Law is considered one of the most reputed professions. But often a junior advocate has to face a lot of struggles when they embark on a journey of practice in the court. Those law students who pass out of their law colleges as first-generation lawyers have to face a lot of struggles as they don’t get the proper guidance from the other senior advocates.
The Problems Faced by Junior Advocates
1. Lack of Role Models
Those who are first Generation lawyers in their families often face the challenge of a lack of role models. They have to fend for themselves as the relation between junior and senior advocates have collapsed. When they go to practise under Senior Advocates, they are not taught the trick of the trade. Rather junior advocates are involved in minimalistic works like taking the adjournment, observing the case number, taking the files with seniors etc. But they are deprived of involvement in works like drafting, pleading and so on. Even some Senior Advocates speak with contumely while dealing with Junior Advocates.
2. Lack of Cooperation
Junior advocates face problems because of a lack of cooperation by other advocates and due to increasing competition day by day, junior advocates often fail to get works. Even if they get work, they are unable to do it due to the lack of knowledge of proper procedure and also due to lack of cooperation by other advocates.
3. Corruption in the Court
Most of the people who are employed in the clerical posts in the court are often involved in the corruption activities like transferring files by taking bribes. When Junior advocates are assigned works, they have to pay those employees from their own pockets to get the job done. Very few seniors pay their juniors for these expenses. As a result, junior advocates have to pay the corrupted officials from their own pockets. According to a study, conducted by Transparency International in 2005, more than 62% of Indians paid bribes to public officials to get a job done.
4. Costly Paper Work
Sometimes a Junior Advocate has to pay from his own pocket while doing some paper works. The stamp papers are sold at a higher price due to which junior advocates have to face a lot of troubles. When junior advocates are assigned works by their Senior Advocates, they have to face troubles as they have to pay more money which is hardly paid by some seniors.
Some stamp paper vendors even sell some stamp papers at more price. Junior advocates even also have to go through the bargaining process.
5. Non-cooperation of Client
Most clients prefer to consult with experienced Senior Advocates. Even if Junior Advocates get clients, they get paid a nominal fee even after getting the work done without any discrepancy. Sometimes such amount of fee is not sufficient to cover expenses required to spend while doing the work. As a result, junior advocates have to face an acute shortage of resources.
6. Fear of Public Speaking
When junior advocates pass out from the law colleges, they have to face one of the serious problems i.e. to give submission in front of the court. Because when they were students of 2 or 3 tier colleges, they were not trained properly for public speaking. To solve the aforementioned problems, junior advocates can take the following steps.
1. Make Connections While Studying
Law students should try to make connections when they are already studying in college. They should participate in moot court competitions, debate competitions etc. Thus they will be able to meet many people. It will help them when they will go for practising as an advocate.
They may also participate in college election campaigns. Thus their acquaintances will increase with the seniors who have already passed out of the college and are practising as advocates. It may help them to find out a good Senior in near future.
2. Make Yourself Popular
After passing out of law college when you are likely to start practice, you should focus on your advertisement. Make your visiting cards and distribute them amongst the people who you meet. Besides, you can participate in various talk shows organised by local news channels or write articles on various platforms etc.
3. Alternative Source of Income
If you are someone who has kept your feet on the threshold of the law profession, it will be very difficult for you to make money in the initial years. Therefore you should try to find an alternative source of income to support yourself in those initial years of practice.
As an alternate source of income, you can take various freelancing jobs, teach law students or become a private tutor if you are good at any other subject, you can also use your other skills to earn money.
4. Practice Public Speaking
If you want to overcome the fear of public speaking, you should do a lot of practice. The more you practise, the more you gain self-confidence. To practice public speaking you can participate in various programs like debate competitions, extempore speech, moot court competitions during your college days. You will have to come out of your comfort zone. Until you leave your comfort zone, you can never go ahead in life.
5. Read Books
Besides law books, try to read various other books to develop other skills including communication skills, negotiation skills, reasoning skills etc. Read those books which can be helpful for your profession. If you are a Junior Advocate, you can also read books written by various Judges and Advocates.
Young advocates can read the following books:
- Before Memory Fades: An Autobiography by Fali S Nariman
- Tomorrow’s Lawyers: An Introduction to Your Future by Richard Susskind
- To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
- Nani Palkhivala: The Courtroom Genius by Soli J Sorabjee and Arvind P Datar
- Learning the Law by Glanville Williams
6. Digitalise Yourself
Since this is the era of the internet, you as a junior advocate should thrive for your presence in digital platforms. You can build your own website, youTube channel, Instagram account etc to build your own brand. You can help people by providing legal advice on these digital platforms. It can also be another way to make yourself popular among people.
Due to a lack of proper guidance, many junior advocates have to leave the profession under utter disgust. But instead of leaving the profession, they should try to find out the solution. With hard work, dedication and perseverance anything can be possible.