European Patent Office

Legal internship at the EPO in Munich (Rechtsreferendariat) (9141)


Location: Munich 

Duration: max 4 months

Application deadline: No application deadline, applications can be filed any time



The EPO offers legal internships as part of your Rechtsreferendarzeit (period of practical training between first and second state examination for law students in Germany).

The legal internship takes place at the EPO in Munich.



You must

  • be a national of one of the EPO member states;
  • have successfully completed the first state examination in law (erstes Staatsexamen)
  • have a very good knowledge of one of the EPO's official languages (English, French and German) and a good knowledge of one of the others
  • be in possession of a valid passport or national identity card and produce a certificate of good conduct
  • have customer service, organisational and prioritisation skills, very good communication skills, capacity to analyse problems and find appropriate solutions, ability to work independently as well as within a team, responsibility, professionalism, flexibility and self-initiative, personal integrity, discretion and respect for confidentiality



Selection procedure

Preselected candidates will be invited to a telephone or Skype interview.



Please apply by completing the online application form, making sure to include the documents indicated below:

  • CV (specifying your language levels according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages)
  • Degree obtained on completion of the first state examination in law (erstes Staatsexamen)
  • Motivation letter

In your motivation letter, please indicate your first and second choice of EPO legal department where you would like to work

- Patent Law

- European and International Legal Affairs, PCT

- Legal and Unitary Patent Division

- Institutional and general legal matters


Please note that applications are accepted all year round for this rolling vacancy. Candidates will be contacted as soon as need arises in the relevant department.

To foster gender diversity, EPO encourages applications from women. 

The EPO is an equal opportunities employer and supports workforce diversity as a signatory to the Diversity Charter (Charta der Vielfalt) since 2010.
All applications for vacant positions will be welcomed and considered on the professional merits of the applicant against the role profile for the position regardless of nationality, ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, parental responsibilities, age, religion or belief.

About the EPO

The European Patent Office

With almost 7 000 employees, the European Patent Office (EPO) is one of the largest public service institutions in Europe. Its headquarters are in Munich and it also has offices in Berlin, Brussels, The Hague and Vienna. The EPO was founded with the aim of strengthening co-operation on patents in Europe. Through the EPO's centralised patent granting procedure, inventors are able to obtain high-quality patent protection in up to 44 countries, covering a market of some 700 million people. The EPO is also the world's leading authority in patent information and patent searching.

The EPO received over 181 000 patent applications and granted over 137 000 patents, in 2019. Its free online patent database, Espacenet, contains more than 100 million technical documents from 100 countries, and its free neural machine translation service, Patent Translate, provides instant, high-quality translation in 32 languages, including Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Russian.