It is a common perception that pursuing a law degree is all about reading thick volumes of books and burning the midnight oil while memorizing the different sections of law. While this is true to a large extent, students also need to gain practical knowledge and experience to ensure their survival in this highly competitive field.
That is why internships have become an integral part of legal programs offered by the best law colleges in Delhi. Being part of these internship programs provides aspiring law professionals with a major competitive advantage by making them job-ready. The fact that law firms and employers within the corporate sector are no longer willing to spare time for on-job-learning of legal professionals, has further necessitated the need for internships.
A Brief Overview Of Law Internship
A student, well-versed in academics in the field of law may not necessarily be equally well-versed with applying this knowledge in real-life scenarios. Law internships provide students with hands-on experience in practically implementing their theoretical knowledge and skills. The internships help to groom the students and enhance their knowledge about the various aspects of practising law.
There is a wide range of internship options that students can choose from, depending upon their areas of interest. These include interning under a lawyer, law firm or even a government body participating in a legal sphere. Students can also choose to do their internship with a research organization or any other legally-oriented institution.
BCI Regulations With Respect To Law Internships
Most people tend to be unaware of the fact that the Bar Council Of India (BCI), has made it mandatory for every registered law student to complete a minimum internship program before graduating. Students pursuing the three-year LLB program are required to complete a minimum of 12-weeks internship, while those pursuing the five-year BA-LLB program need to complete a minimum 20-weeks internship.
The BCI has also laid out the criteria for the students to get started with these internship programs. The students can start their internship with an NGO and then gradually move to district and high courts before finally interning with law firms in the last stage of their degree program. In addition, students are expected to start their internships in the first year itself so that they get maximum practical exposure and experience by the time they graduate.
Choosing The Right Internship
Having learned about the significance of law internship is not enough. Students need to be aware of the right process of securing the internships to gain maximum benefits. There are four ways listed below, which law students can use to get internship opportunities with organizations providing such options.
- Students can search for firms offering internship opportunities online and fill the application forms available on their websites. In case the application of the students is accepted by an organization, they will be contacted within 2-3 days. This is one of the simplest ways for students to land the internship of their choice.
- Alternately, students can enlist with the internship program offered by their college or educational institution. In fact, almost every law institution including the corporate law colleges in India today have well thought of internship programs as a part of their curriculum. Students can avail of this facility to get internship opportunities that match their career aspirations.
- Another way in which students can procure internships is through personal references and recommendations. However, for this, students need to be a part of extensive legal networks or have a close relationship with someone important enough in this field.
- Yet another method of gaining internships is for the students to showcase their exceptional skill and knowledge of specific legal aspects. Sadly, this is one of the least preferred ways used by students for landing an internship of their choice and in their preferred niche.