CfA 21-06/21 - LEGAL EXPERT



REF NO. CfA 21-06/21





As of 2018, a growing number of migrants mainly from the Middle East, Asia and Northern Africa started transiting through Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), mostly directed towards western and northern Europe. Some are looking for asylum and safety from conflict or persecution, others for education or employment opportunities -some pushed by abject poverty - and some a mix of all these. While the majority express an intention to seek asylum, only some meet the requirements for international protection and very few pursue this avenue in BiH. Few hundreds, not being eligible for international protection or not being able to continue the journey decide to return, applying for the assisted voluntary return and reintegration (AVRR) programme led by the International Organization for Migration (IOM). Finally, some are returned to neighbouring countries, in appliance of inter-governmental agreements on readmission. Readmission agreements with countries of origin are almost non-existent or not implemented. Apart from international protection and return, other regularization avenues such as the temporary residency permit based on humanitarian grounds, medical reasons and family reunification are rarely if ever used.

Against this background, IOM seeks to identify a national consultant to conduct a legal review of BiH legislation to outline the different options available to foreigners/migrants in BiH to regularize their stay and engage in education, volunteering, work or other activities.  Upon satisfactory delivery of this first task, the incumbent may also be considered for more regular consulting services on migration law with IOM BiH.




IOM seeks a national legal expert to conduct a review of BiH primary and secondary legislation on migration, asylum, admission, stay, residency, family reunification, education and working permits for foreigners/migrants and related laws, for example related to access to services such as shelter and housing, medical care, justice and legal assistance, special protection for children, women, persons with disabilities, victims of trafficking and smuggled migrants and related referral pathways (if any), social security and taxation, and provide an analysis and legal advice to IOM as per need and as detailed below. 




The objective of the consultancy is to produce a report outlining and analysing the different options in the current domestic legislation and/or according to regional migration law available to foreigners/migrants to regularize their stay and engage in education (including vocational training), volunteering, work or other activities in BiH.

The report should describe a) the different regularization options and related applicable domestic legal framework, b) eligibility criteria, c) the procedures to be followed in each case, d) rights/ entitlements and obligations/duties, and e) the competent authorities.

Furthermore, the report should highlight any shortcomings and gaps in the domestic legislation (especially secondary legislation) that may hamper the possibilities and completion of regularization procedures. If and when necessary, the report should underscore where legislation is not yet fully aligned with the EU Acquis and applicable international law and standards and recommend the necessary changes or good practices that could inform reforms.

Last, the report should highlight if existing legislation and regularization avenues are not effectively applied and what are the main reasons.

The report will be used to provide advice to BiH authorities on potential legislative and policy reforms. The report will also be used as basis for information and awareness raising activities targeting migrants present in BiH about their rights and the different options available to them. Finally, it will serve to inform more tailored case management and referral of migrants to competent authorities.




Under the direct management of the Programme Coordinator and overall oversight of the Chief of Mission, the incumbent will be responsible for the following tasks:

  • Define, in coordination with IOM BiH, the scope of the legal review.
  • Draft an inception report delineating at minimum a) the scope, methodology, roadmap and timeline of the review, b) a proposed list of legislation and documents to be included in the desk research, c) a list of key actors to be interviewed, and d) the proposed structure of the report.
  • Closely coordinate with IOM BiH any contact with local authorities to acquire legislation not available online.
  • Conduct Key Informant Interviews (KII) and consultations of relevant authorities and civil society actors.
  • Draft the Legal Review of BiH Migration Law report. The report shall be in English language. The incumbent shall be responsible for ensuring the high quality of the report, both in terms of content and form. IOM should not be required to do major editing.
  • In coordination with IOM, prepare flowcharts or other visual elements to facilitate comprehension of the different existing regularization paths.
  • Address any feedback provided by IOM on the report and prepare a final version.
  • Ensure proper formatting of the document.
  • Once the report is finalized, conduct a presentation of the report for IOM management and any other stakeholders invited by IOM. The presentation may take place face to face or online, depending on COVID-19 epidemiological situation and if it will allow events in presence.
  • Provide legal advice to IOM on potential areas of policy work regarding regularization paths, as required.





The implementation of the tasks set will lead to the following deliverables:

  • Inception report.
  • Records and / or transcripts of interviews / correspondence (e.g., email exchanges with consulted authorities and relevant stakeholders)
  • Legal review report.
  • Presentation of the report.


Realistic delivery dates and details as to how the work must be delivered

The assignment will last 30 working days within a period of four months. The consultancy is home based, with one presentation to be held in Sarajevo, BiH, or online, as determined in coordination with IOM. The indicative timeframe for the deliverables is the following:



Indicative terms of payment

Inception report

5 working days


Research and Drafting of report

18 working days

Final report

5 working days



2 working days


Performance indicators for evaluation of results (value of services rendered in relation to their cost)

  • Quality and timely delivery of services
  • Professional communication with IOM and other stakeholders
  • IOM’s positive feedback on the report and presentation based on clarity, comprehensiveness and on IOM’s ability use the report





  • Master’s degree or equivalent in Law by a recognised university.
  • Bar exam is an asset.
  • At least 5 years of relevant professional experience.
  • Demonstrated previous experience in conducting similar tasks.
  • Track record of publications, research works or academic/specialized articles in the field of international humanitarian law, migration and asylum law, labour law or related.
  • Good knowledge of BiH context and institutional structure.
  • Good analytical skills and ability to provide legal advice and make recommendations.
  • Excellent writing skills.
  • Ability to effectively present and communicate information, both verbal and written.
  • Advanced written and spoken local language and English is required.
  • Computer literate.


Desirable competencies for all applicants:

  • Demonstrated knowledge of national and regional migration law and policies.
  • Good knowledge of international law relevant to migration, including human rights instruments and standards.
  • Ability to work independently and good coordination skills.
  • Flexibility and ability to work in a culturally diverse environment.




The assignment will last 30 working days within a period of four months (indicatively 1 July – 30 October 2021).


  1. LOCATION:  


The consultancy is home based, with one presentation to be held in Sarajevo, BiH, or online, as determined in coordination with IOM.




Interested candidates are kindly requested to submit:

  1. Curriculum Vitae
  2. Financial offer indicating the requested daily fee (including travel and other expenses necessary to complete the task)
  3. Motivation letter in English
  4. Two references with contact details
  5. At least one writing sample (for example, academic articles, reports, or similar) v


Applications should be sent via email to: with the email subject “Legal Expert”. The application should be submitted before 24 June 2021.  

Please note that this is a national position.

POSTING PERIOD: 10 June 2021 – 24 June 2021

Closing Date: 
Thursday, June 24, 2021