Sri Lanka Law College

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Sri Lanka Law College
SL Law College logo.png
Motto Latin: Fiat justitia
Motto in English
Let justice be done
Principal Indira Samarasinghe PC
244 Hulftsdorp Street
, ,
6°56′08″N79°51′35″E / 6.935672°N 79.859682°E / 6.935672; 79.859682 Coordinates: 6°56′08″N79°51′35″E / 6.935672°N 79.859682°E / 6.935672; 79.859682

Sri Lanka Law College (formerly Ceylon Law College) is a Law College on Hulftsdorp Street in Colombo, Sri Lanka, established in 1874 under the then-one-year-old Council of Legal Education in order to impart a formal legal education to those who wished to become advocates and proctors in Ceylon. [1] The main building of the college was constructed in 1911. [2]


Law education

In order to practice law in Sri Lanka, a Lawyer must be admitted and enrolled as an Attorney-at-Law of the Supreme Court. To receive admission to the bar, a law student must complete law exams held by the Sri Lanka Law College.

The course of study for law students at Sri Lanka Law College does not grant any degree or certification; however, at completion of studies, examination and a period of apprenticeship, qualifies individuals for admission to the profession as Attorney at Law. Graduates holding LLB degrees from the University of Colombo, the Open University of Sri Lanka or any other Local University or selected Partner University such as University of London, will be required to complete several examinations and the period of apprenticeship to become an Attorney-at-Law by receiving admission to the bar.

The SLLC carries out several post-attorney courses including an LLM from the University of Wales and post-attorney diplomas in intellectual property law and international trade law.

Since the late 1980s, admission has been from a very competitive entrance exam due to the high number of applicants. However, young Members of Parliament without higher educational qualifications receive direct admission without setting for the entrance exam.

Student Unions

The Law Students' Union of Sri Lanka (LSU)

The first president of the Law Students' Union was Sir Ponnambalam Ramanathan, KC, CMG Sir Ponnambalam Ramanathan (1851-1930).jpg
The first president of the Law Students' Union was Sir Ponnambalam Ramanathan, KC, CMG

The Law Students' Union was founded in 1894 as the Ceylon Law Students' Union. The first president was Sir Ponnambalam Ramanathan, KC, CMG. The first meeting was held on June 13, 1894. With the implementation of the new rules in 1937, a student was elected as president of the L.S.U, rather than the previous practice where an experienced lawyer was appointed to that post. In 1970, the rules were further amended to give the student community greater control over their own affairs. Since that time another amendment was made creating the posts of Social and Welfare Secretary and that of editorial assistant. However, this amendment has not been put down in writing, and has been carried out by convention.

In 1991, the union amended its rules further to create the posts of Education Secretary and Assistant Education Secretary in order to protect and safeguard the educational necessities of the student community. The rules were also translated into Sinhala by the Law Students' Union of 1989 and 1991. In 1995 the rules were amended which resulted changing the name to the Law Students' Union of Sri Lanka. This amendment also created the law students' sports fund.

The Law Students' Sinhala Union of Sri Lanka (LSSU)

Sri Lanka Law College, which was established in 1874, is one of the oldest and leading professional educational institution of Sri Lanka and operating within it is the Law Students' Sinhala Union which can be introduced as one of the leading student unions with a history of dedicated service to law students for the past 73 years.

The law student Sinhala Union was established in 1943, in the wake of a renaissance against colonialism, when people irrespective of their race or religion joining hands together in the struggle for independence. Thus it was this Union that spearheaded the law students' contribution to this movement. The Law Students' Sinhala Union which was hence established was formalised and re-structured as an organised student union by Dr. C. Ananda Grero.

Notable alumni

As one of the oldest professional training bodies it has trained all the lawyers in the country who have served not only in the field of law but also various other fields such as politics, social reforms, commerce, trade unions and religion. For instance, two of the five Executive Presidents and Prime Minister Ranil Wickramasinghe had their higher education and training at the Sri Lanka Law College.

J.R. Jayawardene Junius Richard Jayawardana (1906-1996).jpg
J.R. Jayawardene
Mahinda Rajapaksa Mahinda Rajapaksa.jpg
Mahinda Rajapaksa

Partner universities

See also

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  1. Historical Overview of Education in Sri Lanka, Ministry of Education Archived 2007-07-16 at the Wayback Machine
  2. "Principal's address on Award Ceremony 2011" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-07-10.
  3. The rise of Sinhala in our courts – Part II