Pro bono in Amsterdam

Stibbe strives to use its legal expertise to make a real difference for individuals and NGOs and to make a positive contribution to society. Since 2002, Stibbe colleagues have been investing their time and effort to work on cases with a social impact, on a pro bono basis.

Our pro bono policy focuses on social relevance, the development of the law, and the rule of law in our society. This focus means we often deal with pro bono cases in which fundamental rights are at stake.

Requests for pro bono assistance are assessed by our pro bono committee, which consists of employees with expertise in various areas of law. The assessment is made in the light of the following criteria:

Pro bono criteria Stibbe Amsterdam 
When the pro bono commission decides to take on a case on a pro bono basis, the case is assigned to a team of lawyers within the firm with expertise in the relevant areas of law.

See below a small selection of the significant cases to which Stibbe has been able to contribute with its legal knowledge. Additionally, here you will find more information about the IMC Weekendschool.

Stibbe receives requests for pro bono assistance from within its own network or from Pro Bono Connect, the clearing house in which Stibbe is actively involved. If you would like to submit a request for pro bono assistance to Stibbe's pro bono committee, please contact us at

Stibbe publishes Q&A on coronavirus

Stibbe in Amsterdam answers questions from consumers, small businesses, foundations and NGOs about the coronavirus

The consequences of the coronavirus (COVID-19) affect almost everyone. The outbreak of the virus, and the subsequent measures to address it, are causing unrest and uncertainty.

In a special (Dutch language) Q&A, lawyers from our Amsterdam office share their legal expertise and strive to provide answers to questions put to us by consumers, self-employed persons, enterprises large and small, foundations and NGOs as a result of the corona crisis.

Download the Q&A

Stibbe advises Museum Ons' Lieve Heer op Solder

Stibbe advises Clara Wichmann and NJCM

Stibbe advises Clara Wichmann and NJCM on ‘Nu Niet Zwanger’ project

The Minister of Health, Welfare and Sports has imposed new obligations on the 'Nu Niet Zwanger' project of the GGD as a result of administrative appeal proceedings initiated by Bureau Clara Wichmann and the Dutch Lawyers Committee for Human Rights (NJCM). Stibbe assisted Bureau Clara Wichmann and the NJCM pro bono in these administrative appeal proceedings.

Stibbe advises multiple COVID-19 related initiatives

Stibbe advises the foundation of SVS

SVS represents the interests of women who became ill due to breast implants

SVS is an NGO that champions the cause of 4,000 women who say their breast implants have led to serious side effects. This claim was not necessarily accepted by the medical community as a whole. For years SVS has been trying to get the Ministry of Health to ban the use of implants until their side effects are clearly documented to enable women to make informed decisions about the procedure.

Stibbe advises WWF-Netherlands

Stibbe advises WWF-Netherlands regarding the Dutch procurement policy for sustainable wood

The Dutch government has expressed its intention to recognize the Malaysian Timber Certification System (MTCS) as evidence of sustainable wood for a two-year period, even though MTCS does not meet all official criteria. This is done to encourage full compliance with those criteria and means government agencies can use the wood in their building projects. The World Wild Fund for Nature, worried about the negative impact on the Malaysian rainforest and indigenous tribes, objected.

Stibbe paved the way for female SGP members

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Citing the right to freedom of expression, the Reformed Political Party (Dutch abbreviation: SGP) argued that while women can become a member of the SGP, they couldn’t vote within the party or stand for public office on behalf of it.

We took on the case on behalf of the NGOs against the SGP and the State, arguing that SGP’s position was in violation of the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women. The ultimate Supreme Court decision paved the way for female SGP members to decide for themselves whether to stand for office or not.

Stibbe protects students

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In 2011 the Dutch government expressed its intention to fine students €3,000 if they take too long to graduate. Student unions opposed to this change and approached Stibbe with a request for pro bono legal counsel.

Our lawyers spent several weeks on this complex case and concluded that the government’s proposal violated various legal principles and was unlawful. The student unions used our advice to lobby Parliament, but this was only partially successful. The case was then taken to court with the help of Stibbe.

Stibbe assists OXFAM/WWF

In 2012, we provided advice for the Legal Resource Initiative (LRI) created by Oxfam and the WWF in the preparation for the United Nations Climate Change Conference (UNFCCC), Cancun Summit in Mexico. This included matters in relation to the Kyoto Protocol (KP), public international law, an assessment of the Copenhagen Accord, the Gigaton Gap and the possible consequences between the first KP and the next.