United Nations Office of Administration of Justice (OAJ)



  • Organization TypeService Providers
  • Founded2009
The Office of Administration of Justice is an independent office responsible for the overall coordination of the formal system of administration of justice, and for contributing to its functioning in a fair, transparent and efficient manner. The Office of Administration of Justice provides substantive, technical and administrative support to the judges of the UN Dispute Tribunal and UN Appeals Tribunal through the registries, as well as to the Office of Staff Legal Assistance. The Tribunals have professional independent judges adjudicating cases. The Office of Staff Legal Assistance has professional lawyers who provide independent legal assistance to staff members, in accordance with standards established for legal practitioners. With its headquarters in New York, the Office of Administration of Justice also has a presence — through the UNDT registries and the branch offices of the Office of Staff Legal Assistance — in Geneva, Nairobi, Addis Ababa, and Beirut. In 2007, the General Assembly decided to introduce a new system for handling internal disputes and disciplinary matters in the United Nations. This came as a result of extensive discussions on the issue of administration of justice, and a keen recognition by both management and staff that the existing system no longer met the needs of the Organization. The General Assembly acted on a proposal made by the Secretary-General. This proposal was based on the recommendations of an external panel of experts, the "Panel on the Redesign of the UN system of administration of justice", and on consultations with staff through the Staff-Management Coordination Committee. The goal was to have a system that was independent, professionalized, expedient, transparent and decentralized, with a stronger emphasis on resolving disputes through informal means, before resorting to formal litigation. The new system of administration of justice became operational on 1 July 2009. Legal ASSISTANCE A staff member may seek advice from the Office of Staff Legal Assistance at any stage of a dispute, or even in anticipation of a dispute. Dispute TRIBUNAL If a matter cannot be resolved informally, a staff member can file an application contesting an administrative decision to the UN Dispute Tribunal. Appeals TRIBUNAL Decisions by the Dispute Tribunal may be appealed, either by staff or the Administration, to the UN Appeals Tribunal. The Tribunal can also hear cases filed by other entities subject to a special agreement with the Secretary-General of the United Nations.

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