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Nikita Parmar

Updated on 22nd February, 2023 , 7 min read

How to Become a Judge: In India, After 12th, Eligibility Criteria, Courses and Certificates, Salary 2023

How to Become a Judge in India Overview

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In India, becoming a judge is regarded as one of the most distinguished public services. The office of the judge is one of honor and respect. A judge presides over the proceedings and hears both the defendants and the prosecution. He or she renders a decision in court after hearing both sides and applying the relevant legislation. The process to become a judge is difficult and time-consuming, but it may lead to a rewarding career. A judge's work entails significant responsibility and can be quite taxing. If you want to learn how to become a judge, this article will go over the essential steps.

Who is a Judge?

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A judge is a person who, either alone or as part of a panel of judges, presides over court proceedings. A judge hears all of the witnesses and any other evidence provided by the case's barristers or solicitors, evaluates the parties' credibility and arguments, and then gives a verdict in the matter based on their interpretation of the law and their own personal opinion. A judge is expected to preside over the trial impartially and in public.

What does a Judge do?

The following are some of the responsibilities played by a judge-

  1. A judge is a qualified professional who is appointed to preside over court proceedings.
  2. The judge renders the ultimate decision after hearing from both sides in court. 
  3. He or she judges on legal issues serves as a mediator between both sides in court and makes judgments in legal disputes. 
  4. He or she listens to witness testimony, judges the admissibility of evidence, and advises defendants of their rights. 
  5. The jury is given instructions by a judge.
  6.  A judge is responsible for assessing whether a criminal defendant is guilty, a guilty convict, or innocent. 
  7. He or she sentences defendants who have been proven guilty. 
  8. In legal cases, a judge is in charge of assessing culpability or damages.

How to Become a Judge in India Quick Facts

The following table gives quick details about how to become a judge in India-




Law & Judiciary 

Required Skills

Unbiasedness, Emotional Intelligence, Analytical Skills, Communication Skills, Logical Sense, Reasoning Skills.


The applicant must have completed a 3 or 5-year LL.B. program as an undergraduate degree. Under the Advocates Act of 1961, certain states mandate enrollment as an advocate.

Related Industries

Supreme Court of India, High Court, District Court, Sessions Court, Civil Court, Tribunals

Average Starting Salary

INR 5.50 LPA

Highest Salary


Top Recruiters

Uttar Pradesh Public Service Commission, Bihar Public Service Commission, Maharashtra Public Service Commission, and Orissa Public Service Commission.

How to Become a Judge in India?

The Indian judicial system is an integrated one that includes the Supreme Court or apex court at the top (at the national level), high courts, and lower courts (at the state level). Because each court has its own group of judges, the qualifications and powers of each court vary. To become a judge in India, there are various courses and processes that must be completed in order to have a smooth trip. Preparing for a career should begin in elementary school. The methods for becoming a judge in India are listed below-

How to Become a Judge in India after 12th?

School Level Preparation- After passing the board examinations, there are no special courses that should be taken. Students from many disciplines, including science, commerce, and the humanities, can pursue law studies after completing their 12th grade.

How to Become a Judge After High School?

Upon successful completion of Class 12, the actions that need to be done in order to become a judge after the 12th are given below -

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  1. UG Level Preparation- After completing their 12th grade, students can pursue a variety of Undergraduate Law Courses such as BA LLB, BCom LLB, BSc LLB, and BBA LLB. Many admission tests are held in order to enroll students in the aforementioned Undergraduate Law Courses.
  2. PG Level Preparation- Students can also pursue postgraduate law courses such as an LLM from some of the country's leading law schools. Students must take several Law Entrance examinations to be admitted to Postgraduate Law studies.

How to Become a Judge in India after LLB?

After an LLB degree, candidates must pass the Judicial Services Examination. The relevant State Public Service Commissions administer the test. Students with a minimum of 55% in any branch of law are eligible to take the test. The Judicial Service Examination is divided into three stages-

  1. Preliminary Examination 
  2. Mains Examination 
  3. Viva-Voce/ Interview

Candidates who pass the preliminary test with a minimum of 60% (55% for reserved categories) and the written examination with an aggregate of 55% will be invited to the final interview session. Aspirants who pass the judicial examinations will be appointed as District Magistrate, Additional District Magistrate, or District Judge.

How to Become a Supreme Court Judge in India?

The Supreme Court, High Courts, and Subordinate Courts compose the Indian judicial system. The Supreme Court, based in New Delhi, is the highest court. Any other court in India cannot question or overturn the Supreme Court's decision. A person must be an Indian citizen to serve as a judge on India's Supreme Court. One must have earned an LLB or LLM and must have served as a High Court Judge for at least 5 years or as a High Court Advocate for at least 10 years. According to the President of India, one might also be qualified to become a Supreme Court judge if he or she is an excellent jurist.

How to Become a High Court Judge in India?

High Courts are courts at the state level. In India, there are 25 high courts. The High Courts of India are the highest courts of appeal in each state and union territory of India. To become a Supreme Court judge, one must meet specific eligibility requirements. Candidates must be an Indian citizens and should have earned an LLB or LLM degree. They must have held a judicial post in India for ten years or been a High Court attorney for ten years.

How to Become a Subordinate Judge in India?

Subordinate courts are the courts at the district level. The following qualifications are required for Subordinate Court Judgeship-

  1. The candidate must hold an LLB/LLM degree.
  2. He or she must have completed the state Public Service Commission test.

How to Become a Judge in India Step-Wise Guide 2023

The procedures outlined below will assist students in understanding what is required to become a Judge-




Step 1

Earn Bachelor's Degree

The candidate must have an undergraduate degree in law, which can be 5 years long, and begin straight after 12th grade or 3 years after graduation.

Step 2

Get into an Internship

Aspirants who begin practicing law under the supervision of legal specialists such as advocates, judges, or APOs, can provide candidates with an extra advantage in terms of skill development.

Step 3

Enroll with the Bar Council

Aspirants must register with the Bar Council since certain states require registration with the Bar Council in order to appear for the test.

Step 4

Prepare for State Public Service Commission examinations

Candidates must prepare for the public service commission test. Applicants can take coaching or study on their own for all of the courses they learned during their graduation.

How to Become a Judge in India: Courses and Certificates 

The following are some of the courses and certificates required to become a judge in India-

  1. Online Business Law Courses
  2. Online Criminal Law Courses
  3. Online Cyber Law Courses
  4. Online Labour Law Courses
  5. Online Law Courses 

Related Article- Corporate Law Courses.

List of Top Best Colleges of Law in India

There are several colleges in India that prepare students to be qualified lawyers and judges. The following are the top law schools in India-

  1. Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur
  2. Jamia Millia Islamia, Delhi
  3. NALSAR University of Law, Hyderabad
  4. National Law School of India University, Bangalore
  5. National Law University, Delhi
  6. National Law University, Rajasthan
  7. Symbiosis Law School, Pune
  8. Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law, Punjab
  9. West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences, Kolkata

Related Articles-

5 Best Lawyers in India

Difference Between Advocate and a Lawyer

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Salary of a Judge in India 2023

Judges' salaries vary depending on their professional advancement, appointment in courts, and other factors. A judge's salary is determined by the type and position of the judge. The following table gives details about the salary of a judge 2023-


Current Pay Scale (INR)

Proposed Pay Scale (INR)

First Class Magistrate / Junior Civil Judge

Rs. 27,700 - 47,700

Rs. 77,840 - 13,6520

First Class Magistrate / Junior Civil Judge 

(after 5 years in the service)

Rs. 33,090 - 45,850

Rs. 92,960 - 1,36,520

First Class Magistrate / Junior Civil Judge 

(5 years after first career progression or during the tenure of IInd after career progression)

Rs. 39,530 - 54,010

Rs. 1,11,000 - 1,63,030

Senior Civil Judge

Rs. 39,530 - 54,010

Rs.1,11,000 - 1,63,030

Senior Civil Judge after 5 years in the service

Rs. 43,690 - 56,470

Rs.1,22,700 - 1,80,200

Senior Civil Judge 

(5 years after first career progression)

Rs. 43,690 - 56,470

Rs.1,22,700 - 1,94,660

District Judge

Rs. 51,550 - 63,070

Rs.1,44,840 - 1,94,660

District Judge 

(Selection Grade after 5 years of Entry Grade)

Rs. 57,700 - 70,290

Rs.1,63,030 - 2,19,090

District Judge 

(3 years after the Selection Grade)

Rs.70,290 - 76,450

Rs.1,99,100 - 2,24,100

Read more about the Difference Between Criminal Law and Civil Law.

A judge's remuneration ranges from INR 45,000 to INR 5,00,000. The remuneration of a judge rises with his or her position, rank, and experience. The judge's remuneration is the highest of any position in this profession.

Experience-Wise Salary of a Judge 2023

Work Experience 

Average Annual Salary (INR)

Entry Level

Rs. 7 – 9 lakh 


Rs. 10 – 15 lakh

Senior Level

Rs. 25 – 30 lakh 

Heirarchy Based Salary of a Judge 2023


Average Starting Salary (INR)

District Court

Rs. 50,000 – 83,000

High Court 

Rs. 1.5 – 2 lakh

Supreme Court 

Rs. 3 – 3.5 lakh 

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Frequently Asked Questions

What kinds of questions are asked in the Mains?

Ans. The questions asked at the mains level are of the subjective variety. Three to four papers are included in the tests.

Is the score from the prelims and mains taken into account at the final level?

Ans. Preliminary exam scores are not used in the final round of selection. Candidates must only pass the preliminary round to advance to the second round. whereas the main scores are used even in the final round.

How much does a judge make in India?

Ans. A district-level judge’s annual remuneration is INR 7,00,000.

What kinds of CLAT questions are there?

Ans. CLAT questions are mostly objective in nature. Numerical Ability, English (with Comprehension), Logical Reasoning, General Awareness, Legal Awareness, and Legal Aptitude are the subjects on which questions are asked.

Is the applicant with a diploma course qualified to be a judge?

Ans. Candidates with diploma courses are ineligible to become judges. Candidates who have completed certificate courses are likewise unable to serve as judges.

How are district judges selected?

Ans. District judges are appointed by the governor in collaboration with the Supreme Court after qualifying for the State Public Service Commission’s Judicial Services Examination.

What are the qualifying marks for the prelims?

Ans. The qualifying mark for the preliminary examination is 60%. It is 55% for applicants in the reserved categories.

How many times does an applicant have to fill out the JSE application form?

Ans. Initially, the candidate must complete the preliminary examination form. If chosen, the candidate must fill out a separate form for the main level of the examination.

Is the JSE curriculum the same in all states?

Ans. Yeah, the curriculum is not the same in all states. It may differ from one state to the next.

Which states administer the Judicial Services Examination?

Ans. Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Goa, Delhi, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Jammu and Kashmir, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, Odisha, Punjab, Rajasthan, Sikkim, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, and West Bengal are the states that hold Judicial Services Examinations.

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