Internships at the HCCH Permanent Bureau
(Head Office, The Hague)

The application period is now open for three- to six-month legal internships at the Permanent Bureau in The Hague, for the period from January to June 2024. Applications will be accepted until Friday 6 October 2023, 18.00 hours (CEST).

(The application period for legal internships from July 2024 will open in due course.)

The Permanent Bureau in The Hague is seeking interns to work on the following Conventions and projects:

In the Family and Child Protection Law Division:

  • 1980 Child Abduction Convention & 1996 Child Protection Convention
  • 1993 Adoption Convention & Parentage / Surrogacy Project
  • 2000 Protection of Adults Convention
  • 2007 Child Support Convention and Maintenance Obligations Protocol 

In the Transnational Litigation and Legal Cooperation Division

  • 1961 Apostille Convention (including e-APP)
  • 1965 Service Convention, 1970 Evidence Convention & 1980 Access to Justice Convention
  • 2005 Choice of Court Convention
  • 2019 Judgments Convention
  • Jurisdiction Project 

In the Commercial, Digital and Financial Law Division:

  • Central Bank Digital Currencies Project; Digital Assets and Tokens Joint Project
  • Digital Economy and Fintech, including Distributed Ledger Technology
  • 1985 Trusts Convention
  • 2006 Securities Convention
  • 2015 Choice of Law Principles

Application Requirements
Prospective applicants should complete an online application form and submit the following supporting documentation: 

  1. a letter of motivation (one page maximum, in English)
  2. curriculum vitae (CV)
  3. a transcript of academic records or statement of academic results
  4. an academic writing sample (an excerpt of any of your essays or papers in either English or French)
  5. at least one letter of recommendation

Please note, all documents should be submitted in PDF format and named in the following way:
[FAMILY NAME] [First Name] [Document Number] – [Document Name]
SMITH John 1 – Letter of Motivation
SMITH John 2 – CV

Complete applications should be submitted via the online application form available at the following link: no later than Friday 6 October 2023,18.00 hours (CEST). Incomplete applications and applications submitted after the deadline will not be considered.

Candidates are expected to be contacted by e-mail regarding the outcome of their application by the end of November 2023. Shortlisted candidates will be invited to participate in a video interview to assess their qualifications and motivations.

Important Information about the Internship

The Permanent Bureau of the HCCH seeks legal interns to assist HCCH staff members in the discharge of their duties and in their day-to-day work. It is also an opportunity for students who, in the context of their degree studies or their doctoral research, wish to gain practical educational work experience, to deepen their knowledge of private international law, and to understand how the HCCH functions.

Duration of Internships
The duration of an HCCH internship is generally three to six months. Please note that only applications for full-time internships (five days per week) will be considered.

Eligibility criteria
The HCCH Internship Programme is open to those currently studying law at the Bachelor, Masters, J.D, and PhD. level and to those who have already been awarded a law degree or Masters.

Language requirements
The intern should speak at least one of the two official languages of the HCCH, English and French. Knowledge of the other official language is an asset. Knowledge of any other languages may also be an advantage.

Duties of the intern
Interns are, among other tasks, required to:

  • carry out research on particular points of private international law and/or comparative law, relevant to the operation of existing HCCH Conventions or to the future work of the HCCH;
  • take part in the preparation of HCCH meetings (e.g., Council on General Affairs and Policy, Working/Experts' Groups, Special Commissions, Diplomatic Sessions);
  • contribute to the promotion of the HCCH and its work, assisting with the preparation of presentations and collection of other information according to the needs of the staff of the Permanent Bureau.

In keeping with the role of the Permanent Bureau as the HCCH secretariat, applicants should bear in mind that the nature of the work assigned will generally be a combination of both legal and administrative work.

Internships offered by the Permanent Bureau are not remunerated. Successful applicants are responsible for their travel costs and expenses for the duration of the internship.

Successful applicants are encouraged to consider funding opportunities from their university or from other public and private organisations (e.g., scholarships, grants from research foundations, etc.).

Interns may, however, be eligible to receive a monthly allowance to cover part of their accommodation and living expenses if they meet the following criteria:

  1. the duration of the internship is no less than three months (i.e., 12 weeks); and
  2. the intern is not receiving additional funding or remuneration for the purposes of the internship (excluding travel expenses), from an institution, organisation or fund, the total of which exceeds the equivalent of €500 per month (i.e., exceeds €1,500 for a three-month internship, or €3,000 for a six-month internship).

Depending on available funds, the value of the monthly allowance may vary between €300 and €500. Prior to the commencement of their internship period, interns will be informed of the exact amount of the monthly allowance for that period.

The Permanent Bureau is not able to provide accommodation for interns, but successful applicants will be provided with a document from the Permanent Bureau with useful tips for finding accommodation in The Hague. Please note that successful applicants will be required, upon arrival, to provide an address for the purposes of registration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Interns must be covered by adequate insurance for the duration of the internship and will be asked to provide proof of this upon arrival at the Permanent Bureau. The chosen insurance policy must, at minimum, cover medical and hospital expenses, as well as the cost of repatriation to the country of residence.

Internship Policy and Confidentiality
Interns are bound by the HCCH Internship Policy, a copy of which will be made available to them prior to the commencement of the internship. Successful applicants will also be required to sign a confidentiality agreement.

Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific

As part of the application process, applicants may also ask to be considered for an internship at the HCCH Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific (ROAP), based in Hong Kong SAR. Please note, this is facilitated separately from internships in The Hague.

Work at ROAP may include assisting in the preparation of meetings, conferences, and seminars/webinars; assisting in the preparation of presentations; participating in the production of Newsletters; contributing to the promotion of the HCCH in the Asia and Pacific region; and conducting research on the application of private international law in the Asia and Pacific region, specifically in relation to the HCCH Conventions.

Applicants can undertake internships for any period between three weeks and six months, either in-person or online. Applicants must be able to work in English. There is no financial support available at this time and applicants will be responsible for covering all expenses related to the internship.

For additional information about ROAP internships, please contact

An FAQ section providing answers to frequently asked questions related to the HCCH Internship Programme is available here.

For additional information about the HCCH internship programme, please contact: