Exploring the Limitations: Can Advocates Pursue Other Careers?
Lawyers are allowed to do something else after enrolling with the Bar Council of India, but there are some restrictions.
Rule 47 of the Bar Council of India Rules states that an advocate shall not engage in any trade, business, or occupation, other than his profession, except such as is consistent with the dignity of the profession.
This means that lawyers are not allowed to engage in any activities that could bring the legal profession into disrepute. For example, a lawyer could not work as a real estate agent or a stockbroker, as these activities could be seen as a conflict of interest.
However, there are some activities that lawyers are allowed to engage in, even if they are not directly related to the legal profession. For example, a lawyer could teach law at a university, or write books or articles about law. Lawyers could also work as journalists, or work for government agencies or non-profit organizations.
If a lawyer is unsure whether or not a particular activity would be considered to be a breach of Rule 47, they should consult with the Bar Council of India.
In July 2022, the Supreme Court of India ruled that law graduates employed in other professions need not resign from their respective jobs to get enrolled as lawyers. The court gave the Bar Council of India six months to implement a new system that would allow law graduates to provisionally enrol as lawyers while they continue to work in other jobs.
This ruling is a significant development, as it means that more people will be able to pursue a career in law, even if they are already employed in another field.