Judicial Services (HJS)

HJS Exams are frequently held for the elevation of Civil Judges to the position of District Judge or the appointment of Advocates as District Judges. After passing the All India Bar Exam, lawyers who become advocates are admitted to the State Bar Council.

Eligibility: Candidates must be attorneys and must have worked in a court of law for a minimum of seven years in a row. Ideally, they should have worked there longer. Again, each state has its requirements.

Age Limit: Age Restrictions – The general range is 35 to 45 years old. State-to-state differences exist in the minimum and maximum ages.

Read More: Best Books For Civil Judge Exam Preparation

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs):

Q: Is it necessary to pass every exam in the BA LLB (Hons) program on the first try to qualify for a position as a civil judge through the Judiciary Service Exam?

A: It's not necessary, though. You require a degree in full. Regardless of how you finish, whether through improvisation or a second examination. Just finish your BA.LLB., degree on time and with a 50% grade.

Q: What are the requirements for appearing in the Civil Judge Judicial Services Examination?

A: Candidates must have an LL.B. degree (either a 5-year integrated course or a 3-year course) from an accredited university to take the Judicial Services Examination, which is administered by various States.

Q: How do I become a civil judge after earning my LLB?

A:One has two options after earning their LLB degree: apply for the JSE or pursue an LLM and then submit an application to a law school to become a civil judge.

Q: What qualifications must a person meet to receive higher judicial services?

A: Candidates must meet the following criteria to appear for Higher Judicial Services:

  • The minimum and maximum ages for candidates should be 35 and 45, respectively.
  • An Indian citizen is required to apply.
  • As of the first day of January 2020, the applicant must be an advocate with a minimum of seven years of experience.
  • By the judgment of the Hon'ble Supreme Court in Civil Appeal No. 561 of 2013, Deepak Agarwal vs. Keshav Kaushik & Others, prosecuting officers, and assistant prosecuting officers are also treated as attorneys and are qualified.

Q: What topics are covered in the 3 or 5-year LLB programs?

A: Labor law, criminology, constitutional law, professional ethics, the law of insurance, the law of evidence, jurisprudence, human rights and international law, legal writing, moot court training, code of criminal procedure, company law, administrative law, and other topics are some of the ones covered in LLB courses.


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