Posting Title: Legal Assistant, G6
Job Code Title: LEGAL ASSISTANT
Department/Office: Office of Administration of Justice
Duty Station: NEW YORK
Posting Period: 11 April 2023 – 10 May 2023
Job Opening Number: 23-Legal Affairs-OAJ-206571-R-New York (O)
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
Organisational Setting and ReportingThis position is located in the Office of Administration of Justice and specifically in the Registry of the United Nations Dispute Tribunal (UNDT) in New York. The position is under the overall supervision of the Principal Registrar and reporting directly to a Legal Officer of the New York Registry (First Reporting Officer) and to the Registrar in New York (Second Reporting Officer). The UNDT hears and decides cases filed by or on behalf of current and former staff members appealing administrative decisions alleged to be in non-compliance with their terms of appointment or contract of employment. The UNDT conducts hearings, issues orders, and renders binding judgments. Both staff members and the Administration have a right to appeal the judgments of the Dispute Tribunal to the United Nations Appeals Tribunal.
Within limits of delegated authority, the Legal Assistant will provide a wide range of general office support, service meetings, and perform other administrative support. Duties will include: – Independently handle a variety of relatively complex verbal and written inquiries from internal or external parties, including providing detailed information on processes and procedures related to a range of legal activities, instruments, issues, etc.; – Draft responses to routine correspondence, notes, and any other routine communications, as required; – Edit and conduct final checks for accuracy of a variety of specialized documentation, legal publications, and related correspondence; – Create, as necessary, and maintain files and databases, including by managing individual case files, maintaining and updating detailed ‘docket sheets’ and ensuring that all related correspondence and other documentation are appropriately filed, registered and followed-up; – Provide technical assistance for meetings arrangements and servicing, including scheduling appointments/meetings/court sessions; – Handle, or refer to the Registrar and/or Legal Officer(s), as appropriate, a variety of verbal and written inquiries from internal and external parties, including providing information on processes and procedures related to the work of the Registry; – Conduct basic research on assigned issues, using existing files and alternative sources (e.g., computer-assisted searches using the internet, intranet or other databases); – Maintain internal databases on cases for tracking and trend analysis; generate a variety of standard and non-standard statistical and other reports from various databases; – Review, record, distribute and/or process all mail and other documents (e.g., orders and judgments); – Follow up on impending actions and deadlines; – Assist in the maintenance of a body of reference files, both paper and electronic, to ensure rapid retrieval of critical information; conduct reference searches upon request; review material and determine appropriate file classification category; identify material for inclusion in files; assist, when needed, in the archiving of documents, storage and retrieval of files; – Generate a variety of standard and non-standard statistical and other reports from various databases; – Perform, when needed, a variety of administrative duties including processing travel requests and related documents, preparation of travel claims, request for office supplies and equipment, etc.; – Provide guidance and training to less experienced staff; – Assist in the archiving of documents; – Perform other duties as assigned.
- Professionalism: Knowledge of organizational legal framework, relevant legal processes, procedures and terminology for review, examination, preparation and processing legal documents. Ability to conduct research using diverse legal research sources (including electronic sources on the internet, intranet and other data bases). Ability to review and synthesize information and present findings and recommendations in a required format. Knowledge of information management, classification and retrieval systems. Ability to show tact and discretion in dealing with high-ranking officials and with confidential matters and materials. Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed. Keeps abreast of available technology; understands applicability and limitation of technology to the work of the office; actively seeks to apply technology to appropriate tasks; shows willingness to learn new technology. 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. Commitment to implement the goal of gender equality by ensuring equal participation and full involvement of women and men in all aspects of work.
- Teamwork: Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; solicits inputs 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 and 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.
EducationHigh school diploma or equivalent is required.
Work ExperienceA minimum of seven (7) years of experience in paralegal work, conference servicing, general office support or related area is required.
LanguagesEnglish and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the post advertised, fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another official United Nations language is desirable.
AssessmentEvaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.
Special NoticeAppointment or assignment against this position is for an initial period of one year. The appointment or assignment and renewal thereof are subject to the availability of the post or funds, budgetary approval or extension of the mandate. At the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the recruitment and employment of staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity, with due regard to geographic diversity. All employment decisions are made on the basis of qualifications and organizational needs. The United Nations is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment of mutual respect. The United Nations recruits and employs staff regardless of gender identity, sexual orientation, race, religious, cultural and ethnic backgrounds or disabilities. Reasonable accommodation for applicants with disabilities may be provided to support participation in the recruitment process when requested and indicated in the application. This position is subject to local recruitment pursuant to staff rule 4.4 of the United Nations Staff Rules. Applicants for positions in the General Service and related categories must be authorized to work for the United Nations in the duty station where the position is located. Eligible applicants selected from outside the duty station are responsible for any expenses in connection with their relocation to the duty station. Staff members subject to local recruitment are not eligible for allowances or benefits exclusively applicable to international recruitment. Passing the Global General Service Test (GGST) is a prerequisite for recruitment consideration in the General Services and related categories in the United Nations Secretariat. Applicants who have not passed the GGST at the time of application may be invited for the test after submitting an application. Staff members who were granted a fixed-term, continuing or permanent appointment as a result of having passed a predecessor test recognized by the Office of Human Resources Management, and who have continuously held such appointments, are not required to take the new test.
United Nations ConsiderationsAccording 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.