Alternative Careers for Lawyers

European Commission's Legal Service

The role of the Legal Service is a) to provide legal advice to the Commission and its services, and b) to represent the Commission in all court cases.

It's a department of the Commission and reports directly to its President. As they say: "The Legal Service is the in-house counsel to the Commission."

Advice can be on proposed legislation, decisions, and investigations into suspected breaches of EU laws.

European Commission lawyers represent the Commission before the Court of Justice of the European Communities, the EU's highest court, the Court of First Instance in Luxembourg, and at the World Trade Organisation.

The Legal Service has a staff of around 200 lawyers, organised very much like a law firm.

There is open competition from across Europe for jobs, with the majority of lawyers taken on at around the 2-3 years PQE level.

Reputedly there is a real sense in the job of joining a project in progress, in a big and important scheme that is building up across Europe.

Recruitment is done via the European Personnel Selection Office:

European Commission's Legal Service
c/o European Personnel Selection Office
Candidate contact service
Office C-80 00/40
B-1049 Brussels
Tel: +32 2 299 1111 (LS)