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Office of Staff Legal Assistance

Informal Resolution of Disputes

In resolution A/RES/63/253 PDF document, the General Assembly reaffirmed that the informal resolution of conflict is a crucial element of the system of administration of justice and emphasized that all possible use should be made of the informal system in order to avoid unnecessary litigation.

OSLA may determine, upon assessment of a case involving an appeal of an administrative decision, that an informal resolution of the matter should be explored through the Ombudsman or other appropriate channels, before OSLA will assist with formal processes within the internal system of administrative justice.

It is important to note the provision of staff rule 11.1(c) that the conduct of informal resolution by the Office of the Ombudsman, including mediation, may result in the waiver, tolling or extension of the deadlines applicable to management evaluation and to the filing of an application with the United Nations Dispute Tribunal. However, as this is not automatic, OSLA strongly suggests that staff members make submissions within relevant time limits unless they have been specifically informed in writing by the Tribunals, Ombudsperson or other authorizing entity that the time limit has been extended.