The Bar Council of India has issued a Notification dated 29th October 2014 by which the “Bar Council of India Certificate of Practice and Renewal Rules. 2014” have been notified.
The Statement of Objects & Reasons of the said Rules points out that there is a visible trend of Advocates switching over to other professions/ service / business without informing the State Bar Council and that this trend is “endangering the legal profession as a whole”. It is also stated that the legal profession has “fallen under a cloud” and that the “control of Bar Associations and of other elected bodies under the Advocates Act is slipping out of the hands of the advocates who practice law”. It is further stated that there is an urgent need for laying down conditions for practicing law in different Courts so as to give due weightage and credence to experience and that before an advocate could practice law in higher Courts, he must be exposed to real court experience in lower and trial courts.
The “Bar Council of India Certificate of Practice and Renewal Rules 2014” seeks to cure these problems affecting the legal profession. Chapter III of the Rules prescribes a minimum experience required to practice before higher Courts of law. It permits newly enrolled advocates to practice before the High Court only after the expiry of two years of practice before the Sessions Court or the District Court. Chapter IV provides that advocates who are enrolled on or before 12th June 2010 shall apply for issuance of a “Certificate of Practice” from the State Bar Council with which he is enrolled. A detailed procedure for the same is also set out. The said Certificate is also required to be renewed every five years.
An advocate who fails to make an application for issuance/ renewal of the “Certificate of Practice” is deemed to have left law practice and to have no bona fide intent and interest in continuing it in future also.
All advocates are requested to urgently apprise themselves of the said Rules and to take necessary action so as to avoid any adverse consequences.