European Patent Office

 Talent Pool for Lawyers (Employment Law) (10259)


Job group: 4

Grade: G7 to G10 (net (basic) monthly salary* for this vacancy: EUR 5 685.84 to 8 052.18)

Career path: Technical

Location: Munich

Application deadline: Ongoing



The European Patent Office in Munich is developing its talent pool in anticipation of future openings for lawyers in its Employment Law Directorate.

The Employment Law Directorate is part of the Principal Directorate Human Resources which, with a staff of around 200, aims to provide staff and management with prompt, personal and professional support. The role of the Employment Law Directorate (composed of some 20 staff) is to give advice on employment law to Office management and HR directorates and to represent the EPO in internal appeals before the Appeals Committee and in complaints before the Administrative Tribunal of the International Labour Organization. 


Your main responsibilities as a lawyer in the Employment Law Directorate

  • Advising EPO top management and core business stakeholders on a range of strategic and operational questions whilst ensuring alignment with EPO rules and business objectives
  • Providing legal advice on new policies, reforms and reform projects on individual and collective employment law matters
  • Providing daily legal support and expertise to various HR directorates on:

°  HR operations and allowances

°  HR services to management and business areas

°  case management

  • Helping to prevent and settle internal and external disputes initiated by serving or former EPO staff
  • Participating in discussions and negotiations aimed at reaching amicable settlements
  • Conducting proceedings under EPO employment‑law rules before the Appeals Committee as well as before the ILO Administrative Tribunal, drafting legal submissions, making oral pleadings and preparing decisions
  • Any other tasks and duties upon request, depending on business needs 


What we expect from you

  • Versatile profile with openness to a diverse range of responsibilities and the ability to multitask
  • A fully completed university degree in law
  • Knowledge of labour law, plus ideally knowledge of the fundamentals of public international law, the law of international organisations as well as international civil service law
  • Ideally knowledge and experience in social dialogue and collective employment law matters
  • Understanding of political and legislative processes
  • Experience in drafting legal opinions and legislation adopted by the executive head or the governing body of an international organisation
  • Advanced legal research, analytical and drafting skills tailored to the audience
  • Ability to work effectively under pressure and to strict deadlines
  • Ability to present clear, concise and persuasive arguments
  • A well-organised, systematic and results-oriented approach
  • Excellent command of English and a good working knowledge of French and German 


Your qualifications

  • Diploma of completed university studies at master's level or – in exceptional cases – equivalent professional experience
  • Excellent knowledge of one official language and ability to understand the other two
  • Citizenship of one of the member states of the European Patent Organisation


Time frame and procedure

If you think you might be interested in working for us in future, please fill out our application form so that we can consider your profile. We will contact you with more information about our organisation and will let you know when we publish a new vacancy in case you would like us to put your application forward for it.



* after deduction of EPO internal tax and before deduction of staff contributions to the social-security and pension schemes. The salary level depends on experience.

To foster gender diversity, EPO encourages applications from female candidates. 
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.

In 2018, the EPO received over 174 000 patent applications and granted over 127 000 patents. 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.

What we offer

  • intellectual challenges and empowerment through professional development
  • the chance to work with inspiring people from various different cultures
  • an excellent social package
  • contributory medical-insurance and pension schemes
  • relocation benefits and various allowances (e.g. household, dependants', childcare, education, expatriation, installation and rent allowance), depending on their personal circumstances

> Application procedure

> Recruitment process