Law remains one of the most respected professions in the world. It is regarded as a hot cake in many countries in the world including Ghana.
To become a lawyer in Ghana is not a straightforward process. You’ll have to pass through various educational institutions and exams before being called to bar as a legal practitioner.
In this article, we are going to share with you the steps to follow if you want to become a lawyer in Ghana.
How To Become A Lawyer In Ghana
As said earlier, the road to becoming a lawyer in Ghana is not straightforward. Before you can become a lawyer in Ghana you must go through a Law programme in any of the accredited universities in Ghana.
After that, you can move on to the Ghana School of Law, where you’ll undergo a programme that will determine your chances of being called to the Ghana Bar Association.
Once you are called to the Ghana Bar Association, you can go on to practice law in any law firm in Ghana. There are over 400 law firms in Ghana that are recognized by the Ghana Bar Association. Ensure that the law firm you choose is legally recognized.
Below, you’ll find more explanation on the steps to becoming a lawyer in Ghana
1. Get Admitted To Study Law In the University
The first step is to get admitted to a University that offers law. There are a few universities in Ghana that offer Law as a course. The most popular of these universities is the University of Ghana.
University of Ghana
The University of Ghana is a public tertiary institution in Ghana. It was established in 1948 to offer academic services to the general public. It is one of the few universities accredited by the National Accreditation Board to teach law.
There are different law programmes offered by this university. You can sign up for anyone and still end up with a law degree.
Option 1 – 4 Year (Full-time) LLB Programme
This option is for those that have WASSCE or GCE qualification and wish to be admitted to study law.
The admission for WASSCE is usually different from that of GCE. The requirements can also be changed on a yearly basis. Check through the University of Ghana’s admission requirements for law and make sure you meet the requirements before applying.
Option 2 – 3 Year (Full-time) LLB Programme
This option is for those who already have a first degree in a discipline other than law and want to pursue a career in Law. Not all degrees will be accepted and your grades must meet or pass the minimum grades required for admission.
Through this option, you only get to spend 3-years on the LLB programme.
Option 3 – 4 Year (Part-time) LLB Programme
This option is best for those who are either working or run their own businesses. This option is much flexible. If you don’t have enough time in the day to study, you can go for this option as the learning hours are shorter and the time spent in school is lesser.
To qualify, you must have a first degree in a non–law subject. The length of this LLB programme is 4 years.
2. Enroll in the Ghana School of Law
When you’re done with your LLB programme you’ll have to move to the Ghana School of Law. You’ll enroll in its two-year programme.
There are several admission requirements you’ll have to meet before you can be accepted into the School, you’ll also have to pass the entrance examination and meet the cutoff mark before you can be offered admission.
To be eligible to partake in the entrance examination, you must meet the following requirements:
- You must be an LLB graduate from any University in Ghana approved by the National Accreditation Board and the General Legal Council.
- If you are a Ghanaian LLB graduate with a degree from foreign universities, you must ensure that the courses you offered coincide with the prescribed courses for admission to the institution. Such applicants must have passed the subjects/courses listed below
- Ghana Constitutional Law
- Ghana Legal System and Methods
- Criminal Law
- Law of Equity and Succession
- Law of Torts
- Law of Contract
- Law of Immovable Property
- Company Law
- Commercial Law
Applicants must also have studied and passed any one of the following courses
- Law of Natural Resources
- Environmental Law
- Intellectual Property Law
- Law of Taxation
3. Obtain License to Practice Law in Ghana
You are likely to spend 3 – 4 years in the university and then 2 years in the Ghana School of Law. When you’re done, you’ll have to be called to bar. Normally, lawyers who finish from the Ghana School of Law become automatic members of the Ghana Bar Association.
The next step is to obtain a license to practice law in Ghana. Without that license, you will be unable to present cases in court or work as a law firm. If you do so, you will only be doing it illegally which could incur some serious consequences.
The license is provided by the Ghana Legal Council. The Ghana Legal Council was set up to supervise and consolidate the law relating to the Legal Profession in Ghana.
To obtain the license, you’ll have to fill a solicitor’s application form. You can get this form at any of the offices of the Ghana Bar Association or you can go to the Ghana Legal Council official website to download and fill the form.
You will have to submit the form at any of the offices of the Ghana Bar Association nearest to you.
When approved, you can go ahead to practice law in Ghana as a legal practitioner.
Those are the steps to take if you want to become a lawyer in Ghana. if you want to become a Judge, you’ll have to practice law in Ghana for a period of time. The period of time will depend on the rank of the type of Judge.
Supreme Court Judges have a higher rank than Court of Appeal and High Court Judges You’ll be required to practice law in Ghana for at least 15 years before you can become a Supreme Court Judge.
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