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Senior Legal Associate (PN10022664) Ankara

Ankara (Turkey)

  • Organization: UNHCR - United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
  • Location: Ankara (Turkey)
  • Grade: GS-7, General Service - No need for Higher Education - Locally recruited position - Administrative support
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Legal - Broad
  • Closing Date: 2020-02-26

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Internal candidates

General Service Staff members currently serving at the duty station where the vacancy exists, who have been appointed through the AC process and have indefinite or Fixed Term appointment.  Interested staff members should consult the Policy and Procedures on Assignments of Locally recruited Staff (PPAL).

External candidates

External candidates must be legally present in Turkey at the time of application, recruitment and hire. Non-Turkish citizens are required to submit a valid Turkish residence permit to be considered. Organizational Setting and Work Relationships

The Senior Legal Associate is a member of the protection /legal team and normally reports to a higher grade professional staff.

The Senior Legal Associate assists an office in providing quality, timely and effective protection responses to the needs of populations of concern. He is also required to assist an office in ensuring that persons of concern are involved with the office in making decisions that affect them, whether in accessing their rights or in identifying appropriate solutions to their problems. To achieve this, the incumbent will need to build and maintain effective interfaces with communities of concern and authorities as well as protection and assistance partners.

The incumbent may supervise interns, volunteers and interpreters, and may also supervise some support staff.  S/he assists the protection team, in making sure that protection standards, operational procedures and practices in protection delivery are in line with the international standards, and provides functional protection support and advice to other protection colleagues and other units.

S/he contributes to implementing, and adjusting when necessary, the office¿s comprehensive protection strategy including the role of UNHCR in the context of further strengthening the national capacity of relevant actors, both governmental e.g. Ministry of Justice, and non-governmental, e.g. NGOs and lawyers.  In this regard, s/he represents the office externally on protection doctrine and policy as needed and under the guidance by the supervisor.  

S/he also works independently in constantly monitoring relevant legal and political developments, in both asylum and statelessness issues, and provides recommendations to the protection team on appropriate advocacy and interventions for the office to make.

The incumbent will be conducting researches and following the judicial developments at the national and regional level. S/he will be supporting the preparation of legal materials that are shared with the national counterparts as recommendations. S/he will be engaged in preparing compilation of good practices and comparative charts on a broad spectrum of topics and reporting of the developments. The incumbent will also support organizing capacity-building activities through preparation of materials and presenting the topics.

All UNHCR staff members are accountable to perform their duties as reflected in their job description. They do so within their delegated authorities, in line with the regulatory framework of UNHCR which includes the UN Charter, UN Staff Regulations and Rules, UNHCR Policies and Administrative Instructions as well as relevant accountability frameworks. In addition, staff members are required to discharge their responsibilities in a manner consistent with the core, functional, cross-functional and managerial competencies and UNHCR's core values of professionalism, integrity and respect for diversity.


- Assist in the preparation of legal advice and drafting of position papers and guidelines on pertinent legal and operational issues.
- Stay abreast of the domestic legal issues and pertinent laws regarding persons of concern and advise the office accordingly.
- Contribute to advocacy towards proper interpretation of law and doctrine as well as in the development of standards of protection.
- Liaise with the Legal Affairs Service on issues related to immunities of UNHCR personnel and provide corresponding guidance and support locally to concerned staff.
- Liaise and intervene with national, regional or local authorities in relation to the above areas of responsibility, as required.
- Assist in the organization of training sessions for legal professionals and asylum case workers and judges in the field of asylum.
- Consistently apply international and national law and UNHCR policies and standards.
- Assist the office in providing legal counselling to persons of concern.
- Assist in the collection and analysis of relevant legal and protection information.
- Provide assistance in UNHCR's legal publications, in dissemination of legal information on refugee law, in UNHCR's legal website and other legal advice as needed.
- Support translation of legal and policy documents and act as interpreter at high level meetings with the authorities when needed.
- Provide advice and support the office reviewing their contracts.
- Provide support on a wide range of corporate and institutional issues, including on the interpretation and application of UNHCR regulations, rules, policies and procedures within the local legislation context.
- Assist the office in providing legal counselling to personnel on various types of contractual arrangements.
- In close cooperation with the Protection team, assist UNHCR's drafting of law commentaries to draft national legislation related to refugee law, in compliance with UNHCR's positions and Guidelines.
- Support the Protection team in maintaining and strengthening relations with governmental, as well as non-governmental, actors in order to strengthen a network for assisting refugees and asylum seekers and also in strategically approach both national and local political figures.
- Prepare drafts for office correspondence concerning protection issues.
- Monitor/make briefing on legislative/judicial developments for the purpose of preparing office responses and/or to feed into briefing kits for external visitors.
- Support the implementation of activities with various institutions and civil society partners.
- Perform other related duties as required.

Minimum Qualifications

Education & Professional Work Experience

Years of Experience / Degree Level
7 years relevant experience with High school diploma

Relevant Job Experience


Minimum 7 years of previous relevant job experience.
Experience in dealing with authorities as well as within a multicultural environment.


Good knowledge of UNHCR's protection mandate.
Work experience in human rights issues and/or refugee law is an asset.

Language Requirements

Knowledge of English and/or UN working language of the duty station if not English.

This is a Standard Job Description for all UNHCR jobs with this job title and grade level. The Operational Context may contain additional essential and/or desirable qualifications relating to the specific operation and/or position. Any such requirements are incorporated by reference in this Job Description and will be considered for the screening, shortlisting and selection of candidates. Shortlisted candidates may be required to sit for a test. Only shortlisted candidates will be notified. No late applications will be accepted.

UNHCR is committed to diversity and welcomes applications from qualified candidates regardless of disability, gender identity, marital or civil partnership status, race, color or ethnic and national origins, religion or belief, or sexual orientation.
Female candidates are encouraged to apply.

UNHCR does not charge a fee at any stage of the recruitment process (application, interview meeting, processing, training or any other fees).


A competitive compensation and benefits package is offered. The monthly net salary is between TRY 9,792.94 and TRY 12,291.41 depending on relevant experience, dependency status and language proficiency. For more information on UN salaries, allowances and benefits, please visit the portal of the Office of HR Management of United Nations. The closing date of the Job opening is 26 February 2020.
We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.

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