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Legal Officer P3, Rome, Italy


  • Organization: WFP - World Food Programme
  • Location: Rome
  • Grade: P-3, International Professional - Internationally recruited position
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Legal - Broad
  • Closing Date: 2022-10-01


WFP celebrates and embraces diversity. It is committed to the principle of equal employment opportunity for all its employees and encourages qualified candidates to apply irrespective of race, colour, national origin, ethnic or social background, genetic information, gender, gender identity and/or expression, sexual orientation, religion or belief, HIV status or disability.


Are you an experienced Legal professional interested in further developing your professional experience while contributing to ending global hunger? Are you passionate about helping those in need? Would you like to join a global organization investing in its people?
If so, an exciting & fulfilling career awaits you! Join our diverse and passionate team that works on varied and international projects directly contributing to saving & changing millions of lives around the globe.




Applications must be submitted by Friday, September 30, 2022 (10:59 PM CET)



The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), a highly prestigious, reputable & world’s largest humanitarian organization, operating in more than 120 countries and territories, bringing life-saving assistance in emergencies, building pathways to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change and supporting sustainable and resilient livelihoods for a world with zero hunger.


At WFP, people are at the heart of everything we do and the vision of the future WFP workforce is one of diverse, committed, skilled, and high performing teams, selected on merit, operating in a healthy and inclusive work environment, living WFP's values (Integrity, Collaboration, Commitment, Humanity, and Inclusion) and working with partners to save and change the lives of those WFP serves.  


To learn more about WFP, visit our website: UN World Food Programme (WFP) and follow us on social media to keep up with our latest news: YouTubeLinkedInInstagramFacebookTwitter.




  • WFP is a 2020 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate 
  • WFP offers a highly inclusive, diverse, and multicultural working environment 
  • WFP invests in the personal & professional development of its employees through a range of training, accreditation, coaching, mentorship, and other programs as well as through internal mobility opportunities 
  • A career path in WFP provides an exciting opportunity to work across the various country, regional and global offices around the world, and with passionate colleagues who work tirelessly to ensure that effective humanitarian assistance reaches millions of people across the globe
  • We offer an attractive compensation package (please refer to the Terms and Conditions section)




The Legal Office (LEG) is responsible for providing support to WFP and its organizational units in order to ensure that the implementation of WFP’s activities is in compliance with the relevant legal framework and that any legal risks that arise are considered and managed.


LEG is seeking to fill a number of Legal Officer positions at the P3 level. The advertised positions are located in our Contractual and Constitutional Law Branch (LEGC) and our Administration and Employment Law Branch (LEGA), based at our Headquarters in Rome, Italy.


Depending on the position, one of these branches will be your base branch for this post. The legal office is in the process of developing a pooled service arrangement for posts at this level aimed at promoting inter-branch engagement and expanding staff knowledge and skills. This includes an opportunity to undertake 50% of your work from other branches.




As the advertised positions are located in LEGA and LEGC branches, experience in any of the following areas will be considered an asset:


LEGA provides legal services on all aspects of the employment relationship between WFP and its personnel. It is responsible for:


  1. providing legal support and advice on the development, interpretation, and application of WFP’s employment framework;
  2. providing legal support and advice on appropriate contractual modalities and conditions of service for deployment of personnel and technical expertise from private and public sectors:
  3. advising on matters concerning conduct and discipline including at the investigation and disciplinary stages;
  4. handling contentious matters arising in connection with WFP’s various contracts of employment, including the negotiation and settlement of claims, and the representation of WFP in legal actions brought before adjudicatory or other bodies;
  5. advising on the privileges and immunities of WFP personnel.


LEGC is responsible for:


  • advising on governance matters pertaining to the interpretation and application of the constitutional texts of WFP, including the General Regulations, General Rules, Financial Regulations and Rules of Procedure of the Executive Board of WFP, delegations of authority and other norms issued thereunder, and the decisions of the Executive Board; 
  • negotiating, and advising on, Basic Agreements and other agreements concerning the status of WFP in the countries in which it has operations;
  • advising on the privileges and immunities of WFP, where appropriate in coordination with the UN Office of Legal Affairs and the Legal Office of FAO; 
  • advising on all other matters of public international law, including but not limited to international humanitarian law, international human rights law, the law of treaties, and other fields as appropriate; 
  • advising and providing legal support on matters involving public and private sector (including private corporations and foundations) fundraising, partnership, and communication; 
  • advising and providing legal support on matters involving collaboration and partnerships with governments, UN system agencies, other intergovernmental organizations, and nongovernmental organizations; 
  • advising on matters involving legal aspects of data protection, information technology, and intellectual property, including but not limited to use of WFP’s names and emblems by third parties; 
  • providing legal support to cash-based transaction programmes including in connection with contracts with financial service providers and merchants; 
  • providing legal support with legal aspects of treasury and other finance operations; 
  • providing support to innovation initiatives, such as introduction of new tools to provide food assistance to beneficiaries and fundraising; and 
  • representing WFP in dispute resolution proceedings involving matters that fall under LEGC’s competence. 


KEY ACCOUNTABILITIES (not all-inclusive)


Under the general supervision of a more senior Legal Officer, the P3 Legal Officer will be responsible for the following duties and may supervise others carrying out these duties:


General duties:


  • Undertake extensive legal research and analysis, handle a wide range of complex multi-disciplinary legal matters of a substantive and procedural nature including interpretation and application of applicable legal instruments to facilitate the provision of quality and timely legal services;
  • Review and draft a variety of legal documents, including agreements, memoranda of understanding, and contracts, to identify relevant legal issues and risks and to ensure compliance with the applicable legal framework and jurisprudence;
  • Prepare legal advice on the interpretation and application of WFP’s Regulations, Rules, Policies, and Procedures as well as applicable conventions, resolutions, and agreements;
  • Prepare legal opinions, reports, memoranda, and other correspondence;
  • Provide advice to country offices, HQ units on a wide variety of issues;
  • Contribute to the preparation of agreements and contracts including participation in negotiation and settlement of claims and disputes to meet unique client needs;
  • Identify potential liabilities, particularly vis-à-vis other parties, and assist in the management of risks in WFP’s activities to contribute to well-informed decisions;
  • Prepare and assess briefs of evidence to contribute to legal analysis and solutions;
  • Participate in servicing internal and external committees, task forces, expert working groups, and other bodies with legal advice and preparation/review of legal documents to contribute to the formulation of WFP’s position;
  • Conduct/engage in dispute resolution, including liaising with external counsel or representing in administrative or tribunal proceedings and arbitration where appropriate;
  • Contribute to building productive partnerships within the legal team and with other Legal Offices across the UN system;
  • Contribute to the determination of strategy and approach to legal matters;
  • Develop new legal modalities within the framework of WFP’s normative guidelines. If selected for the LEGC branch, the incumbent will participate, in a multi-disciplinary context, in the development of cash-based solutions and expanding component of WFP’s food-assistance response;
  • Provide legal support to various standing boards, committees, working groups, and task forces and represent the organization at meetings, conferences, and other events;
  • Take responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives in all areas of work, to ensure equal participation of women and men;
  • Facilitate legal training sessions for other Units and Divisions.
  • Perform other related duties as required by the Legal Office.






  • Advanced University degree in Law, or First University degree in Law with additional relevant experience and training.
  • Must be qualified to practice or admitted to practice law by a recognized national or state bar or law society, or have equivalent professional legal practice experience.




  • At least 5 years (of which 3 years is in an international context) of relevant progressively responsible experience in at least one of the areas of expertise covered by the LEG branches.
  • Knowledge of international public law is desirable.
  • Experience in financial transactions, public and/or private international law will be considered an asset.
  • Experience in litigation will be considered an asset.




  • Fluency (level C) in the English language.
  • Intermediate knowledge (level B) of a second official UN language: Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian, Spanish, and/or Portuguese (A WFP’s working language).





You have:


  • Knowledge of and ability to apply legal principles, concepts, procedures and terminology for review, examination and processing of a range of legal documents;
  • Clear and concise thinking and drafting with attention to detail;
  • Strong negotiation skills and problem-solving approach;
  • Independent decision-making skill;
  • Business acumen and ability to think strategically;
  • High standards of ethics and values;
  • General knowledge of UN system policies, rules, regulations and procedures;
  • A track record of delivering, both orally and in writing sound legal analysis based on detailed legal research and proper conceptualization of legal issues;
  • Aptitude to develop a persuasive argumentation and legal strategy;
  • Ability to prepare timely documents in a clear, concise and logical manner;
  • Commitment to work harmoniously within a team and with people of different national and cultural backgrounds;
  • Willingness to act as a mentor or point of reference to junior colleagues;
  • Strong multi-tasking and time-management skills;
  • Proven communication, teamwork and interpersonal skills;
  • Adaptability and ability to work autonomously, with minimal guidance and supervision;
  • Ability to work with tact and a high degree of discretion and confidentiality; 




These are the common standards of behaviour that guide HOW we work together to accomplish our mission.


Leads by Example with Integrity Drives Results and Delivers on Commitments Fosters Inclusive and Collaborative Teamwork Applies Strategic Thinking Builds and Maintains Sustainable Partnerships

Lives the WFP values and shows humanity and integrity by role modelling care for others

Delivers on commitments and adapts readily to change

Is inclusive and collaborative, and contributes to a culture of learning and personal growth

Demonstrates commitment to gather perspectives, analyse options and risks, and propose new ways of doing things

Builds and nurtures  external partnerships and collaborates with partners to deliver common objectives


Different expectations of behaviour are defined depending on your grade and role/responsibilities within WFP.




  • This is an International Professional position (non-rotational) and is open to all nationalities.
  • Mobility is and continues to be a core contractual requirement in WFP. This position is however classified as "non-rotational" which means the incumbent shall not be subject to the regular reassignment process unless the position is reclassified as rotational. The selected candidate will be employed on a fixed-term contract with a probationary period of one year. This position is open to both internal and external candidates.
  • WFP offers an attractive compensation and benefits package in line with ICSC standards ( including basic salary, post adjustment, relocation entitlement, visa, travel and shipment allowances, 30 days’ annual leave, home leave, an education grant for dependent children, a pension plan, and medical insurance.
  • The selected candidate will be required to relocate to Rome, Italy to take up this assignment.





  • We strongly recommend that your profile is accurate, complete, and includes your employment records, academic qualifications, language skills and UN Grade (if applicable).
  • Once your profile is completed, please apply, and submit your application.
  • Please make sure you upload your professional CV in the English language
  • Kindly note the only documents you will need to submit at this time are your CV and Cover Letter
  • Additional documents such as passport, recommendation letters, academic certificates, etc. may potentially be requested at a future time
  • Please contact us at [email protected] in case you face any challenges with submitting your application
  • Only shortlisted candidates will be notified



All employment decisions are made on the basis of organizational needs, job requirements, merit, and individual qualifications. WFP is committed to providing an inclusive work environment free of sexual exploitation and abuse, all forms of discrimination, any kind of harassment, sexual harassment, and abuse of authority. Therefore, all selected candidates will undergo rigorous reference and background checks.


WFP has zero tolerance for discrimination and does not discriminate on the basis of HIV/AIDS status.

No appointment under any kind of contract will be offered to members of the UN Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ), International Civil Service Commission (ICSC), FAO Finance Committee, WFP External Auditor, WFP Audit Committee, Joint Inspection Unit (JIU) and other similar bodies within the United Nations system with oversight responsibilities over WFP, both during their service and within three years of ceasing that service.

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.