Office of Legal Affairs
UN Office of Legal Affairs, New York
Posting Title: LEGAL OFFICER, P3
Job Code Title: LEGAL OFFICER
Department/Office: Office of Legal Affairs
Duty Station: NEW YORK
Posting Period: 18 October 2022 – 01 December 2022
Job Opening Number: 22-Legal Affairs-OLA-192980-R-New York (X)
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
Organisational Setting and Reporting
This position is located in the Office of the Legal Counsel (OLC), Office of Legal Affairs (OLA). The incumbent reports to a senior Legal Officer.
Within the limits of delegated authority, the Legal Officer may be responsible for one or more of the following duties: Handles a range of issues related to public international law, including the interpretation and application of constitutive, legislative and other instruments governing United Nations activities and operations, in consultation with senior Legal Officers.
Conducts extensive legal research and analysis and prepare studies, comparative studies, briefs, reports and correspondence.
Undertakes basic or extensive review of legal documents, instruments, or other material; identifies important issues, similarities, and inconsistencies, etc.
Prepares or assists in the preparation of drafts of background papers, studies, reports, legislative texts and commentaries on those texts, etc.
Prepares or assists in the preparation of legal opinions/advice on a wide range of public international law issues, including issues arising under the United Nations Charter and General Assembly resolutions and decisions, involving, inter alia, questions relating to privileges and immunities, institutional and procedural questions related to the UN system, treaty law and practice, procedural issues arising during meetings of United Nations organs, and the constitutional law of the Organization.
Prepares or assists in the preparation, and negotiates or assists in the negotiation, of agreements with governments
Provides guidance to more junior staff.
Performs other duties as assigned.
- Professionalism: Knowledge of a range of fields of public international law, including the Charter, the law and practice of the United Nations and the law of privileges and immunities. Familiarity with the institutions and organization of the United Nations system. Knowledge of, and ability to apply, legal principles, concepts and procedures and terminology for review, examination, and processing of a range of legal documents. Knowledge of various legal research sources, including electronic, and ability to conduct research and analyze information on a wide range of legal issues. Ability to interpret and apply legislative instruments, develop and present results, recommendations, and opinions clearly and concisely. Ability to draft legal papers and work under pressure. Ability to apply good legal judgment in the context of assignments given. Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.
- Teamwork: Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others; places team agenda before personal agenda; supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position; shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings.
- Planning& Organizing: Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently.
Advanced university degree (Masters or equivalent) in public international law. A first-level university degree in law in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.
A minimum of five years of progressively responsible professional experience in law, including legal analysis, research and writing, is required.
At least two years of professional service with the legal office of a Government department or ministry or of the secretariat of an international organization is required.
Experience in professional legal work relating to international law governing privileges and immunities is desirable.
Experience in professional legal work advising on procedural issues arising in international intergovernmental bodies is desirable.
At least two years of professional experience working with the UN or a related intergovernmental organization is desirable.
English and French are the working languages of the UN Secretariat. For the post advertised, fluency in English is required. Knowledge of French is desirable. Knowledge of another UN official language is an advantage.
Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.
This job opening is advertised to fill a temporarily vacant position during the absence of the regular incumbent for a period of one year or longer. The regular incumbent is entitled to return to this position at the expiry of the temporary vacancy period. If the regular incumbent exercises the right to return, the appointment or temporary assignment or promotion of the candidate selected for this job opening will not be renewed or extended.
The selection process for this job opening will be conducted pursuant to ST/AI/2010/3 on the “Staff Selection System” and include the compliance review process by a review body described in staff rule 4.15. In case of selection, a staff member of the United Nations Secretariat who meets the definition of “internal candidate” in staff rule 4.10 will be placed on a temporary assignment if he or she holds the same grade as the job opening; and a temporary promotion if he or she holds a lower grade than the job opening. If the regular incumbent vacates the position during such temporary assignment or promotion, the selected staff member will be laterally assigned, promoted or transferred to the position without further selection process under ST/AI/2010/3.
For this position, applicants from the following Member States, which are unrepresented or underrepresented in the UN Secretariat as of 31 July 2022, are strongly encouraged to apply: Afghanistan, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahrain, Belize, Brunei Darussalam, Cabo Verde, Central African Republic, China, Comoros, Cuba, Cyprus, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Djibouti, Dominica, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Grenada, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Israel, Japan, Kiribati, Kuwait, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Malta, Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Monaco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nauru, Norway, Oman, Palau, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Solomon Islands, South Sudan, Timor-Leste, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, United Arab Emirates, United States of America, Vanuatu.
The United Nations Secretariat is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance and geographical diversity in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.
United Nations Considerations
According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of international human rights law, violations of international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term “sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.
Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.
The paramount consideration in the appointment, transfer, or promotion of staff shall be the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. By accepting an offer of appointment, United Nations staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and assignment by him or her to any activities or offices of the United Nations in accordance with staff regulation 1.2 (c). In this context, all internationally recruited staff members shall be required to move periodically to discharge new functions within or across duty stations under conditions established by the Secretary-General.
Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the Manual for the Applicant, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.
The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. No amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to reference checks to verify the information provided in the application.
Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.
THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CHARGE A FEE AT ANY STAGE OF THE RECRUITMENT PROCESS (APPLICATION, INTERVIEW MEETING, PROCESSING, OR TRAINING). THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CONCERN ITSELF WITH INFORMATION ON APPLICANTS’ BANK ACCOUNTS.