Find Legal expertise in Pakistan
- Legal System
Pakistan has been ruled by different cultures throughout its history, which has resulted in a mixed, but constant, legal tradition. The most influential of these rulers have been the Mughal Empire and, more recently, the British Empire. The result of these influences is that Pakistan’s legal system is structured around English Common Law as well as Islamic law. The highest court in the country is the Supreme Court, while in each province a High Court is the apex of legal appeal. A federal Shariah court is responsible for judgements regarding Islamic law and may strike down legislation that is considered contrary to Islam. Courts lower down in the structure include magistrates’ courts, district and session courts and specialised tribunals.
Pakistan’s legal profession is fused, so there is no distinction made between advocates and attorneys or barristers and solicitors in court. In accordance with the Legal Practitioners and Bar Councils Act (1973) all lawyers are styled as advocates to which there are four levels, with a ‘senior advocate of the Supreme Court’ right at the top and at the lowest entry level an ‘advocate’.
Advocates require a degree from a university anywhere recognised by the Pakistan Bar Council, experience and the passing of a bar exam. The Pakistan Bar Council recognises hundreds of universities all over the world including some in Pakistan, India, UK and US. Foreign lawyers can practice in the country within certain conditions. The United Law Company in Lahore runs a Foreign Lawyers Programme which encourages young foreign lawyers to come to Pakistan on secondment.
The Supreme Court Bar Association of Pakistan is an association specifically for the Supreme Court of Pakistan and is a subsection of the Pakistan Bar Council.
In 2011, the Chambers Asia Pacific Awards shortlisted the following law firms as the best in Pakistan: Cornelius, Lane & Mufti, Haidermota & Co, Kabraji & Talibuddin, Liaquat Merchant Associates, Orr, Dignam & Co and Vellani & Vellani.
Information from the World Economic Forum, The Global Competitiveness Report 2012-2013
Legal rights index
Efficiency of legal framework in settling disputes
Efficiency of legal framework in challenging regulations
Property rights (including financial assets)
Intellectual property protection
|Legal organisations in Pakistan|
|ARK Law Associates||