Temporary Appointment (364 days): Legal Affairs Specialist, P-4, Office of Executive Director – PAT 126997, TA

  • Location:
  • Salary:
    $77,326 - $100,881 / YEAR
  • Job type:
  • Posted:
    1 month ago
  • Category:
    Legal Affairs, Management and Strategy
  • Deadline:


UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential.

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.

And we never give up.

For every child, commitment. 

The Legal Affairs Specialist in New York will advise internal clients on UNICEF’s banking arrangements, common premises and common services arrangements, private sector fundraising and digital payments systems, financial transactions, as well as supporting other business units globally on a broad spectrum of legal matters ranging from commercial contracts,  disputes, and institutional matters. The Lead, Legal Affairs Specialist in New York will report to the Chief, who reports to the General Counsel.

The Legal Affairs Specialist will independently, working closely with other team members and under the supervision of the Chief

How can you make a difference?

Members of the UNICEF Legal Office are expected to be open-minded and resourceful, responsive, and dynamic, transparent and approachable, and clear and authoritative. The overall direction of the Legal Office is set by the General Counsel in New York.

The Legal Affairs Specialist will is expected to work autonomously, collaborating regularly with other team members, all under the supervision of the Chief.

Manage a large portfolio of legal projects and files, ranging across the organization including, by way of illustration:

  1. Act as the lead lawyer on:
  • banking agreements with UNICEF’s financial counterparts;
  • legal agreements for cash transfer for beneficiaries in humanitarian settings;
  • private sector fundraising and digital payments (payment service providers);
  • leases for UNICEF offices globally;
  • partnerships with governments, international financial institutions, global philanthropic organizations and foundations, civil society organizations and private sector entities to structure financial contributions and programme implementation;
  • advising on UNICEF’s internal financial policy development and interpretation; and
  • dispute resolution with regard to disputes between external entities and UNICEF.
  1. Collaborate closely with teams across the organization, at the headquarters / divisional level, and at the regional and country office level, in a wide range of development and humanitarian contexts.
  2. Develop and provide training and capacity building to internal divisions and offices teams across UNICEF; proactively share knowledge with other team members.
  3. Support projects managed by the Office (legal knowledge management, office governance, case management) throughout their entire lifecycle, including design & planning, stakeholder engagement, monitoring & evaluation.
  4. Take on other tasks and duties as required.

To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have…

  • A minimum of a post-graduate university law degree (for example. LL. B post-graduate; LL.M.; J.D.) in a relevant field of law (e.g. international law, commercial law) or equivalent is required; or, at the discretion of the General Counsel, a first-level university degree in combination with an additional two years of qualifying work experience may be accepted in lieu of an advanced university degree.
  • A minimum of eight (8) years of progressively responsible experience in the practice of law in a relevant field is required (e.g. international law; commercial law).  Experience in a law firm, in private practice or as in-house counsel, or in an international organization (UN and related organizations, international financial institutions, development banks, regional banks)  is highly desirable.
  • Fluency in English is required. Proficiency in another language, particularly one of the other official languages of the United Nations (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian, Spanish) is also desirable.
  • A constructive and client-oriented approach to resolution of problems is required.
  • Excellent research, legal writing and drafting skills are required.
  • Excellent verbal communication and negotiation skills, excellent interpersonal skills with staff at all levels, and the ability to work with utmost discretion in handling sensitive and confidential matters are required.

For every Child, you demonstrate…

UNICEF’s Core Values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust and Accountability and Sustainability (CRITAS) underpin everything we do and how we do it. Get acquainted with Our Values Charter: UNICEF Values

UNICEF competencies required for this post are…

  • Demonstrates Self Awareness and Ethical Awareness (2)
  • Works Collaboratively with others (2)
  • Builds and Maintains Partnerships (2)
  • Innovates and Embraces Change (2)
  • Thinks and Acts Strategically (2)
  • Drives to achieve impactful results (2)
  • Manages ambiguity and complexity (2)

During the recruitment process, we test candidates following the competency framework. Familiarize yourself with our competency framework and its different levels: competency framework here.

UNICEF is here to serve the world’s most disadvantaged children and our global workforce must reflect the diversity of those children. The UNICEF family is committed to include everyone, irrespective of their race/ethnicity, age, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, nationality, socio-economic background, or any other personal characteristic.
We offer a wide range of benefits to our staff, including paid parental leave, breastfeeding breaks and reasonable accommodation for persons with disabilities. UNICEF strongly encourages the use of flexible working arrangements.
UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF is committed to promote the protection and safeguarding of all children.



UNICEF’s active commitment towards diversity and inclusion is critical to deliver the best results for children.

Mobility is a condition of international professional employment with UNICEF and an underlying premise of the international civil service.

UNICEF appointments are subject to medical clearance. Issuance of a visa by the host country of the duty station, which will be facilitated by UNICEF, is required for IP positions. Appointments are also subject to inoculation (vaccination) requirements, including against SARS-CoV-2 (Covid). Should you be selected for a position with UNICEF, you either must be inoculated as required or receive a medical exemption from the relevant department of the UN. Otherwise, the selection will be cancelled.

All selected candidates will undergo rigorous reference and background checks and will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.

Government employees that are considered for employment with UNICEF are normally required to resign from their government before taking up an assignment with UNICEF. UNICEF reserves the right to withdraw an offer of appointment, without compensation, if a visa or medical clearance is not obtained, or necessary inoculation requirements are not met, within a reasonable period for any reason.

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.

This job has expired.