Legal Officer, Open Society Justice Initiative

Open Society Foundations
  • Location
    London, United Kingdom
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Early Career / Mid Career
  • Posted
    Jan 31

Position description

Legal Officer, Open Society Justice Initiative. London. Posting Date: 01/30/2020. Deadline: 02/29/2020

Do you want to help make the world a better place with your practical litigation experience in human rights or public interest cases? We are seeking a Legal Officer based in London or New York, with strong research and drafting skills who can develop and execute strategies of complex litigation.

The Open Society Foundations work to build vibrant and inclusive democracies whose governments are accountable and open to the participation of all people. We are active in more than 120 countries, making us the world's largest private funder of independent groups working for justice, democratic governance, and human rights.

The Open Society Justice Initiative (JI) uses strategic litigation and other kinds of legal advocacy to defend and promote the rule of law and to advance human rights. We employ litigation, advocacy, research, and technical assistance across a range of issues.

As a Legal Officer at Open Society, you will:

  • Conceptualize strategic human rights litigation on areas of JI's priorities, especially those relating to criminal and regulatory law; develop and execute strategy on assigned cases.
  • Manage litigation strategy for complex human rights cases, including leading/overseeing specific-case litigation teams of lawyers and experts.
  • Undertake legal and factual research into complex issues of human rights law and procedure.
  • Draft legal applications, briefs, pleadings and other documents for submission to domestic and international administrative forums, tribunals and courts, and support other Justice Initiative lawyers in the same activities.
  • Provide technical assistance and strategic advice to professional clients, project partners, and external organizations (NGOs) involved in strategic litigation by providing advice on substantive legal questions, procedure before human rights courts and tribunals and analysis of individual cases.
  • Ensure appropriate professional standards and client care protocols in all Justice Initiative litigation.


What we are looking for:

  • Degree in Law with substantial post-qualification experience and solid background in litigation.
  • Demonstrated experience in conceptualizing, managing complex human rights litigation and litigation teams, ability to conduct research, write and edit a range of different materials including reports, legal documents, blogs and submissions for different audiences.
  • Experience with human rights law and/or international law, litigation in a civil law jurisdiction
  • Practical experience with case and document management in a busy law practice or with an organization involved in litigation.
  • Experience in providing litigation support throughout the different stages including research, intake interviews with clients, preparation of legal filings (including fact checking and cite checking), organizing evidence, collating authorities in support of litigation, preparing case summaries, and managing litigation teams.
  • Familiarity and proven record of conducting all-source research via websites, Lexis/Nexis, WestLaw, foreign source materials, academic studies.
  • Proficiency in French and English, with strong written and oral communication skills in both languages.


Desirable (but not required):

  • Practical experience of working with non-governmental organizations highly desirable.
  • Familiarity with prosecution or defense of complex criminal cases is an added advantage.
  • Project management skills, including the ability to overview case management processes, systems, and workflows record keeping, budgeting management and finance administration highly desirable.


What we offer:

London

  • Ample opportunities to learn and grow, from annual professional development allowances to onsite trainings and brown bag lunches with visiting experts.
  • 25 paid holiday, flexible work arrangements, private medical coverage, a generous retirement savings plan, up to one year of paid parental leave, reproductive and family planning support, sabbatical opportunities, and much more .
  • A commitment to creating a diverse and inclusive workplace that enables everyone to bring their full self to work and make a positive impact on the world.


New York

  • Ample opportunities to learn and grow, from annual professional development allowances to onsite trainings and brown bag lunches with visiting experts.
  • Top-notch benefits and perksdesigned for your well-being and a healthy work-life balance (20 vacation days, flexible work arrangements, 100 percent employer-paid health insurance, a generous retirement savings plan, six months paid parental leave, reproductive and family planning support, sabbatical opportunities, and much more .
  • A commitment to creating a diverse and inclusive workplace that enables everyone to bring their full self to work and make a positive impact on the world.


If this sounds like the position you have been looking for, please submit your cover letter and CV; we look forward to learning more about you.

Competitive rates of pay apply.

We aim to build an inclusive workforce that is reflective of the populations we support, and actively seek applications from those who are marginalized and underrepresented. We are committed to providing reasonable accommodations to applicants and colleagues with disabilities.
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