What is Long Call Lawyer in Malaysia?

In Malaysia, the term “long call” or “long call lawyer” refers to the formal ceremony where a law graduate is officially admitted and enrolled as an Advocate and Solicitor of the High Court of Malaya. This ceremony is a significant milestone in a Malaysian lawyer’s career, marking their transition from a law graduate or pupil-in-chambers to a fully qualified lawyer.

The process typically involves the presentation of the candidate to the High Court by a senior member of the bar. The petitioner (law graduate) is required to take an oath and is then formally admitted to the bar. This ceremony is often attended by friends and family of the petitioner, and it’s a moment of pride and achievement in a Malaysian lawyer’s career.

Qualification Requirements

Before being eligible for the long call, a law graduate must complete a law degree, pass the Certificate in Legal Practice (CLP) and undergo a period of pupillage or chambering. This practical training period usually lasts for nine months and is undertaken under the supervision of a senior lawyer.

Pupillage or Chambering

The pupillage is an apprenticeship-like period where the graduate gains hands-on experience in various aspects of legal practice. It’s a phase where theoretical knowledge is applied in real legal environments, in the journey of becoming a lawyer in Malaysia:

Duration and Structure

The pupillage or chambering period in Malaysia typically lasts for nine months. During this time, a law graduate, referred to as a “pupil,” works under the supervision of a practicing lawyer, known as the “master.” The master is usually an experienced member of the legal profession, often with at least seven years of practice.


The primary objective of pupillage is to provide practical, hands-on training to law graduates. This period is designed to bridge the gap between academic legal studies and the practical aspects of lawyering. It’s a time for pupils to learn about the day-to-day realities of legal practice, including client management, court procedures, legal drafting, and professional ethics.

Exposure to Various Fields

During their chambering period, pupils are typically exposed to a wide range of legal areas. This might include civil litigation, criminal law, corporate law, family law, and conveyancing. The idea is to give them a broad overview of different legal practices to better inform their future career choices.

Training and Mentorship

The master offers guidance, mentorship, and training. Pupils often assist their masters in various tasks such as researching legal issues, drafting documents, attending court proceedings, and observing client meetings. This mentorship is for the professional growth of the pupil.

Assessment and Evaluation

Throughout the pupillage period, pupils are assessed on their performance and ability to handle legal tasks. This assessment may include evaluations of written work, research skills, and overall professional conduct. In some cases, pupils may also be required to complete a portfolio or logbook detailing their experiences and learnings during this period.

Networking and Professional Development

Pupillage is also an opportunity for law graduates to start building their professional network. Interacting with lawyers, clients, and other legal professionals helps in developing contacts that can be valuable throughout their careers.

Post-Chambering Requirements

At the end of the pupillage period, a pupil must apply for admission to the bar. This involves the submission of a petition to the High Court and undergoing the long call ceremony, as previously described. Successful completion of the pupillage is a prerequisite for this process.

Transition to Practice

After completing the pupillage and the formal admission to the bar, the individual is fully qualified to practice law in Malaysia. This transition from a pupil to a practising lawyer is a significant milestone and marks the beginning of their professional career in the legal field.

The pupillage period is a formative experience for law graduates in Malaysia that lays the foundation for their future practice and shapes their understanding of the legal profession.

Petition for Admission

After completing their pupillage, the graduate must file a petition for admission to the High Court, which includes various supporting documents like certificates of legal education, a certificate of completion of pupillage, and character references.

Advocate and Solicitor

Once admitted, the individual becomes an Advocate and Solicitor of the High Court of Malaya. In Malaysia, lawyers are both advocates (representing clients in court) and solicitors (handling legal documentation, advice, and out-of-court matters). Read about the differences between an advocate and a solicitor.

Continuing Professional Development

After admission, lawyers in Malaysia are required to continue their professional development. This includes keeping up to date with legal developments, attending seminars, and being involved in other educational activities.

Professional Conduct and Ethics

Strict professional and ethical standards bind lawyers. They must adhere to the rules and regulations set by the Malaysian Bar, which governs the conduct of legal professionals in the country.


The long call ceremony is not just a formality but a significant event that symbolizes a lawyer’s readiness to undertake the responsibilities and privileges of the legal profession.

Leave a Comment