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Japan > Labour and employment > Independent local firms > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings


Index of tables

  1. Labour and employment: independent local firms
  2. Leading individuals: bengoshi
  3. Next generation lawyers: bengoshi

Next generation lawyers: bengoshi

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Anderson Mori & Tomotsune’s leading business immigration figures include department heads Kazutoshi Kakuyama, Hideki Thurgood Kanoh and Yukiko Imazu. Labour expert Takaharu Matsumura handles restructuring and business rehabilitation, union negotiation and wage and staff reductions. Yuhki Tanaka excels in M&A-related matters, particularly employment transfers. Nobuhito Sawasaki has deep experience in employment benefit schemes, pensions and data privacy, as well as labour disputes and redundancies. In addition to conducting litigation, the team also counsels businesses on developing strategies to prevent disputes.

Led by Kunihiro Sumida, Atsumi & Sakai’s practice advises the Japanese subsidiaries of foreign companies on a diverse range of matters, including issues arising out of cross-border transactions. The team handles dismissals through working on termination schemes and settling disputes via mediation. Sumida undertook disputes involving claims such as sexual harassment and pay increases. Hiroyuki Sanbe handles disciplinary actions and cases surrounding the treatment of foreign employees, among other matters. Bonnie Dixon is also recommended.

At Mori Hamada & Matsumoto, practice head Chisako Takayaprovides a clear and steady way for clients to go’ for fixed-term employment issues, disciplinary measures, retirement disputes and other contentious matters. Domestic and foreign corporates retain the practice for a wide range of matters, including restructuring, staff migration and collective bargaining. The practice advised Bain Capital on transferring employees as part of its acquisition of Ooedo-Onsen Holdings. Taichi Arai is highly recommended, as is senior associate Yoshikazu Abe, who joined from Takai Okazeri Law Firm. Shiho Ono made partner and provides ‘clear advice’.

Management-focused Nagashima Ohno & Tsunematsu offers ‘good commercial advice’ to international businesses and their Japanese affiliates in restructurings, M&A-related employment matters, union relations and disputes. Under Hisaya Kimura, the ‘excellent’ department handles internal investigations and collective bargaining, as well as sexual harassment, non-competition covenants, unfair termination and trade secret litigation. Akihisa Shiozaki is adept in white-collar-related investigations, labour compliance and whistleblower cases, while Kimura undertakes workplace accident mandates. Masahiro Matsuoka, Jun Kanda, Norimitsu Arai and Koki Yanagisawa are highly regarded.

TMI Associates advises companies on establishing and operating personnel systems, M&A-related employment issues, trade union negotiations and immigration. Mie Fujimoto and Motoi Fujii handle contentious work, including internal investigations and harassment claims. The firm sets the standard for trade union matters involving unfair labour practices, collective bargaining and Labour Relations Commission proceedings. Downsizing and employment contracts are examples of non-contentious work.

Nishimura & Asahi’s expertise include restructuring, reforming personnel systems, bankruptcy issues and M&A-related work. The firm acts for employers – which include Mercedes-Benz and Nidec – in labour-management relations, and disputes and litigation. Practice head Michihiro Mori advised ClassNK on setting up a committee for supervising foreign workers in shipbuilding. Hisashi Miyatsuka and Osaka-based Taisuke Igaki are key figures.

Japanese corporates instruct Iwata Godo for advice on HR strategy and complying with new legislation, managing organisational changes arising from M&A transactions, handling tribunals and litigation, and advising on trade union relations. Negotiating departures and pension issues are additional strengths of Hirotaka Uranaka and Shinya Tago’s team. Counsel Hiroki Fujiwara is another contact.

Ushijima & Partners’ ‘business-focused’ practice provides support to foreign businesses that operate in Japan or are establishing a presence in the country. Led by Kenichi Kojima, the team also advises domestic clients and has particular expertise in overtime cases. Retirement, redundancy, performance management, health and safety, and non-competition agreements are other strengths.

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