Following the Supreme Court Directive in the 2017 Indira Jaising Case, the High Court of Karnataka notified “The High Court of Karnataka( Designation Of Senior Advocates) Rules 2018“.
The High Court of Karnataka is at discretion to designate an advocate as a “Senior Advocate” by virtue of the person’s ability and standing at the Bar. Standing at the Bar refers to the the position of eminence attained by an Advocate at the Bar as a result of his seniority, legal
acumen and high ethical standards maintained by him, both inside and outside the Court.
Apart from the aforementioned discretion, the minimum criteria for designation as a Senior Advocate is that a person has actually practiced as an Advocate for not less than ten years in the High Court of Karnataka or in any Court subordinate to the High Court of Karnataka and has appeared and actually argued in some reported cases or cases involving important questions of law.
MOTION FOR DESIGNATION:
The motion for designation as a Senior Advocate shall be considered on a written proposal made by the Chief Justice or any sitting Judge of the High Court of Karnataka; or the Advocate General for State of Karnataka; or two Senior Advocates practicing in the High Court of Karnataka.
Further any advocate can submit his/her application for the designation provided that he has not applied to any other High Court for the position and that his application has not been rejected by the High Court within a period of two years prior to the date of the proposal or application.
PROCEDURE FOR DESIGNATION:
All applications and written proposals for designation of an Advocate as a Senior Advocate shall be submitted to the Secretariat. After compiling the relevant data and information, the Secretariat will publish the application/proposal received for inviting suggestions or views of other stakeholders to the proposed designation.
Further all of the information is to be placed before a Permanent Committee namely the “Committee for Designation of Senior Advocates” headed by the Chief Justice and consisting of:
(i) two senior-most sitting Judges of the High Court of Karnataka;
(ii) the Advocate General for State of Karnataka;
(iii) a member of the Karnataka High Court Bar, to be nominated by the other members
of the committee.
The Committee is to scrutinize the available information and, if considered necessary, seek response from the aspiring Senior Advocate on the suggestions/views received in relation to his designation.
The committee shall interview the Advocate and shall make its overall assessment on the basis of the point-based format:
All those designated as Senior Advocates are subject to the rules that the High Court of Karnataka or the Bar Council of India may prescribe. The designation may be reviewed and recalled at any point of time by the High Court Of Karnataka.
Read the official notification here.