The process of becoming a lawyer could be a very tedious and frustrating one. From spending more years in the university than some of their counterparts in other departments, to the stressful and rigorous year in the law school, this task can prove to be an arduous one for a dispassionate individual.
In this article, we would examine the different steps an aspiring legal practitioner is required to take before he or she can be regarded as a barrister and solicitor of the supreme court of Nigeria. These steps are listed under Section 4(1) of the Legal Practitioners Act. They include:
1. An applicant must have completed a law degree from an accredited University in Nigeria. An aspiring law student usually spends 5 years in a Nigerian University. If it happens to be a public one, he or she may be unlucky and spend more than those years.
2. An applicant must have completed the course of professional training at the Nigerian law School. After gaining admission to the Nigerian Law school an aspiring legal practitioner would be taught procedural laws as opposed to the theoretical laws he or she was familiar with at the university.
3. An applicant must produce a qualifying certificate to the body of benchers. After aspiring candidates must have passed the bar final examinations, they are given a certificate that attests to their successful completion of the one year mandatory program at the Nigerian law school
4. An applicant must have been enrolled as a barrister and solicitor of the Supreme Court of Nigeria. A call to bar ceremony would be held and successful candidates would be called as barristers and solicitors of the supreme court. Afterwards, they are required to register their names on the roll of legal practitioners in Nigeria.
It should be noted that a foreign Nigerian student can also become a lawyer in Nigeria. Once he has completed the university degree, he is to spend two years in the law school as opposed to the one year required of local students.
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