Do you know the path of becoming a lawyer in Malaysia? Let me share with you briefly, so that you can share with someone who is interested to be a lawyer.
The 1st step is to obtain a law degree i.e. LLB (Hons) from the recognised universities. You may obtain the list of the relevant universities from Legal Profession Qualifying Board Malaysia or from the Malaysian Bar website.
Thereafter, you may choose to take up a Bar Vocational Course in England and be called to English Bar or choose to come back to Malaysia to sit for a qualifying exam in order to obtain a Certificate in Legal Practice (CLP). However, for those who have obtained a law degree from UM or NUS (or such person who has possessed the relevant qualification as stipulated by the laws), they are not required to sit for neither of the abovementioned exams.
As soon as you has passed all the requisite exam, you are expected to undergo a 9 months training commonly known as chambering (The official name is pupillage). This is the period where one is exposed to the “real law” world. I bet all the lawyers will not forget this plight period in their practising journey. As a pupil or so called chambie, you are expected to work as hard as a qualified lawyer (or most of the times even harder) with NO salary.
Hah…is it true? yes, you are not entitled to any salary during this period, however, the law firm will pay you a remunaration in form of allowance, the sum of which is as low as a street cleaner’s salary (of course, now a day, may be chambie is getting more than that). The market rate for the allowance in my time ranging from RM300 to RM500 per month. But for those who is lucky enough to get into big firm then they will get about RM700 to RM1,000 allowance per month.
While serving the 9 months “cheap labour”, you will still need to sit through some exams conducted by Malaysian Bar and partake in Malaysian Bar legal aid programme before you can be called to the Malaysian Bar and become a qualified lawyer.
So, are you still interested to be a lawyer now? of course, on another hand, there are also many sweet memories which still linger in my mind while I was serving my pupillage in chamber.
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