Firm Profile > Kim & Chang > Seoul , South Korea

Kim & Chang
SEOUL 03170
South Korea

Antitrust and competition: local firms Tier 1

Over 100 attorneys comprise the antitrust and competition law practice group at Kim & Chang; led by practice head Kyung-Taek Jung, the lawyers are closely supported by the firm's seasoned in-house economists, forensic accountants and ex-Korea Fair Trade Commission (KFTC) officials. Merger clearance work before the KFTC is a key piece of the practice, as is defending clients in investigations by the Commission. Cases handled in the latter space are varied in the allegations involved, covering abuse of superior bargaining position, abuse of market dominance, discriminatory treatment, unfair trade practices and cartels. Youngjin Jung has previous experience as a member of the cartel advisory board of the KFTC while Tae-Kyu Kang is the name to note for contested merger filings. The team welcomed a high number of recent new arrivals, including Min-Ho Lee from Lee & Ko (June 2019) and Hyun Gyu Lee from Bae, Kim & Lee LLC (September 2018).

Banking and finance: local firms Tier 1

Kim & Chang's varied client roster in the banking and finance space comprises domestic and foreign commercial banks, investment banks, securities firms, private equity funds and asset management firms. Besides a steady flow of transaction work, the group also handles fund formation, restructuring, litigation and alternative dispute mandates. Ie Hwan Yoo and Young Min Kim have expertise in acquisition financing and aircraft financing respectively. Hi Sun Yoon is the name to note for shipping financing work in addition to aircraft financing work. Senior foreign attorney Hoin Lee, who specialises in structured finance work, is also recommended. Key contact Kye Sung Chung is team head.

Capital markets: local firms Tier 1

Kim & Chang takes a multidisciplinary approach to capital markets, the team works hand in hand with counterparts in the tax, competition, insolvency and labour practices. Areas of expertise include IPOs, public and private offering of equity-linked securities, credit and equity-linked derivatives, asset backed securities, hybrid bonds and straight bonds. It also advises on transaction structure, regulatory issues and tax. Myoung-Jae Chung is recommended for his expertise in M&A, capital markets transactions, derivatives and investment funds. Senior associate Kwon Eui Park focuses on M&A, securities transactions, securities regulations and corporate governance.

Corporate and M&A: local firms Tier 1

Kyung Taek Jung leads Kim & Chang's first-rate corporate and M&A team, which distinguishes itself in headline deals at the premium end of the market. Equally highly regarded by Korean and international clients, its recent work included Yun Goo KwonYunbak ChungYoungjin Jung and others advising Hyundai Heavy Industries on its circa KRW2.09tn takeover bid for Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co., Ltd. Also notable is that, in 2018, a group led by Sookyung Lee and Byung Min Choi acted for a consortium comprising of Macquarie Korea Opportunities Management and SK Telecom on its $2.64bn acquisition of ADT Caps from Carlyle Group. Jong-Koo Park has a track record in market-shaping M&A and private equity transactions which date back to the late 1990s. Young Man HuhBo Yong AhnYoung Jay RoJoon KimJong Hyun Park and Teo Kim are among many other standout names in the team.

Dispute resolution: local firms Tier 1

Kim & Chang has a standout reputation acting for clients in reputationally-sensitive cases of the utmost complexity and significance. In addition to fielding a first-rate team of experienced litigators, the firm is able to leverage the expertise of patent attorneys, accountants and industry experts in complex matters. The team's strengths span multiple areas, including securities litigation, white-collar/regulatory investigations, M&A-related disputes, insurance and competition cases. Jay J. KimSang Yoon LeeSung Jin Kim and CY Chooyoun Kim are defending a company against product liability claims brought by multiple plaintiffs over injuries sustained as a result of using humidifier sanitisers. The team has also assisted with related criminal proceedings and government investigations connected with the matter. Sang Ho Han, Hye Kwang Lee, Sungwook Kim and Chul-Won Lee are representing Philip Morris Korea in a longrunning lawsuit brought by the Korean National Health Insurance Service (NHIS). NHIS first brought the damages against tobacco manufacturers in 2014 in relation to policyholders being diagnosed with lung cancer and laryngeal cancer. Sun Seong Park leads the firm's banking litigation team. Jin Yeong Chung and Chang Beom Ryu are among many other names to note.

Insurance: local firms Tier 1

Kim & Chang's insurance team's core areas of focus include regulatory, licensing and general commercial issues. Jay Ahn is a key figure and focuses on transactions and regulatory mandates. Hyun Wook Shin is also very active in advising on regulations and commercial matters, as is Joon Young Kim. The team has recently been boosted with the arrival of Stephane Min Gyu PARK  from Prudential Life Korea.

Intellectual property: local firms Tier 1

'Highly knowledgeable, responsive and accurate', the IP department at Kim & Chang is led by Jay (Young-June) Yang. The department comprises several sub-practices which liaise seamlessly to cover the full range of IP work; these are the patent practice, the trade mark practice, the IP litigation practice and the IP transactional practice. Key areas of operation include patent infringement litigation, domestic and foreign patent prosecution, patent due diligence for transactions and support on US-based IP litigation (including pre-trial discovery document review and deposition support). Senior patent attorney Young Kim boasts a track record of handling numerous landmark cases at the supreme court. Also recommended on this front is Man Gi Paik.

International arbitration Tier 1

Kim & Chang's network, broad industry coverage and ability to leverage cross-practice support enable it to assist clients with all complex issues associated with international arbitrations and related civil/criminal proceedings. Byung-Chol Yoon and Eun Young Park jointly lead the widely respected team in Seoul, which is increasingly active in arbitrations in the shipbuilding, offshore and energy spheres. Byung-Woo Im and Kay-Jannes Wegner (who both co-head the specialist construction arbitration practice) advised a Korean engineering and construction company on a Seoul-seated ICC arbitration, which was centred on a dispute with another Korean construction company over a supply contract for major equipment for one of the biggest power and water projects in the Middle East. In another matter, Yoon, Una Cho and others are representing four different financial investors as the claimants in an ICC arbitration against an individual shareholder of a life insurance company; the dispute concerns the individual shareholder’s alleged failure to honour a put option exercised by the financial investors under a shareholders' agreement. Chul-Won Lee's wide-ranging experience includes disputes involving shipbuilding, international trade, insurance and M&A. Other names to note include Joel RichardsonSungjean SeoHye Sung Kim and Sejong YounDon Jeon is a recent hire from Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer. In 2018, Edern Coent and Jae Ha Kwon joined from the ICC International Court of Arbitration and Bae, Kim & Lee LLC respectively. Dong-Seok (Johan) Oh moved to KL Partners.

Labour and employment: local firms Tier 1

Attorneys, certified public labor consultants, accountants and HR professionals together comprise the seamless full-service labour and employment department at Kim & Chang. The breadth of experts in the practice ensures the firm can provide employee relations consulting, compensation and benefits design and post-merger integration services in addition to its core legal assistance. In the latter space, the group handles both contentious and non-contentious matters for corporations from a range of sectors including TMT, industrial and manufacturing, consumer goods and insurance. Chun Wook Hyun heads up the team together with Weon Jung Kim. Senior attorney Hyun Jae Park is another key practitioner who often supports clients with corporate restructuring, early retirement plans, employee privacy and wage and hour claims. The firm welcomed Seon Yeong Kwon from Seoul Central District Prosecutors’ Office in August 2018; Kwon boasts extensive experience in criminal liability matters arising from labour and employment violations.

Projects and energy: local firms Tier 1

Kim & Chang's projects and energy practice acts for sponsors, construction firms, investors and lenders. The firm has advised Korean companies working on projects in a range of countries including China, Vietnam and Indonesia. The team is co led by Yon-Kyun Oh and Ick-Ryol Huh. Oh advised Taekwang Power on the multi jurisdictional Nam Dinh project worth $500m. Huh works in project finance, with domestic and offshore experience. Young-Kyun Cho acted as lead partner advising Asset Management Multi Asset Global Investments on the project financing of Samcheok Thermal Power Plant worth $4.2bn. Claire (Mi-Jin) Kim is an expert on project finance, energy matters and litigation and is likewise recommended.

Real estate: local firms Tier 1

Kim & Chang’s real estate practice has recently been advising its clients on novel REIT issues and overseas acquisitions – both through REF and REIT structures. The group is jointly led by Yon-Kyun Oh and Kwan-Sik Yu in Seoul with the support of Keun Ah Cho who has substantial experience in tax-efficient real property investment structures such as REITs, business transfers, project financings, share acquisitions, and acquisitions under insolvency proceedings. Also notable are Sang Min Lee and David Pyun.

Regulatory: compliance and investigations: local firms Tier 1

According to one client, Kim & Chang's corporate investigations & white collar defence practice group is 'stronger than other law firms with regard to the seamless collaboration between its Korean and foreign attorneys'. The department is split into two subgroups, one focusing on domestic companies and the other on foreign companies, ensuring the firm can provide a truly bespoke service. Clients from a broad range of sectors regularly instruct the firm, including those from particularly niche or highly regulated areas such as financial services, insurance, aviation and defence. Michael Yu is an expert in the latter sector. The practice was recently marked by a large influx of mandates from major players in the automotive industry, especially on matters concerning emissions or homologation. Kook Hyun Yoo is team head and Ho-Keun Ryu is also recommended.

Regulatory: compliance and investigations: local firms Tier 1

Kim & Chang is noted for the ‘experience of team members’ and the quality of its ‘local, international and forensic knowledge’. The practice is divided into two separate teams of criminal defence attorneys, one which caters the firm’s international clients and another which focuses on the domestic market. Sector expertise encompasses aerospace, defence, insurance, finance and the automotive industry. Practice head Kook Hyun Yoo provides experience in representing both major Korean conglomerates and leading global entities while Ho-Keun Ryu delivers expertise in embezzlement, breach of trust, bribery and corruption.

Shipping: local firms Tier 1

Kim & Chang's market-leading reputation in shipping is underpinned by its extensive coverage of a full range of shipping disputes, where it acts for domestic and foreign shipowners, P&I clubs and insurance companies. Byung-Suk Chung leads the team, which is experienced in contentious matters involving shipbuilding contracts, accidents at sea, charter party disputes, insolvency proceedings and insurance issues. Chung's standing in the industry is reflected by the fact that he serves as the president of the Seoul Maritime Arbitration Association, among other notable roles. Chul-Won Lee and Sungjean Seo are advising a client on LMAA arbitration proceedings arising from a dispute over shipbuilding contracts for the engineering and construction of four semi-submersible drilling rigs. Clients also benefit from the expertise of Jin Hong LeeJae-Bok Lee and Joon Hwan Park.

Tax: local firms Tier 1

'Enthusiasm and eagerness to meet the needs of clients' are the core strengths of the tax practice group at Kim & Chang, which is led by key practitioners Woo Hyun Baik and Byung-Moon Jung. The team comprises an integrated pricing and customs sub-practice and offers a broad range of services including assistance with tax planning, tax advice on corporate transactions, applications for tax exemptions, applications for tax rulings and transfer pricing studies. Most impressive is the firm's litigious tax work which sees the group defending taxpayer positions up to and including the supreme court, often on issues for which there is little or no legal precedent. Tae Yeon Nam and Hae Ma Joong Kim are highly recommended. Also of note is Sang Woo Lee, who specialises in tax dispute resolution and audits.

TMT: local firms Tier 1

Kim & Chang act for a diverse range of clients, ranging from broadcasting and telecommunications companies, hardware and software, online service providers to online game developers and e-commerce businesses. Its team 'has insights into the relevant industry areas and government practice, allowing them to provide guidance that is not just based on the law but also practice'. Key figures in the sizeable team include practice head Dong Shik Choi, Min Chul Park, Brian Oh and Seong-Hyeon Bang.

Established in 1973, Kim & Chang is Korea’s premier law firm with a market leading position in all major practice areas including antitrust and competition; banking; capital markets; corporate investigations and white collar defense; environment; financial regulation and compliance; financing; fintech; health; insolvency and restructuring; insurance; intellectual property; international arbitration and cross-border litigation; international trade and customs; labor and employment; litigation; mergers and acquisitions; privacy and data security; private equity; real estate; securities; shipping; tax; and technology, media and telecommunications.

Our strong foundation is built on the breadth and depth of our talent. Our professionals include lawyers, tax lawyers, patent and trademark attorneys, accountants, and other subject matter and industry experts totaling more than 1,500 professionals today. Our teams work seamlessly in close coordination with each other with the highest commitment to creating innovative solutions to the legal and business challenges that our clients face.

Based in Seoul, with offices in Hong Kong and Ho Chi Minh City, we are particularly known for our cross-border expertise. We have advised on some of the largest, most complex and demanding transactions and legal challenges in Korea and around the world. We have built a track record of “first-of-its-kind”, groundbreaking solutions that have had a profound impact on the law and business. Our attorneys are licensed in multiple jurisdictions, including Australia, Belgium, Canada, China, England and Wales, France, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, the US and Vietnam in addition to Korea. With our growing regional networks and collaborative relationships with reputable law firms across Asia and around the globe, our clients with multi-jurisdictional interests have come to rely on us as a “one-stop shop” of the highest quality.

Number of professionals : 1,500+

[KIM & CHANG] Top-ranked in All 16 Practice Areas Surveyed – The Legal 500 Asia Pacific 2018

In the recently published The Legal 500 Asia Pacific 2018, one of the legal industry’s most prominent guides to the legal market in Asia, Kim & Chang was the only Korean law firm to be top-ranked ("Tier 1") in all 16 practice areas surveyed.  Particularly noteworthy is the fact that our IP group was the only Tier 1-ranked practice to be recognized in the “Intellectual property – Patents and Trademarks” category.

[KIM & CHANG] Making and Donating Kimchi to the Community

On November 18, 2017, more than 40 Kim & Chang attorneys and K&C Friends (staff volunteers) of Kim & Chang Committee for Social Contribution volunteered in gimjang, a Korean tradition of preparing large quantities of kimchi for the winter.  Volunteers gathered early in the morning to learn how to do gimjang, and helped to make kimchi.  The kimchi prepared through this event was  donated to 100 foster care families supported by the Central Foster Care Family Center .

[KIM & CHANG] Highest Rankings in All 18 Practice Areas – Asialaw Profiles 2018

Kim & Chang was the only Korean law firm to receive “Outstanding,” the highest possible ranking, across all 18 practice areas in the 22nd edition of Asialaw Profiles 2018, a definitive guide to Asia-Pacific’s leading regional and domestic law firms.  Additionally, we were the only Korean firm to be awarded “Outstanding” in the Financial Services Regulatory and Intellectual Property practice areas. 

[KIM & CHANG] Delivering Coal Briquettes to Low-income Families and the Elderly Living Alone in…

On December 9, 2017, Kim & Chang attorneys and K&C Friends (staff volunteers) of Kim & Chang Committee for Social Contribution together with youth members of Deulggot Youth World, an organization dedicated to caring for and educating children in need, delivered coal briquettes to a jjokbang town in Seoul’s Yeongdeungpo District.  Jjokbang towns are low-income neighborhoods comprised of tenement housings with small rooms that barely accommodate one person.  

The volunteers delivered the briquettes to low-income families, the elderly living alone, and others in the jjokbang town with hopes to give them a warmer winter.

[KIM & CHANG] Highest Number of Wins Among Korean Firms – Asian-MENA Counsel Firms of the Year 2017

In the recently published Representing Corporate Asia and Middle East Survey, an annual ranking survey published by Asian-MENA Counsel, Kim & Chang won "In-House Community Firm of the Year" in 14 categories.

[KIM & CHANG] Second Law Academy of 2017 at Gyeongsan Multicultural Family Support Center

On October 31, 2017, Kim & Chang Committee for Social Contribution hosted its second Multicultural Family Law Academy for 2017, a “mobile” legal service for multicultural families in Korea, in the City of Gyeongsan in Gyeongsangbuk-do Province.  The first session was held in the City of Gimje in Jeollabuk-do Province earlier in 2017.

[KIM & CHANG] “Asia-Pacific Firm of the Year” – Asialaw Asia-Pacific Legal Practice Awards 2017

On November 28, 2017, Kim & Chang was recognized as the "Asia-Pacific Firm of the Year" in the inaugural Asialaw Asia-Pacific Legal Practice Awards. 

[KIM & CHANG] Korea’s Top Law Firm in the Asia-Pacific – The American Lawyer’s Asia 50 (2017)

According to the latest "Asia 50," an annual special feature published by The American Lawyer, Kim & Chang ranked 11th among the top 50 Asia-Pacific law firms.

[KIM & CHANG] Still Among Largest Asian Law Firms and Biggest in Korea – ALB Asia’s Top 50 (2017)

According to “Asia’s Top 50,” a feature story in the November issue of Asian Legal Business (ALB), Kim & Chang is the 12th largest Asian law firm, with the top 11 being China-based firms.  Our firm continues to lead this chart among Korean firms, and once again, this is the highest ranking for a Korean firm.  

[KIM & CHANG] “Korea Law Firm of the Year” for the 5th Consecutive Year – ALB Korea Law Awards 2017

Kim & Chang was once again named "Korea Law Firm of the Year" at the ALB Korean Law Awards 2017, a recognition we have won five consecutive times since these awards began in 2012.  Our firm was also once again honored with the highest number of recognitions at this year's ceremony held on November 16 at the Grand Hyatt in Seoul. 

[KIM & CHANG] Top Rankings Across All 19 Practice Areas Surveyed – Chambers Asia-Pacific 2018

In the 2018 edition of the prestigious legal guide, Chambers Asia-Pacific, Kim & Chang was the only law firm in Korea to receive top rankings (“Band 1”) across all 19 practice areas surveyed.

[KIM & CHANG] Top Tier in All Six Areas Surveyed – IFLR 1000

Kim & Chang has consolidated its position as the leading law firm in Korea ranking “Tier 1” across all six practice areas in the 2018 edition of IFLR1000 Financial & Corporate.  We are the only Korean firm to receive top tier rankings in all categories for 14 consecutive years. 

In addition, IFLR named nine Kim & Chang attorneys as "Highly Regarded," two as "Market Leader," and one attorney as a "Rising Star."  According to IFLR, our firm "dominates the market and is routinely involved in the best mandates available across all practice areas."  

[KIM & CHANG] Only Korean Firm Among the World’s Top 100 Law Firms- The American Lawyer’s Global 1

For the fourth year in a row, Kim & Chang is the only ranked law firm in Korea among the world’s largest law firms in the American Lawyer's “The Global 100" report.  

[KIM & CHANG] “South Korea Firm of the Year” for the Seventh Year – China Law & Pr

At the China Law & Practice Awards 2017, Kim & Chang won "South Korea Firm of the Year.”  This is the seventh consecutive year that our firm’s China Practice has received such recognition.  Further, we are the only Korean firm to be so named.   

[KIM & CHANG] “National Law Firm of the Year” – Asialaw Asia-Pacific Dispute Resolution Awards 2017

On September 28, at the prestigious third annual Asialaw Asia-Pacific Dispute Resolution Awards 2017, Kim & Chang was named "National Law Firm of the Year - South Korea," along with top recognition in one other major category. 

[KIM & CHANG] Who’s Who Legal Names Kim & Chang as “Korea Law Firm of the Year”

On May 15, 2017, Who’s Who Legal awarded Kim & Chang “Country and State Awards 2017: Korea.”  This is the twelfth consecutive year that the firm has received this recognition.

[KIM & CHANG] Who’s Who Legal Names Kim & Chang as the “Pro Bono Firm of the Year” in Global S

Kim & Chang is pleased to announce that it was named as “Pro Bono Law Firm of the Year” by Who’s Who Legal for our firm’s steadfast commitment to pro bono work and for providing phenomenal services in 2016.  Also, Kim & Chang is the only Asian law firm to be recognized as one of the top 10 leading law firms in the world for its pro bono services for four consecutive years. 

[KIM & CHANG] Ranked 4th in the Acritas Asia Pacific Law Firm Brand Index 2017

In the recently announced Acritas “Asia Pacific Law Firm Brand Index 2017,” Kim & Chang was again recognized as a top 5 law firm brand in the AP region.  Our fourth ranking is the highest distinction earned by a local firm.  The top 3 firms are global firms with regional offices worldwide.

[KIM & CHANG] “Best Asian Law Firm 2017: Gold Award” at International Legal Alliance Summit & Aw

On June 15, 2017, at The International Legal Alliance Summit & Awards 2017, Kim & Chang received the Gold Award – the highest recognition – in the “Best Asian Law Firm 2017” category.   

[KIM & CHANG] “South Korea Tax Firm of the Year” at the 2017 Asia Tax Awards

On May 4, 2017, Kim & Chang was named “South Korea Tax Firm of the Year” and “Asia Tax Transactions Firm of the Year” at the 2017 Asia Tax Awards. 

[KIM & CHANG] Winner of Asian-MENA Counsel Deals of the Year 2016

"Hyundai Merchant Marine Restructuring," one of Kim & Chang's 2016 representations, was among the 38 “Winning Deals” chosen by Asian-MENA Counsel for its annual “Deals of the Year” awards.  

[KIM & CHANG] Top Rankings for All 7 Practice Categories in Chambers Global 2017

In the 2017 edition of Chambers Global – a global-wide leading law firm directory, published by Chambers & Partners – Kim & Chang received top rankings (“Band 1”) in all 7 practice areas surveyed.

[KIM & CHANG] Highest Ranking Among South Korean Law Firms in the Chambers Asia-Pacific 2017

Kim & Chang was top ranked (“Band 1”) in all 18 practice areas surveyed in the 2017 edition of Chambers Asia-Pacific, a leading law firm directory of Asia-Pacific region, published by Chambers & Partners.  

[KIM & CHANG] “National Law Firm of the Year: Korea” at the IFLR Asia Awards 2017

For the 15th consecutive year, Kim & Chang was recognized as the “National Law Firm of the Year: Korea” at the IFLR Asia Awards 2017.

[KIM & CHANG] “Compliance/Investigations Firm of the Year” at the Asia Legal Awards 2017

For the second consecutive year, Kim & Chang was recognized as the "Compliance/Investigations Firm of the Year" at the Asia Legal Awards 2017.  On February 22nd, “The Asian Lawyer” – an affiliate of ALM, a world-renowned legal media group – hosted the awards ceremony at Hong Kong’s Four Seasons Hotel, to honor Asia’s top lawyers, law firms, and in-house teams.


[KIM & CHANG] “Korea Firm of the Year 2016” in 19 Practice Areas Surveyed – Asian-MENA Counsel

Kim & Chang was named as “Korea Firm of the Year” in 19 practice areas in the 10th annual “Representing Corporate Asia & Middle East Survey,” which was conducted and announced by Asian-MENA Counsel magazine.  

[KIM & CHANG] No. 1 M&A Advisor in Korea – Bloomberg Asia Pacific Legal Advisory M&A Rankings 2016

Kim & Chang was ranked as the No. 1 M&A advisor in Korea - both by volume and deal count - with 110 deals worth USD 27.565 billion in the Bloomberg Asia-Pacific Legal Advisory M&A Rankings 2016.

[KIM & CHANG] No. 1 M&A Advisor in Korea – Mergermarket M&A League Tables of Legal Advisors 2016

According to the “Mergermarket M&A League Tables of Legal Advisors 2016,” Kim & Chang ranks as the No. 1 M&A advisor in South Korea by deal value and count (USD 22.994 billion and 80 counts).

[KIM & CHANG] Ranked 68th among the 100 largest law firms – The American Lawyer’s Global 100 (2016

Kim & Chang has been named in the "Global 100," a special feature of The American Lawyer, a renowned US-based legal magazine, for three years in a row.  Our firm was ranked among the Top 100 firms in each of the following charts: 68th on the "Most Lawyers (rank by number of lawyers)", 59th on the “Most Revenue (rank by gross revenue)”, 46th on the “Most Profits Per Partners (rank by profits per partners).  Kim & Chang is the only Korean firm to be listed on these charts.

[KIM & CHANG] Korea Law Firm of the Year – China Law & Practice Awards 2016

Kim & Chang was selected as “Korea Law Firm of the Year” at China Law & Practice Awards 2016, an event hosted by China Law & Practice, an affiliate of ALM, a world-renowned legal media group.  Kim & Chang has been recognized as “Korea Law Firm of the Year” for sixth consecutive years.

[KIM & CHANG] Tier 1 in M&A in South Korea – ALB M&A Rankings 2016

Kim & Chang was recognized as one of the leading M&A firms in South Korea, named as a Tier 1 firm in the ALB (Asian Legal Business) M&A Rankings 2016, a feature article in the September 2016 issue of ALB.

[KIM & CHANG] Leading Tax Advisory Firm – World Tax 2017

Kim & Chang was selected as one of the leading (Tier 1) tax advisory firms in Korea by World Tax 2017.