How to become a Lawyer in Lebanon: The Short Version
In Lebanon, you should have a Lebanese bachelor's degree in Law in order to be able to apply to one of two Bar Associations. Upon acceptance, a three-year internship is required at the office of an attorney-at-law, after which you will be subject to oral and written examinations.
Lawyers in Lebanon should be Lebanese for at least 10 years.
How to become a Lawyer in Lebanon: The Long Version
In order to practice Law in Lebanon, you should:
First: Be Lebanese for at least 10 years.
Second: Enjoy the civil capacity and is between the age of 20 years old minimum and 65 years old maximum.
Third: Be a holder of the Lebanese Baccalaureate Part II, a Lebanese degree in Law and the qualifying certificate stipulated in the article below.
Fourth: Behaves in a way that inspires trust and respect.
Fifth: Have never been convicted for a criminal or disciplinary act that prejudices honor or dignity.
Sixth: Have never been dismissed from a public service or a previous profession for a reason contrary to honor and dignity.
The applications for registration with the Bar Association shall be submitted to the competent Bar Council, along with the documents proving that the conditions stipulated in Article 5 have been met. The Bar Council shall decide, by virtue of a justified decision, on the registration application within two months of its submission unless it finds it necessary to investigate the applicant’s reputation, in which case, the deadline shall be extended to four months. If the mentioned period expires since the submission of the application without deciding on it, whether by acceptance or rejection, the applicant may approach the civil court of appeals in the governorate of the Bar headquarters that the applicant wishes to join.
The lawyer who is registered with one of the two Bar Associations shall be subject to a three-year internship at the office of an attorney-at-law.
This text does not apply to the judge who has spent in the judiciary a period equivalent to that of internship, nor to the lawyers who have been teaching courses of law for at least three years, nor to the attorneys-at-law who are applying for their re-registration.
The registration application shall be submitted to the Bar President, who refers it to a member of the Bar Council to draft a report verifying whether the legal conditions are met.
The application, along with the report and the documents, shall be referred to the Bar Council to make a decision thereon as per the provisions of this law.
Affiliation to the Roll of Trainee Lawyers
Those wishing to join the roll of trainee lawyers shall submit an application in this regard to the Bar office, enclosed with the following mandatory documents:
1- An Individual Civil Extract with a photo proving that the internship applicant is Lebanese for more than 10 years.
2- A copy of the ID.
3- An original copy of the Lebanese Baccalaureate (Part II)
4- Transcript of the Lebanese Baccalaureate (Part II)
5- A copy of the judicial record, the date of which not exceeding 30 days.
6- 2 passport photos in a formal suit
7- A Degree in Law
a- For the graduates of the Faculty of Law at the Lebanese University, a copy of the Lebanese Degree in Law, certified by the Ministry of Justice, and the transcript of the 4 years of law.
b- For the graduates of Saint-Joseph University, the original copy of the French Degree in Law and the Lebanese Degree in Law, certified both by the Ministry of Justice, and the transcript of the 4 years of law.
c- For the graduates of the Beirut Arab University or La Sagesse University, the original copy of the Degree in Law from one of these two institutes, and the Lebanese Degree in Law from the Faculty of Law at the Lebanese University, certified by the Ministry of Justice, and the transcript of the 4 years of law.
8- Approval of the owner of the law office.
9- An attestation from the National Social Security Fund proving non-subscription to the fund.
After taking the oath and paying the due fees, the trainee lawyer, who has passed the exam of affiliation to the roll of trainee lawyers, shall apply for the card of a trainee lawyer.
10- An attestation from the Imbursements Directorate at the Ministry of Finance, proving that he has not earned salaries from the Lebanese Treasury.
1- The Internship Rapporteur sets the deadline for submitting the internship applications in every session and announces it via posters in all offices of the Bar in Beirut and the governorates. No internship application shall be accepted after the expiry of the deadline set for the submission of applications in the announced session.
2- Within the deadline set by the Rapporteur, the internship applicant shall submit an application enclosed by two identification testimonies from two lawyers who have been in the General Roll for more than 7 years at their own risk, as per the sample adopted by the Bar Council, in addition to the documents required pursuant to articles 12 and 13 of the Law regulating the Legal Profession.
3- The Internship Rapporteur shall inspect the internship applicant’s file to verify that its content meets the required conditions. The Rapporteur excludes every application that does not fulfill the conditions.
Then the rapporteur drafts a report which he refers, along with the registration application and the documents, to the Bar Council, as per Articles 7 and 14 of the Law regulating the Legal Profession.
4- The internship applicant takes an oral exam in the presence of the internship provider.
5- This oral exam takes place before a Committee chaired by the Bar President or whoever he delegates, the Bar Council secretary and the Internship rapporteur as members, as well as two other members chosen by the President. In every case, the President shall assign an alternative member when he or one of the members is absent.
The Committee’s meeting shall be considered as legal in the presence of three of its members at least.
At the end of the oral exam, the Committee shall give a grade from 1 to 25 out of the 100 grades decided for the oral and written exams. The oral exam’s result is calculated with the result the internship applicant obtains in the written exam.
6- The Bar Council shall hold, every year, a session for the oral and written exams that starts in January. When necessary, the Council may hold one or more other sessions.
The Bar Council sets the passing grade for both exams at 50 grades at least out of 100. If the internship applicant does not obtain it, he may take the exam again in any following session.
In case the internship applicant fails to pass four exams in which he had participated, he shall be permanently prevented from submitting any other application for the participation in a new exam, knowing that those who fail the exam of affiliation to the Tripoli Bar Association shall be considered as having taken the exam at the Beirut Bar Association and failed.
The session, in both its oral and written parts, shall be considered as a full indivisible session. Whoever takes the oral exam and fails or is absent from the written exam shall be considered as having participated in the whole session.
All those who have previously submitted applications to participate in the affiliation exams and failed in four or more sessions shall be allowed, only once, to take only one exam in a special session to be decided by the Bar Council. Anyone who has not passed this session successfully shall be submitted to the previous paragraph and permanently prevented from applying for any other regular or special session.
a- Oral exam:
During this exam, the Committee inspects the internship applicant’s curriculum vitae, his capacity to exercise the legal profession, the settings of the office in which he will spend his internship, and his capacity to undertake this noble career. The Committee also checks whether the internship applicant masters the Arabic Language and is fluent in foreign languages, especially French or English. After taking the above into account, the Committee shall test the internship applicant orally with questions chosen by draw about general knowledge, the Law regulating the Legal Profession, its internal regulations and ethics, translation, the Obligations and Contracts Code and the Penal Code. The total grade of the oral exam is 25 out of 100, 5 grades to each of the five oral exam subjects.
At the end of the oral exam of every session, the Committee shall draft and sign the minutes regarding the grades obtained by every internship applicant. The President of the Committee sets a report with which he encloses these minutes, along with the remarks he sees adequate, and that he annexes to the minutes in a sealed envelope signed on the outside by himself and the rapporteur. He hands these minutes to the exercising President. This envelope shall not be opened or its content be published before the end of the written exam and during the session of announcing the session’s final results by the Bar Council.
The members of the Exam Committee shall abide by the confidentiality of deliberations and refrain from giving any information on oral grades or about what happens during deliberations to put these grades.
b- Written exam:
The subjects of the written exam include: : legal general knowledge, the Law regulating the Legal Profession, its by-laws and ethics, translation from French or English into Arabic and vice versa, the Code of Commerce, the Penal Code, the Obligations and Contract Code and the Administrative Law.
Subjects related to legal general knowledge, translation, and the Law regulating the Legal Profession and its by-laws are mandatory. The internship applicant may address the subject related to legal general knowledge whether in Arabic, in English or in French. Regarding the remaining subjects, the internship applicant has the right to choose only two out of the abovementioned subjects.
The internship applicant may be given the right to choose among more than one topic in all mandatory or optional subjects.
The 75 grades of the written exam are distributed as follows: 15 grades for each of the legal general knowledge, the Law regulating the Legal Profession, its by-laws and ethics, and translation, and 15 grades for each of the two subjects the internship applicant has chosen from the legal subjects mentioned above.
8- A draw shall be done regarding the questions to be asked submitted by the members of the Exam Committee stipulated in clause 5 above on the morning of the written exam. The questions are distributed by the Bar President or the rapporteur to the internship applicants.
9- The correction of the written exams shall be done by two or more markers chosen by the Bar President. The markers shall complete their correction works within a deadline not exceeding sixty days from the day they received the exam papers. The Bar President may replace the markers from one session to another.
10- Every exam shall be corrected by two markers. If there is discrepancy of more than 5 grades in the general total of the written exam between the markers, or if the internship applicant failed the written exam with one of the markers and passed it with the other, the Internship Rapporteur shall make a third correction. The final grade shall be calculated on the basis of the average of the three scores.
11- The Internship Rapporteur shall supervise the written exam process and integrity as per the procedures and foundations mentioned above.
12- If two years have passed after the declaration of the result but the one who passed the exam has neither paid the affiliation fee nor taken his oath, the effects of both the oral and written exams shall be duly annulled and he shall be unable to affiliate to the trainee lawyers roll except after undergoing a new exam.
13- Amendments relevant to this Article 19 shall be implemented once this decision is issued.
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