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civil judge exam pakistan

Written by Hafsa Ammar 8:15 pm Articles, Pakistan, Published Content

A Guide to the Civil Judge Exam in Pakistan

This is a guide to the civil judge exam, which is similar to the civil services exam (CSS), in that it is competitive, and if passed, one can get a high-ranking position in the system for which one would have had to put in years of one’s career otherwise. It is conducted annually by the provincial governments and is set to help one become a Civil Judge cum Magistrate.
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Hafsa Ammar is a graduate of the National Defence University, Islamabad. Her areas of expertise are narrative building and propaganda warfare, centered around the Soviet Union and modern-day Russia.

The civil judge exam of Pakistan for the year 2023 has already been conducted (24th June-14th July) and the date sheet for the year 2024 will be updated next year. To prepare for the competitive exam, one should be aware of its subjects, designated syllabus, and mark sheet breakdown.

Age Limit

Individuals are eligible to take the civil judge exam if they are older than 22 or younger than 35.

Salary

The expected salary is that of a 17-grade officer with added allowances.

Submissions 2023

Quota

Although the total seats are not fixed and the number of allocations depends on the administration, there is in fact a dedicated quota set apart for both differently-abled people and minorities.

03% Quota for differently-abled people; expanded further in the Disabled Persons (Employment and Rehabilitation) Ordinance of 1981 which was last amended in 2015.

05% Quota for minorities, as underscored by the Punjab Government in Notification SOR-III (S&GAD)1-35/93 from 2010.

Eligibility

An individual is eligible to sit for the civil judge exam if he/she has a valid degree in LLB from a reputable institution, has at least 2 years of advocate experience, and has a high court license. One would become ineligible to sit in the exam if they were to fail the bar exam thrice. 

Qualifying Exam

The qualifying exam is an objective test of 100 marks, based on the subject matter of criminal law, civil law, English, and general knowledge – 25 MCQs per subject. Once the candidate has cleared the qualifying exam, they move to the written test.

Written Test

The written test encompasses eight subjects.

  • Civil Law I – 100 Marks
  • Civil Law II – 100 Marks
  • Criminal Law – 100 Marks
  • General Law – 100 Marks
  • English – 100 Marks
  • Urdu – 100 Marks
  • General Knowledge – 100 Marks
  • Viva Voce – 300 Marks

Syllabus

There are suggested topics for every subject in the examination.

-Civil Law I

  • The Contract Act 1872
  • The Guardian and Wards Act 1890; Relevant Provisions of High Court Rules and Orders
  • The Limitation Act 1908
  • Muslim Family Laws in Pakistan
  • Punjab Pre-Emption Act 1991
  • Punjab Rented Premises Act 2009

-Civil Law II

  • The Code of Civil Procedure 1908
  • The General Clauses Act 1897
  • The Court Fee Act 1870
  • The Registration Act 1908
  • The Specific Relief Act 1877
  • The Punjab Land Revenue Act 1967
  • The West Pakistan Land Revenue Rules 1968

-Criminal Law

  • Pakistan Penal Code 1860
  • The Code of Criminal Procedure 1896
  • The Juvenile Justice System Act 2018
  • Police Order and Rules

-General Law

  • Qanoon-e-Shahadat Order 1984
  • Rules and Orders of Lahore High Court (II and III)
  • The Punjab Civil Courts Ordinance 1962
  • The Constitution of Pakistan, 1973

-English

  • Composition and Comprehension
  • Literature
  • Grammar
  • Idioms
  • Essay

-Urdu

  • Literature
  • Grammar
  • Comprehension
  • Essay
  • Translation of English Legal Terms into Urdu

-General Knowledge

  • Everyday Science
  • General Knowledge
  • Pakistan Affairs
  • Islamiat (Muslims)
  • Ethics (Non-Muslims)
  • International Relations
  • Contemporary Political Affairs

Passing Marks

40% marks in every individual paper and 50% in aggregate counts as passing marks for the civil judge exam in Pakistan.

Psychological and Aptitude Test

Once you clear the written test, you have to appear for a psychological and aptitude test that assesses your attitude, personality, and character and determines whether you are suitable for the role.

Viva Voce

The viva is conducted at the very end once you have passed all other examinations. It is essentially a panel interview. The questions can range from a number of topics including but not limited to your hobbies, moral values, ethics, reason for interest in the civil judge exam, and more.

There can even be questions about significant historical events or famous legal arguments. The board forms the viva panel and assesses the candidate on the grounds of intellect, strength of character, confidence, and general presence of mind.

{This information has been taken from the Civil Judge Exam Advertisement No. 01/2020/CJM(R&E) printed in the News by the Lahore High Court for the year 2020}

Role of a Civil Judge

A civil judge is in charge of civil cases that can include issues of property rights, contract negotiations, and family disputes including but not limited to custody, divorce, and separation of assets, and more. These cases can be brought to court by individuals, businesses, or other organizations/governmental institutions.

A civil judge has to be able to adjudicate between the conflicting parties, interpret Pakistan’s civil laws in accordance with the circumstance, issue judgments, schedule hearings, and aim to resolve the conflict with justice and integrity.

Role of a Judicial Magistrate

Judicial officers typically work in the lower levels of the judiciary. They must handle preliminary hearings, grant bail, sanction search warrants, preside over a court case involving minor violations or petty crime, and conduct inquiries. A judicial magistrate majorly handles criminal cases and other matters related to it such as summary trials.

Helpful Hints

Some easy tips and tricks to help prepare for the civil judge exam in Pakistan have been shared by previously successful applicants. These include figuring out a self-study schedule; academies and instructors can only take you so far, so what truly makes a difference is self-discipline and motivation.

Become a voracious reader – the newspaper, recommended textbooks, legal proceedings, and famous case studies as their arguments can be quoted in the examination. Go over past papers and strengthen your knowledge base.


If you want to submit your articles, research papers, and book reviews, please check the Submissions page.

The views and opinions expressed in this article/paper are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial position of Paradigm Shift.

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