Judicial Service Exam, Eligibility, Age Limit, Exam Pattern, Syllabus & Preparation

If you are amongst the ones Preparing for Judiciary Exam and looking for a confidante to lead you to the position you are dreaming of, this article is at your rescue !! 

Hello to Our Curious Aspirant !! Hope you are Going well on your path of being a Provident.

First thing First.. The route to success is subjective and not Everyone can succeed walking on the path carved by others without personalising it. There are certain crux you need to know when preparing for the Judiciary Exam and I am here to provide you with the absolute and outright data. Let’s Savvy, Choose, Prepare And Succeed !!

Judiciary Service Exam also know as PCS (J) — Provincial Civil Service-Judicial Exam is door to get into the highly respected Indian judiciary. The examination allows the law graduates to be members of the subordinate judiciary. It is individually arranged by 24 states of India to Hire the officials.

Why Judicial Services?

Do you want to be the part of the sole institution people trust on to impart fair justice ??
Are you more fascinated to the respect and power gained by the profession you opt??
Do you want to contribute for the well-being of your society??
Do you want to be the saviour of the Individual’s right and liberty by imparting fair decisions??

If any of these points instigate the zeal to do it, Judiciary Services is for you !!

Judicial service is a relevant option for the ones aiming to serve the public with a high social-esteem. It offers a secure and safe career along-with a comfortable compensation package.

You must rather consider before taking the plunge into the judicial service that the chances of a member for the lower judiciary to making his way all the way up the ladder is remote. Hence, if you harbour dreams of becoming a Supreme Court judge someday, this may not be the right choice for you.

If you want a secure and safe career and wishing to be in public service and albeit with a comfortable compensation package instead of the vagaries of litigation, then the judicial services is a must considerable career option for you.

How To Know If You Are Ready For It?

Motivation for students preparing for judiciary exam
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Cracking a coveted exam like Judiciary Service Examination is not a cake walk and before plumping for it, make sure you are unreservedly ready for it. 

Make yourself realise that you might have to face Social, Financial, Emotional Disbalance but that should in no way tamper your Mental Health. 

You might not be able to attend every family function or those weekend Parties, You might face financial issue and not live a lavish life, You might be alone with your books and notes burning the midnight lamp oils, you might have to face the typical taunts of relatives about being unemployed and sustain pressures BUT never let them effect you to the core. 

Be Consistent, Work Smart and the Success will be yours.

Eligibility Criteria for Judiciary Service Exam / PCSJ Exam

When Considering Qualification, Judiciary Services election is done in two levels.

  • Lower Judiciary Services- You need to hold a degree in LLB, enrol as an advocate under the Advocates’ Act 1961 to be eligible for appearing in the Examination. No working experience is required and even final year students can also appear for the exam for the Lower Judiciary Services.
  • Higher Judiciary Services– You must be graduate in law and have a minimum seven years of litigating practice for appearing for the Higher Judiciary Services Exam.

Age limit for appearing for judiciary Service exam

You must be graduate in law for Lower Judiciary Services and have a minimum seven years of litigating practice for appearing for the Higher Judiciary Services Exam.

  • The Age Eligibility Criteria for appearing in Judicial Service Exam differs for different states. It varies from 21 as lower limit to 35 years as upper limit.
  • Nationality- You must be a citizen of India.

Number of Allowed Attempts and Age Criteria for Judiciary Exam

  • For General category, Maximum four attempts are allowed upto 30 years of age.
  • For OBC category, Maximum seven attempts are allowed upto 33 years of age.
  • For SC/ST category, no maximum number of allowed attempts for appearing in PCSJ upto 35 years of age.

Statistics of the appearing, qualifying Candidates of PCSJ

Let us have a look at the hierarchial representation of the candidates for PCSJ.

Every Year 60,000 to 70,000 candidates enroll for the prelims of PCSJ while only 10% of them, i.e. 6,000 to 7,000 qualify it to the Mains.

Approximately 1000 students qualify Mains and are called for the interview amongst whom, approx. 

600 candidates make it to the merit list. 

Only 1% of the total enrolled candidates succeed and hence, not making it to the merit list should nowhere effect you emotionally or blight your determination. You shouldn’t target yourself as a loser even in the worst of the cases.  

Stay determined !! Even if you don’t qualify it or make it to the merit, the knowledge you gained by preparing will open many profession doors for you.

Judicial Service Exam Pattern and Syllabus by states

The Judicial Service Exam is conducted under 3 phases:

Phase 1: Prelims exam

It is an Objective (MCQs), qualifying type exam requiring minimum 60% marks for general category while 55% marks for the reserved category to qualify prelims and manoeuvre to Mains.

Preliminary Exam comprises of the questions from General Knowledge; Current affairs; English Language- proficiency and Aptitude; IPC, CPC, CrPC, Indian Evidence Law; Contractual and Tort Law; Constitutional Law; Transfer of Property Law. Barring from them, some states include certain other topics as follow:

  • Bihar includes Hindu and Muslim personal laws, laws of trust, principle of equity, commercial law, specific relief act, elementary general science, administrative law.
  • Arunachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir , Maharashtra , Manipur and Nagaland encompasses Proficiency in the official language of Assam.
  • Chhattisgarh considers accommodation Control Act, registration act, Chhattisgarh land Revenue Code, Court fees Act and specific relief acts.
  • Delhi includes principles governing Arbitration law And the partnership act.
  • Madhya Pradesh includes accommodation Control Act and Maharashtra land Revenue Code.
  • Kerala also includes Kerala building act.
  • Goa takes in the consideration Sales of goods act, land laws of Goa, the prevention of atrocities Act

Phase 2: Mains Exam

It is subjective type of exam. Different states’ syllabus for the The Judicial Service Examination varies and they include different topics and subjects as follows:

  • Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Nagaland, Mizoram, Maharashtra, and Jammu & Kashmir
    Paper I: English evaluation test
    Essay, precise writing, Grammar (100 marks, 2 hours)
    Paper II; General Knowledge evaluation test
    Objective type test for Aptitude (100 marks,2 hours)
    Paper III: Fundamental Law knowledge evaluation test
    Transfer of Property, Civil procedure code, Indian Contract Act, Constitution of India (100 marks,2 hours)
    Paper IV: Law Evaluation Test
    Indian Penal Code, CrPC, Law of Torts, Indian Evidence Act (100 marks,2 hours)
  • Bihar
    I – Compulsory Paper:
    It comprises question from General knowledge and current affairs (150 marks), Science- Elementary level (100marks), Fundamental Hindi (100 marks ), Fundamental English(100 marks ) and Law of Evidence and Procedure( 150 marks)
    Hindi and English are compulsory, qualifying papers.
    Part II- Optional paper:
    It comprises questions from Constitutional Law of India and England(150 marks), Hindu and Muslim Law(150 marks), laws related to Transfer of property(150 marks) , Principles of Equity(150 marks), Law of trusts and Specific Relief Act(150 marks), Law of Contract and Torts(150 marks) and Commercial law(150 marks)
  • Chhattisgarh
    It comprehends question of :
    Framing of issues and writing judgment in Civil Cases (40 marks)
    Framing of charges and writing of judgment in Criminal Cases (40marks)
    English to Hindi and Hindi to English Translation for (10 marks)
  • Delhi
    Paper I- General Knowledge and Language:
    It has questions from Current affairs, Essay, Translation, and precise writing for (250 marks)
    Paper II- Civil Law I:
    It has questions from Indian Contract Act, Indian Sale of Goods Act, Indian Partnership Act, Specific Relief Act, Hindu Law, Muslim Law, Delhi Rent control Act and Law of Torts (200 marks)
    Paper III- Civil law II:
    It has questions from Civil Procedure Code, Law of evidence, Law of Limitation and Law of Registration (200 marks)
    Paper III- Criminal Law:
    Criminal Procedure Code, Indian penal code and Indian Evidence Act (200 marks)
  • Goa
    Paper I:
    It comprises of the questions from The Indian Contract act, 1872, The Specific Relief Act, 1963, The Limitation Act, 1963, Sales of Goods Act, 1930, Indian Partnership Act, 1932, The Code of Civil Procedure Code, 1908, Transfer of Property Act, 1882, The Easement Act,1882, Family Laws in Goa , Land Laws in Goa
    Paper II:
    It comprises of the questions from The code of Criminal procedure Code, 1973, The Indian Penal Code, 1860 The Evidence Act,1872, The Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989, The Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881, Essay on Current Legal Topics
  • Haryana and Punjab
    Paper I- Civil Law I
    It has questions from Code of Civil procedure, Punjab Courts Act, Indian Contract Act, Indian Sale of Goods Act, Indian Partnership Act, Specific Relief Act for (200 marks)
    Paper II-Civil Law II
    It has questions from Hindu Law, Muslim Law and Customary Law, Law of Registration and Limitations (200 marks)
    Paper III- Criminal Law
    It has questions from Indian Penal Code, Code of Criminal procedure, Indian Evidence Act (200 marks)
    Paper IV- English
    It has questions from four following topics:
    Essay (25 marks)
    Words and phrases (25 marks)
    Comprehension (25 marks)
    Corrections (25 marks)
    Paper V- Language:
    Questions from Hindi in Devanagari Script (150 marks)
  • Uttar Pradesh
    Paper I- General knowledge:
    It has questions related to History of India and Indian Culture, Geography of India, Indian Polity, Indian economy, international affairs
    Paper II- Law:
    It has questions from the topic Jurisprudence, International Organizations, Indian constitution, Transfer of property, Indian Evidence Act, Code of criminal procedure, Code of Civil procedure, Contract laws

Phase 3: interview

Qualified Students are called for the Interview Round in which the candidates are assessed on their Overall Personality and Intelligence.
The Candidates’ Logical, Legal Reasoning; Basic Knowledge; Current Affairs’ awareness; and Presence of mind is tested.

Career In Indian Judiciary

Indian Judiciary is a structured system to deal with the complications faced by the general public of the society. It is a good career opportunity for law graduates who are inclined towards public service and have faith in the system of justice and want to serve their nation in the most apt way.
Candidates can build a career in Public Services by clearing the Judicial Services Exam and performing their jobs by getting appointed at the following positions:

  • Magistrate
  • District and Sessions Judge
  • Sub-Magistrate
  • Public Prosecutor
  • Attorney General
  • Solicitors
  • Advocate General
  • Notary
  • Oath Commissioner

States Conducting PCSJs

Jurisdiction Service examination is held individually by 24 states of India. The name of the examination alongwith its  official website for reference is provided below ;

Supporting materials for your Preparation of Judicial Service Examination

Other than the books by NCERT (Social Studies class 6th to 10th) , there are some suggested supporting study material that can surely work as aider in your preparation 

Edzorb Law (App)- Refer this application for relevant supporting contents and Self-Evaluation tests (
Attend Free Daily Quiz For Judiciary Exam Preparation – Click here

  • For GK, Competition Success Review is a great option for updates on current affairs.
  • General Studies by Mc Graw
  • The key to Indian Practice by Sir Dinshaw F. Mulla
  • Indian Politics by the Writer- Lakshmikanth
  • Jurisprudence and Legal Theory by VD Mahajan
  • Kelkar’s IPC Pillai’s is the best guide for interview
  • Ancient History by the Writer- D.Kausambi’s
  • Intellectual Property Rights by Ahuja
  • The Law of Torts by Ratanlal and Dhirajlal
  • Indian Conveyancer by Mogha
  • Interpretation of Statutes by Vepa P Sarathi
  • CPC by Justice C.K. Tatwani
  • Property Law by Dr. Poonam Pradhan Saxena
  • Company Law by Avtar Singh
  • Telegram channel – https://t.me/edzorblaw

Tips for Preparing for Judicial Services Exam

  • The first and the foremost thing; Stay Consistent. Trust your decision, Capabilities. There are going to be the blue days with clouds of doubts over your head which Only your self-believe can eradicate to let your future-career shine.
  • Be Strategic; There should be different approach for the different stages of the preparation. Example, the candidate should have exhaustive knowledge of provisions of various laws for the preliminary examination while the mains examination requires a selective study pattern on the grounds of the frequently asked questions.
  • Watch your Actions; Think about what you have to focus on, your controlled actions while things not to pertubate about, uncontrolled actions.
Explanation of My circle of control - Edzorb Law
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  • Stay Updated; Visit Live Law websites frequently or install apps for legal current affairs.
  • Avoid Passive Reading; The regular method of learning could cause chaos causing you to astral . Use Edzorb Law App to access different modes to attain finer and more efficient particulars.
  • Highlight, Use sticky-notes, make charts and Tables. Visualisation helps you to remember better and for a longer period of time.
  • Spend some quality time reading law journals, reports by courts, magazines, newspapers daily. It could act as catalyst in the process of your preparation.
  • Solve the previous years’ question papers of different states. It will help in developing time-management skills and understanding the exam pattern.
  • Attempt Mock-tests. Self-Evaluation is very important. Edzob Law application could be a great choice for attempting ample range of the self evaluation mocks tests. It’ll also train your mind accordingly and prepare you for your The-Day.
  • Seek Guidance- If you know a judicial officer recently been selected, seek for their guidance as they will provide you with practical implementations that can be very helpful for your preparation.
  • Try to analyse the trend of the questions from the previous year question papers and figure out the pattern of the questions.
  • Revise as many times as possible till it gets etched in your memory.
  • Relax your mind. Do Meditation, eat healthy, take care of your health. Only a Sound body and mind can ace any competition.

The World will be there to guide you but you have to carve your own path. Wakeup each day with the thought of succeeding and imagine the glory you’ll have succeeding the achieved Dream-Position.

Explanation on Habits of Successful People - Edzorb Law
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Never go Backward, Attempt and do it with all your Passion. Determination is the Power !!

All The Best !!

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