NATO - North Atlantic Treaty Organization

NATO Internship Programme

NATO International Military Staff

Office of the Legal Advisor, IMS

Within the International Military Staff (IMS) structure, the Office of the Legal Advisor (OLA) is responsible for providing professional and independent legal advice to the Chairman and Deputy Chairman of the Military Committee (MC), the Director General International Military Staff (DGIMS) and the IMS Division Directors and their Staff on legal issues related to NATO activities, procedures, operations, rules and provisions.

This includes advice on the international and national legal implications of all aspects of the NATO mission and the military advice provided to the North Atlantic Council (NAC) by the MC.  Furthermore, the OLA provides legal advice on the legal aspects of military operations, as well as the support to those operations produced by divisions of the IMS and the NATO Standardization Office. 

Additionally the OLA provides advice on the legal aspects of matters peculiar to the IMS and its presence in Belgium; staff generated questions, studies and proposals, the actions of boards and committees and contracts (with particular emphasis on contracts for goods and services or civilian personnel where commitments are to be made overseas). 

Finally, the OLA advises on all legal aspects of personnel disciplinary issues by assisting in resolution of all legal issues, including resolving civilian personnel complaints at various levels of appeal, including representing the IMS before the NATO Administrative Tribunal.

The office consists of two military legal advisors of different nationalities and as an Intern, you will become part of the team, working closely with the legal advisors and learning from their expertise and gathering experience in and outside the organization.

You will be assigned to different projects and be asked to do relevant research on the past, but also provide legal input on current and upcoming issues facing the Military Committee. This might include providing (ad hoc) legal input on draft agreements and current (news) issues, write memos and background papers, attending meetings (with occasional minute taking) and sporadically attending a seminar, mainly related to the general or specific needs of the office at that time.

In addition to collaborating with the other members of the division within the IMS, you will also work closely with the legal advisors from the International Staff, SHAPE, ACT, Joint Forces Command Brunssum and Joint Forces Command Naples, to name a few.

They say, life is what you make it. If you show a positive and proactive attitude, you will be able to participate in the Team and work on interesting projects. You will have the unique opportunity to experience and contribute to the work of the Alliance.