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Nov 28, 2013

Status of Interns Under the Korean Labor Standards Act: Employees Entitled to Severance/Minimum Wage?


Interns in Korea may be considered Employees under the Korean Labor Standards Act, thus, entitling the interns to minimum wage, severance and the numerous other protections and benefits under the Act.   The matter is having an impact on franchises, entertainment companies, and other SMEs.

The, incredibly vague, Employment & Labor Ministry Guideline 826 (April 7, 2009) notes, in part, that:
If a person is considered an employee under the Labor Standards Act shall be determined by considering the subordinate relations with the employer collectively - with regard to the details of job, supervision by the employer, disciplinary actions, capability to ignore work orders and the type of wages paid, etc.  In cases when students provide work to an employer to gain academic credit with no promise to hire via a academic-industrial cooperation agreement, even though the agreement contains working hours, a stipend, social insurances, etc. the students are, generally, not considered employees.  However, in evaluating the employment contract made with a company, if the work is essentially similar to the provisions of the labor service, and conducted under the supervision of an employer, the trainees can be considered employees. 
The Guideline contains little specific guidance.  However, courts have been pragmatic and, typically, interns that are hired for a few month period of time shortly after graduation for university are considered mere interns.

The fear we have and that is, already, showing its ugly head is that less internships will be available.  Many of us began our careers as interns and proved our worth through these internships.  We may have never got our foot in the door without these internships.  Hopefully, this reality with be consistently reiterated by the attorneys litigating these cases and Labor Scrivener/Paralegal (노무사) will push this issue at the Labor Boards.   


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SeanHayes@ipglegal.com

IPG is engaged in projects for companies and entrepreneurs doing business in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Vietnam and the U.S.

www.ipglegal.com

Korean Pro-North Priest Investigated By Prosecution


Chang-Shin Park a Jeonju diocese senior priest is being investigated by the Joenju District Prosecutors Office.  The priest made peculiar remarks defending the 2010 shelling by North Korea of a South Korean occupied island on the West Coast of Korea. The shelling led to the death of two Korean civilians and a Korean Marine.  The argument justified the shelling by noting that North Korea, inter alia, is just protecting its territory as South Korea is doing on Dokdo Island.

A priest justifying the killing of civilians by North Korea for purposes of defending tiny islets seems a little peculiar to this observer and seems to show that Korea has a radical liberal element that may be more pro North than South. 

The comments by Chang-Shin Park was slammed by other priests and also the nation's president.  A group of priests are considering reporting the actions of Park to the Vatican.

Seemingly, the priest would be prosecuted under the National Security Law.



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SeanHayes@ipglegal.com

IPG is engaged in projects for companies and entrepreneurs doing business in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Vietnam and the U.S.

www.ipglegal.com

Asian Legal News for the Week of November 24, 2013

This Week's Asian Legal News Reported by Media


Most Recent Posts from The Asian Law Blog

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SeanHayes@ipglegal.com

IPG is engaged in projects for companies and entrepreneurs doing business in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Vietnam and the U.S.

www.ipglegal.com

Nov 24, 2013

Should UPP be Banned in Korea? Korea Government Files to Court to deregister Pro-North Party

The Park Administration as filed to the Constitutional Court of Korea a complaint to disband the leftist UPP.  The petition claims that the party engaged in pro-North Korea activities.  The case, also, calls for the immediate suspension of six of the lawmakers of the party.

Justice Minister Hwang Kyo-ahn noted to the press that:
"We have determined that the UPP’s platform and its objectives are intended to favor North Korean socialism, which goes against the free democratic basic order of our Constitution and that the activities of the RO (Revolutionary Organization) which forms the party’s core, were in line with North Korea’s strategy to revolutionize the South."  

This is not mere politics.  Evidence exists, including tape recordings, that establish that a leader of the UPP called on members to prepare for a war to assist North Korea in overthrowing North Korea.

At least six of the nine justices at the Constitutional Court must vote to disband the party for the party to be banned.

What do you think?
_________
Sean Hayes may be contacted at: SeanHayes@ipglegal.com.

Sean Hayes is co-chair of the Korea Practice Team and Entertainment, Media and New Tech Law Team at IPG Legal. He is the first non-Korean attorney to have worked for the Korean court system (Constitutional Court of Korea) and one of the first non-Koreans to be a regular member of a Korean law faculty. He assists clients in their contentious, non-contentious and business developments needs in Korea and China.

Nov 21, 2013

Asian Legal News for the Week of November 17, 2013

This Week's Asian Legal News Reported by Media

Most Recent Posts from The Asian Law Blog

_____
SeanHayes@ipglegal.com

IPG is engaged in projects for companies and entrepreneurs doing business in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Vietnam and the U.S.

www.ipglegal.com

Applying for a D-8 Investment Visa in Korea: The Basics

We often receive requests for information from potential clients overseas that want to open a business or office in Korea.  The potential clients are often lost, don't know where to start, and have very generalized questions about what they should do.  We often begin by helping to counsel these potential clients regarding which visa they'll be applying for to get things moving.

We often advise that one of the more common visas to apply for is the D-8 investment visa.  It's also possible to open a business on some of the "F long-term stay" visas, however, most will not qualify without significant time in Korea or family in Korea.

Thus, for most people who are new to the peninsula, the D-8 investment visa is usually the way to go.  Here is a basic list of requirements for an applicant investing not less than KRW 100,000,000:
  • Application for a visa (or Confirmation letter of visa issuance).
  • Passport (or a photocopy of a passport in the case of applications for a Confirmation letter of visa issuance).
  • Photocopy of a certificate of FDI company registration. 
  • Photocopy of a business registration certificate or incorporation register, if applicable.
  • Certificate of declaration of a foreign currency (issued by the Customs Office).
  • Certificate of remittance issued by the relevant bank (Minimum of KRW 100,000,000).
  • Photocopy of foreign currency purchase certificate. 
  • Photocopy of office lease contract. 
  • Photocopy of bank book. 
  • Business Plan

_________
Sean Hayes may be contacted at: SeanHayes@ipglegal.com.

Sean Hayes is co-chair of the Korea Practice Team and Entertainment, Media and New Tech Law Team at IPG Legal. He is the first non-Korean attorney to have worked for the Korean court system (Constitutional Court of Korea) and one of the first non-Koreans to be a regular member of a Korean law faculty.

He assists clients in their contentious, non-contentious and business developments needs in Korea and China.

Nov 20, 2013

K-Pop Star Psy and Currency Swaps - Interesting Article on the Continued Ascent of "Brand Korea"

Reuters, in a new article co-written by Se Young Lee and Christine Kim, has made out yet another case for the impressive popularity of "Brand Korea."  Korea's government recently announced three currency swap deals worth more than USD 20 billion.  What makes things truly remarkable about all this is that Korea is able to couple its economic prosperity with cultural influence in Asia and, now, even North America.

The result, as we know, is a booming situation on the peninsula where the impression is that everything is going to continue to get better.

The article notes, amongst other things, that:
"[Korea] can easily afford to match cultural diplomacy with economic muscle as it competes with Japan and China for influence. K-Pop icons such as Psy, whose 'Gangnam Style' hit went viral in 2012, and even Korean food are used by Seoul to build South Korea's brand, while Samsung Electronics Co Ltd. and Hyundai Motor Co. are firms with global reach...."
That about sums it up, as far as I'm concerned.  Things definitely seem to be looking up on the Korean Peninsula.  If you'd like to read more, check out the full article below.
With Psy and Currency Swaps, South Korea Grabs Global Influence.

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SeanHayes@ipglegal.com

IPG is engaged in projects for companies and entrepreneurs doing business in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Vietnam and the U.S.

www.ipglegal.com

Nov 19, 2013

Can Koreans Perceive Foreigners as Part of the Tribe? by Senior Advisor Tom Coyner

Living abroad offers interesting and frustrating challenges. Having lived half my life in East Asia, I have long accepted that the trade-off in having an above-average existence comes with above-average potential irritations. That is, if one really gives a damn about what is happening, living in Asia can drive the well-intentioned expatriate up the wall. On the other hand, if one rationalizes what is happening in the immediate community is none of the foreigners’ business, life can be much simpler and more pleasant.

A recent case in point came in the guise of an e-mail from an American friend who has lived in Korea for more than 40 years. Having lived here more than two-thirds of his life and being bilingual in Korean, he often seems more Korean than Western. But even before he arrived as a Peace Corps volunteer, he had developed a passion for older architecture. In time, he has developed a deeper understanding and appreciation for the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910) and early 20th-century Korean buildings than even Korean experts. In fact, today, the Korean media have given him the nickname of the “hanok jikimi” - “protector (literally translated “keeper”) of hanok.”

My friend lives in a traditional hanok house and has defended his well-maintained neighborhood from being demolished by private land developers.

Returning to the aforementioned e-mail, my friend alerted several “old Korea hands” about the plans to yet again redevelop Insa-dong. On Aug. 22, the Seoul Metropolitan Government announced a city development plan that could turn what remains of a traditional entertainment neighborhood into a modern, more profitable commercial zone. Seoul newspaper articles quoted bureaucrats announcing lifting a 35-year ban on developing the district. Details of the plan are not yet clear, but initial announcements give good reason to be concerned. That left me scratching my head, since a great deal of development supported by landlords was done over the protests of the more aesthetically inclined shopkeepers.

Specifically, according to newspaper articles, the permitted number of floors will be increased from one or two floors, in keeping with previous restrictions and traditional standards, to three or four floors, more in common with shopping malls. Citing concerns for pedestrian convenience and emergency vehicle access, the minimum alley width will be increased from two meters to four meters. Of course, to do this means tearing down many of the hanok and other older buildings lining small alleyways.

While I can sympathize for the need for greater access of fire engines, etc., I also recognize the absurdity. I live in a traditional community with widened alleys - clogged with illegally parked vehicles, making the area inaccessible for larger emergency vehicles. The concern with fire safety can be addressed with alternative facilities, such as increasing the number of fire hydrants in the alleys and installing smoke detectors, sprinkler systems and other fire prevention and mediation equipment in the buildings.

Kim Ji-ho, an official in charge of the city’s urban planning bureau, was quoted as saying, “The project’s goal is to increase the value of the city. The city government will try its best to preserve Insa-dong’s historical features.” Given my observations over the decades, I suspect there is greater concern about increasing the value than preserving historical features.

And this is where the long-term Seoul residents, Koreans and foreigners alike, may get involved. According to the city, Insa-dong will go into redevelopment after the city planning commission makes a final announcement in October. Until then, foreign preservationists plan to organize a pushback on the tentative plans.

While I’m sure there are also Korean preservationists, there are some fundamental differences between native and foreign preservation attitudes. At the risk of oversimplification, one may say that foreign preservationists believe in preserving as much as possible of the originality of the buildings so long as the structure is not a safety hazard. Native preservationists tend to preserve just the overall structural frame with a few essential bits and rebuild massively around these primary parts of a structure.

Aesthetically, the foreign approach preserves many of the details that in aggregate may comprise the greatest preservation cultural values. Whereas the native approach works along the lines that what is non-essential and old should be replaced to ensure the long-term viability of the structure; sadly, in most cases the building owners and local bureaucrats simply do not accept that originality of form and structural components is what creates the uniquely Korean cultural value. Incidentally, there is a lot more money to be made in pursuing the local approach versus the foreign methods.

So what happens, when a historical building is preserved, too often only the primary beams and pillars along with some of the foundations, and if one is lucky, the original roof tiles are kept. The rest goes to the scrap heap. A good example is Sungnyemun, often called “Namdaemun.” Much of what went up in flames in 2008 was material built into the gate during the 1962 major renovation project when it was razed and rebuilt.

In other words, much of what had survived the Japanese invasion of 300 years ago, the 17th-century Manchu invasion, the Japanese colonial period of neglect and nearby blasts from the 1950-53 Korean War, was disassembled, with some components thrown away during the renovation project a half-century ago. And what happened to this monument, designated as National Treasure No. 1, has too often become the fate of other important as well as mundane architectural survivors.

I have often wondered aloud that if the natives don’t care about preservation beyond moneymaking opportunities, then why should the foreigners bother? If the foreigners think they know better and believe that future generations of Koreans may blame the present generation’s poor stewardship of national assets, is it the foreigners’ concern?

I can put together a coherent argument either way. But no matter how some of us foreigners may feel, Korea is not our country. Even foreigners with Korean citizenship are not “really Korean” in many local people’s opinion. So, as a foreigner, I may argue that I need not really give a damn. But as a global citizen, well, the issue becomes a bit more complicated.

*The author is president of Soft Landing Consulting, a sales-focused business development firm, and a senior adviser to the IPG Legal group.  The original article may be found at: Who really Cares - and Why?

By Tom Coyner

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SeanHayes@ipglegal.com

IPG is engaged in projects for companies and entrepreneurs doing business in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Vietnam and the U.S.

www.ipglegal.com

Nov 18, 2013

Samsung Investigated for Union Busting by Korean Ministry of Employment and Labor

A large part of Samsung's success has been its "good" relationship with the Korean government and its "no union" policy.  Samsung has been criticized for decades for receiving preferential treatment from the Korean government, because of relationships with government officials/politicans and perception that without Samsung the country is doomed.

Many in Korea have, also, criticized Samsung for its environmental practices, labor practices, abuse of suppliers and gauging of local consumers.  Much of the criticisms have, at least, some merit.

The government may be changing its practices with regard to Samsung.  An opposition party has revealed a document produced by Samsung management that allegedly instructs management to encourage employees to disorganize trade unions if unions are established.

The document has led the Korean Metal Workers' Union, Lawyers for a Democratic Society and the People's Solidarity for Participatory Democracy to file a criminal complaint with the Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office against Chairman Lee Kun-hee and 10 other top executives of the company.  Lets see if the prosecution calls Chairman Lee.




The case has been referred to the Seoul office of the Ministry of Employment and Labor.  The Ministry will call the Accusers to the office first and, then, decide whether to conduct a full investigation.






Is the Korean government changing or it this an investigation that is going nowhere?

_____
SeanHayes@ipglegal.com

IPG is engaged in projects for companies and entrepreneurs doing business in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Vietnam and the U.S.

www.ipglegal.com

Nov 15, 2013

South Korea still Required to use Internet Explorer due to 1999 Law

A South Korean law that requires the use of Internet Explorer when making purchases online is still in effect today.  The Washington Post has brought attention to the fact that South Korea, while seemingly a high-tech country whose cell phone coverage reaches deep into the extensive subway system, is still legally mired in the past and required to use what is considered by most people to be an ineffective and unpopular browser.

In 1999, at a time when internet use worldwide was just beginning to take off, the South Korean government hoped to encourage its citizens to shop online.  Security became a concern, and to try and promote some semblance of safety and uniformity, the National Assembly required everyone to use Internet Explorer.

Now that Internet Explorer is by some accounts actually the least secure browser to use, lawmakers in the National Assembly have proposed legislation to repeal the previous law.  The Washington Post illustrates one reason of Internet Explorer has deleterious effects on South Koreans by noting that:
“In current versions of Internet Explorer, Web surfers must approve the use of ActiveX by clicking ‘Yes’ to a question asking whether to proceed. This gives users the chance to avoid accessing or passing along untrusted material. But South Koreans are so accustomed to saying ‘yes’ that they sometimes mistakenly download malicious software.” 
The reasons why Internet Explorer is the most insecure browser are numerous, but perhaps the biggest reason is that it is still one of the most commonly-used browser in the world - therefore, it is a prime target for viruses and malicious software. 

Read the full article in the Washington Post here: South Korea is Stuck with Internet Explorer for Online Shopping because of Security Laws.

by Daniel Gardner
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Sean Hayes may be contacted at: SeanHayes@ipglegal.com.

Sean Hayes is co-chair of the Korea Practice Team and Entertainment, Media and New Tech Law Team at IPG Legal. He is the first non-Korean attorney to have worked for the Korean court system (Constitutional Court of Korea) and one of the first non-Koreans to be a regular member of a Korean law faculty.

He assists clients in their contentious, non-contentious and business developments needs in Korea and China. 

Nov 12, 2013

Samsung to Debut Online Drama Series

Following on from Netflix's success with "House of Cards," Samsung is launching a web-based drama series to capitalize on the rapid rise of smartphone connectivity in South Korea.

Entitled "Infinite Power," the six episode series is adapted from a popular internet cartoon focusing on the struggles of today's college graduates in the ultra-competitive job market in Seoul.

Singer Im Seul-ong plays the main character who chases the dream of working at a major corporation.

While previous web-based series have failed to produce a domestic hit, Samsung and the series producers predict this could be become a mainstream distribution model over the next five years.  The company is relying on it audience interactions through social media.

by Daniel Gardner

_____
SeanHayes@ipglegal.com

IPG is engaged in projects for companies and entrepreneurs doing business in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Vietnam and the U.S.

www.ipglegal.com

North Korea Executes 80 people for Watching Foreign TV Shows

Earlier this month, it has been reported that North Korea executed around 80 citizens for watching smuggled South Korean television shows.  The executions were carried out in seven cities around North Korea.

In one gathering, 10,000 people watched eight people executed by firing squad inside a sports stadium in the Eastern port of Woosan.

Watching foreign television or films from the US or South Korea is considered to be a capital crime in North Korea, punishable, often, by death.

As well South Korean soap operas, also, it seems Desperate Housewives, also, has a large following in North Korea.

Efforts by the North Korean regime to control the distribution of foreign content has been thwarted by an increase in the number of flash drives and portable media devices smuggled into the North.

By Daniel Gardner

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SeanHayes@ipglegal.com

IPG is engaged in projects for companies and entrepreneurs doing business in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Vietnam and the U.S.

www.ipglegal.com

The Korean War in Full Tom Coyner Color

There has been a great deal of activity commemorating the 60th anniversary of the Korean War armistice, but there has been little review of the events that made up the second half of that war.

One may recall the basics: war begins in June 1950, UN responds in July, fighting around the Pusan Perimeter until August, Incheon landing and retaking of Seoul in September, UN forces capture North Korea, Chinese forces push back UN forces from October through December and fighting occurs around the 38th parallel during the first half of 1951. Then details seem to disappear during the two-year stalemate from July 1951, followed by the armistice negotiations with continued fighting until July 1953.

In other words, after the Allied Forces retook Seoul a second time in March 1951, there is little mention, other than the casualties and a few battles. So, what really happened during those ensuing two and a half years?

According to Kathryn Weathersby, a Johns Hopkins historian who did research in Moscow when the Soviet archives were temporarily opened to scholars, Joseph Stalin cynically prolonged the 1950-53 Korean War. At the time, the Americans and their allies did not realize they had stepped into Stalin’s trap set to keep them bogged down in Korea for two and a half years.

Militarily, Stalin was very insecure. He welcomed the United States getting sucked into an Asian land war rather than seeing the Americans once more contest his machinations in other parts of the world. He had already suffered a setback in the Greek Civil War (1946-49) when the United States and the United Kingdom helped defeat the Greek Communists and their allies. Yugoslavia’s Tito already had broken away from Stalin’s command and the United States forced him to withdraw his demand to station Soviet military forces in the Turkish Straits. The Soviet dictator worried the United States would further challenge his attempts to expand the area under Moscow’s control.

Until Stalin’s death, the global Communist movement, apart from Tito, pretty much followed Moscow. Stalin ordered all Communist leaders to support prolonging the Korean War. He wanted time when the United States would not be able to challenge weak Communist regimes and movements. This gave Communist states the opportunity to arm themselves against presumed future conflicts with the West, including a possible third world war.

Furthermore, there was a chain of command in carrying out the war in Korea, starting with Stalin then down one notch to Mao Tse-tung and finally to Kim Il-sung. As a result, all political - and many military - decisions originated or were approved by Stalin. Even Mao accepted this chain of command as long as Stalin was alive during the early years of the People’s Republic of China, founded in 1949.

Consequently, by July 1952, when it became obvious that military victory was not possible, Kim appealed to his Communist bosses to end the war. North Koreans were experiencing needless widespread damage and human suffering from constant U.S. bombing.

Being the least powerful in command, Kim found he was routinely disregarded, with major decisions being made by Stalin and Mao with Kim, at best, being advised and sometimes even ignored. Hiding this humiliation, even before the war’s end, the North Korean propaganda machine began proclaiming that they alone had essentially beaten back the Americans.

Sometimes, however, the Russians would censure these proclamations by insisting that Pyongyang recognize the sacrifices made by the Chinese and the contributions of other socialist nations.

Nonetheless, North Korea’s distortion of the war’s history can be traced back to this national humiliation.

The Americans, not fully understanding what was happening on the other side of the war, became increasingly frustrated by the Communists’ refusal to agree to an armistice. They could no longer move the battle lines northward. The United States used its largely uncontested Air Force to repeatedly bomb the North in hopes of forcing their enemies to come to an agreement. Instead, Stalin pursued the war for an extra two and a half years at considerable cost to the North Koreans. During this time, the United States eventually bombed 85 percent of all buildings in the North. But for the Soviets and Chinese, this was a relatively painless price to pay for keeping the United States preoccupied and away from other sensitive parts of the world.

Actually, the Chinese benefitted during this time. To protect the logistically essential Yalu River bridges, Stalin assigned Russian pilots to fly North Korea-marked jets and successfully fight off the Americans in the northernmost part of North Korea. The Soviet pilots were based in Siberia and Manchuria. The Russian group transferred technology and know-how to the Chinese, who had not yet developed a modern air force. So while almost twice as many Chinese soldiers died than North Korean comrades, the war gave the Chinese the foundation for an air force of their own - something that became even more valuable in the 1950s when China broke away from the USSR following Stalin’s death.

After Stalin died in March 1953, the Communist side finally agreed to an armistice. Yet the North Koreans resented the armistice, since it left the country divided. Furthermore, the North Koreans resented the Russians and the Chinese for prolonging the war by sacrificing the Korean people. Since then, North Koreans have believed that the rest of the world owes their country ongoing reparations. Even today, they often regard foreign aid as reparations.

* The author is president of Soft Landing Consulting, a sales-focused business development firm, and senior adviser to the IPG Legal.  The article appeared in the Korea Joongang Daily.


_____
SeanHayes@ipglegal.com

IPG is engaged in projects for companies and entrepreneurs doing business in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Vietnam and the U.S.

www.ipglegal.com

Nov 7, 2013

Bo Xi Lai's Conviction Upheld: Life Sentence Still Stands

ABC News, and almost every other international news agency, has recently reported that former Chinese Communist Party Politburo member Bo Xi Lai has recently lost the appeal of his corruption conviction.  As a result, his life sentence stands.

Most commentators, IPG Legal included, seem to agree that the charges brought against Mr. Bo were politically-motivated and the entire legal system in China, particularly as it relates to cases that may seriously affect China’s political or economic system, is still in large part controlled by the Chinese Communist Party.

I have myself observed a Chinese criminal court try and convict a man who had no access to a lawyer.  The case involved a large company suing a private businessman for fraud.  Before issuing her final ruling on the case, the judge went into a backroom where she consulted with Communist Party officials on how the case should be concluded.  Unsurprisingly, the man was convicted, and even more unsurprisingly, the judge was quite frank about what she was doing in the backroom.

This was just one guy defrauding a mid-tier business... so, we can imagine what must be happening behind the scenes when something actually important comes along.

IPG Legal will keep you updated with more news about the case as it happens.  We don’t think we’ve seen the last of Mr. Bo just yet.

To learn more about the case and read the article from ABC News see:
China Court Upholds Bo Xi Lai Conviction, Life Term.

_____
SeanHayes@ipglegal.com

IPG is engaged in projects for companies and entrepreneurs doing business in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Vietnam and the U.S.

www.ipglegal.com

Asian Legal News for the Week of November 03, 2013

This Week's Asian Legal News Reported by Media

Most Recent Posts from The Asian Law Blog

_____
SeanHayes@ipglegal.com

IPG is engaged in projects for companies and entrepreneurs doing business in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Vietnam and the U.S.

www.ipglegal.com

Nov 6, 2013

Should UPP be Banned in Korea? Korea Government Files to Court to deregister Pro-North Party

The Park Administration as filed to the Constitutional Court of Korea a complaint to disband the leftist UPP.  The petition claims that the party engaged in pro-North Korea activities.  The case, also, calls for the immediate suspension of six of the lawmakers of the party.

Justice Minister Hwang Kyo-ahn noted to the press that:
"We have determined that the UPP’s platform and its objectives are intended to favor North Korean socialism, which goes against the free democratic basic order of our Constitution and that the activities of the RO (Revolutionary Organization) which forms the party’s core, were in line with North Korea’s strategy to revolutionize the South."  

This is not mere politics.  Evidence exists, including tape recordings, that establish that a leader of the UPP called on members to prepare for a war to assist North Korea in overthrowing North Korea.

At least six of the nine justices at the Constitutional Court must vote to disband the party for the party to be banned.

What do you think?
_________
Sean Hayes may be contacted at: SeanHayes@ipglegal.com.

Sean Hayes is co-chair of the Korea Practice Team and Entertainment, Media and New Tech Law Team at IPG Legal. He is the first non-Korean attorney to have worked for the Korean court system (Constitutional Court of Korea) and one of the first non-Koreans to be a regular member of a Korean law faculty. He assists clients in their contentious, non-contentious and business developments needs in Korea and China.

Nov 5, 2013

Garnishing Pay in Korea: Collections in Korea

Garnishing Wages in Korea

I received a call from a friend asking about information concerning collecting on a large debt. He loaned money to a “friend” and the friend never made a payment on the loan. Word to the wise, don't make large loans to friends----cry poverty instead.

In Korea, after a judgment or order to pay by a court, a plaintiff can collect on an unpaid debt through garnishing of wages. Garnishing of wages is normally the best way to guarantee the collection of debt when a debtor doesn’t have real or personal property. Most law firms can perform the service for a modest fee.
  • Less than W1.2mil (No wages can be garnished)
  • W1.2mil - W2.4mil (Monthly Wage – W1.2mil)
  • W2.4mil –W6mil (1/2 Monthly Wage)
  • Over W6mil (Half monthly Wage minus W3mil divided by two plus W3million minus monthly wage)
Examples:
1. W2,000,000 Monthly Pay (Can garnish monthly W800,000)
2. W3,000,000 Monthly (Can garnish monthly W1,500,000)
3. W5,000,000 Monthly Pay (Can garnish W2,500,000)
4. W6,000,000 Monthly Pay(Can garnish W3,000,000)
5. W12,000,000 Monthly Pay (Can garnish W7.500,000)
6. W20,000,000 Monthly Pay (Can garnish W13,500,000)

_____
SeanHayes@ipglegal.com

IPG is engaged in projects for companies and entrepreneurs doing business in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Vietnam and the U.S.

www.ipglegal.com

Second-Screen Legal Issues Addressed by Attorney Sean Hayes at MIPCOM in Cannes, France

The following article appears in MIPCOM. MIPCOM's website may be found here.

Primary Issues for Second Screen
"The Second-screen format that enables viewers to interact with TV content via social media could be opening up a tangle of legal issues, concluded speakers at Second Screen - Legal Issues and Solutions. Organized by the International Association of Entertainment Lawyers, the speakers noted that viewers' ability to access extra TV-related content on smartphones and tablets posed new legal challenges for broadcasters and advertisers hoping to monetize the experience. 

For example, second-screen apps with digital-fingerprint and automated content-recognition (ACR) technologies are able to track viewing behavior via data collected during a show. 

"But who owns your digital fingerprints or the collection of these fingerprints?" Asked Christiaan Alberdingk Thijm, Dutch attorney-at-law at bureau Brandeis. "The collection of fingerprints forms a database. But while the European Union recognizes database rights, the US does not. The second screen is a lawyer's paradise." 

The other speakers, Dr. Ralph Oliver Graef, attorney-at-law at Germany's Graef Rechtsanwalte, IPG Legal's senior partner, Sean Hayes, and moderator Jeff Liebenson, principal at US-based Liebenson Law, noted that copyright infringement, privacy violation and advertisement-skipping could be negative by-products of this new era of second-screen TV viewing."
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info@ipglegal.com

Applying for a D-8 Investment Visa in Korea: The Basics

We often receive requests for information from potential clients overseas that want to open a business or office in Korea.  The potential clients are often lost, don't know where to start, and have very generalized questions about what they should do.  We often begin by helping to counsel these potential clients regarding which visa they'll be applying for to get things moving.

We often advise that one of the more common visas to apply for is the D-8 investment visa.  It's also possible to open a business on some of the "F long-term stay" visas, however, most will not qualify without significant time in Korea or family in Korea.

Thus, for most people who are new to the peninsula, the D-8 investment visa is usually the way to go.  Here is a basic list of requirements for an applicant investing not less than KRW 100,000,000:
  • Application for a visa (or Confirmation letter of visa issuance).
  • Passport (or a photocopy of a passport in the case of applications for a Confirmation letter of visa issuance).
  • Photocopy of a certificate of FDI company registration. 
  • Photocopy of a business registration certificate or incorporation register, if applicable.
  • Certificate of declaration of a foreign currency (issued by the Customs Office).
  • Certificate of remittance issued by the relevant bank (Minimum of KRW 100,000,000).
  • Photocopy of foreign currency purchase certificate. 
  • Photocopy of office lease contract. 
  • Photocopy of bank book. 
  • Business Plan

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Sean Hayes may be contacted at: SeanHayes@ipglegal.com.

Sean Hayes is co-chair of the Korea Practice Team and Entertainment, Media and New Tech Law Team at IPG Legal. He is the first non-Korean attorney to have worked for the Korean court system (Constitutional Court of Korea) and one of the first non-Koreans to be a regular member of a Korean law faculty.

He assists clients in their contentious, non-contentious and business developments needs in Korea and China. 

Leading Attorneys in Korea: Sean Hayes One of Only Two Non-Koreans on List of Top Lawyers in South Korea

We are proud to announce that Sean Hayes has recently been listed by Asia Law as one of the top  attorneys working in South Korea.

Leading Lawyers/Law Firms in Korea by AsiaLaw.
  • Sean Hayes, IPG Legal                                    
  • Yong Seok Ahn, Lee & Ko
  • Heejae Ahn, Yoon & Yang LLC              
  • Jay Ahn, Kim & Chang
  • Henry An, Samil PricewatersCoopers             
  • Woo Hyun Baik, Kim & Chang
  • Chad Chang Hoon Lee, Muhann Patent & Law Firm             
  • Yong-Jae Chang, Lee & Ko
  • Tae Yeon Cho, Cho & Partners                
  • Young Joon Cho, Bae Kim & Lee
  • Young Sun Cho, Yoon & Yang LLC
  • J H Choi, Choi & Kim
  • Jae Seong Choi, Barun Law
  • Kyung Joon Choi, Kim Chang & Lee
  • Woo Young Choi, Hwang Mok Park
  • Hyunseok Choi, You Me Patent & Law Firm
  • Won-Hyun Choi, Kim Choi & Lim
  • Won Sik Choo, Lee & Ko
  • Eui Jong Chung, Bae Kim & Lee
  • Kye Sung Chung, Kim & Chang
  • Myung Jae Chung, Kim & Chang
  • Byung-Suk Chung, Kim & Chang
  • Sung Jun Hong, Bae Kim & Lee
  • Ick Ryol Huh, Kim & Chang
  • Young Man Huh, Kim &  Chang
  • Chan Ik Jang, Lee & Ko 
  • Joo Hyoung, Jang Barun Law 
  • Young Hee Jo, Shin & Kim 
  • Kyung Taek Jung, Kim & Chang 
  • Woo Young Jung, Lee & Ko 
  • Youngjin Jung, Kim & Chang 
  • Hee Jeu Kang, Lee & Ko 
  • Myung-Koo Kang, Kim and Cho 
  • Seong Kang, Sehan LLC 
  • Sin-seob Kang, Shin & Kim 
  • Eric Kee Wan, Koo Muhann Patent & Law Firm 
  • David H J Kim, You Me Patent & Law Firm 
  • C J Kim, Choi & Kim 
  • Doo Sik Kim, Shin & Kim 
  • Hyoung Don Kim, Bae Kim & Lee 
  • In Man Kim, Bae Kim & Lee 
  • Jae Hoon Kim, Lee & Ko 
  • Jae Young Kim, Yoon & Yang LLC 
  • Kap-You (Kevin) Kim, Bae Kim & Lee 
  • Kim Sang Man, Shin & Kim 
  • Kwon Hoe Kim, Yoon & Yang LLC 
  • Sang Gon Kim, Lee & Ko 
  • Soo Chang Kim, Kim Chang & Lee 
  • Weon Jung Kim, Kim & Chang 
  • Woo Taik Kim, Kim & Chang 
  • Yeon Song Kim, Kim & Chang 
  • Beomsu Kim, Shin & Kim 
  • Jong-Yoon Kim, Shinsegi Patent Law Firm 
  • Wonil Kim, Yoon & Yang LLC 
  • Young-Chol Kim, Kim Choi & Lim 
  • Chang Hyeon Ko, Kim & Chang 
  • Hyun Soo Kwak, Lee & Ko 
  • Sukheum Kwon, You Me Patent & Law Firm 
  • Young-Mo Kwon, Lee & Ko 
  • Lee Kyung Don, Shin & Kim 
  • David Jin-Young, Lee Samil PricewaterhouseCoopers 
  • Hyeong Gun Lee, Lee & Ko 
  • Je Won Lee, Lee & Ko 
  • Jeong Han Lee, Bae Kim & Lee 
  • Kyu Wha Lee, Lee & Ko 
  • Sang Hoon Lee, Lee & Ko 
  • Mee-Hyon Lee, Lee & Ko 
  • Youngpil Lee, Y P Lee Mock & Partners 
  • Sean Lim Sung, Woo Lee & Ko 
  • Seung Soon Lim, Yoon & Yang LLC 
  • Ho-Hyun Nahm, Barun Law 
  • Keum Seok Oh, Bae Kim & Lee 
  • Hyunjoo Oh, Lee & Ko
  • Il-Hwan Oh, Samil PricewaterhouseCoopers 
  • Yon Kyun Oh, Kim & Chang 
  • Man-Gi Paik, Kim & Chang 
  • Jang Won Park, Park Kim & Partner 
  • Jong Koo Park, Kim & Chang 
  • Kwang Bae Park, Lee & Ko 
  • Sang Hoon Park, Yoon & Yang LLC 
  • Sang Il Park, Hwang Mok Park 
  • Soo Man Park, Kim & Chang 
  • Ghyo-Sun Park, Shin & Kim 
  • Seung-Moon Park, Darae Law & Patent 
  • Thomas Pinansky, Barun Law 
  • Paul S Rhee, Yoon & Yang LLC 
  • Dong Woo Seo, Bae Kim & Lee 
  • Ik Hyun Seo, Cho & Partners 
  • Tom Shin, Lee & Ko 
  • Young-Moo Shin, Shin & Kim 
  • Manho Song, You Me Patent & Law Firm 
  • Woong Soon Song, Shin & Kim 
  • Han Wonkyu, Lee & Ko 
  • Chun Y Yang, Kim & Chang 
  • Jay Young-June, Yang Kim & Chang 
  • Dong-Jun Yeo, Kim & Chang 
  • Suk-Jae Yim, Wonjon 
  • Jiyul Yoo, Yoon & Yang LLC 
  • Byung Chol Yoon, Kim & Chang 
  • Yong Suk Yoon, Lee & Ko 
  • Hoil Yoon, Yoon & Yang LLC 
  • Seong Un Yun, Bae Kim & Lee 
  • Sinsung Yun, Yoon & Yang LLC 

You can check out the listings here: Asia Law Profiles: South Korea
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info@ipglegal.com

Nov 4, 2013

KoreaBANG Takes on a Scandal at the JRTI

Our friends at KoreaBANG have posted an interesting article regarding a recent adultery scandal and suicide at Korea's Judicial Research and Training Institute.  The site was founded by the same people that created ChinaSmack.  I can't say all of the information on the site is unbiased, however, it is interesting. 

Take a look here:
Adultery Scandal at Korea's Elite Law School Ends in Suicide

____
SeanHayes@ipglegal.com

IPG is engaged in projects for companies and entrepreneurs doing business in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Vietnam and the U.S.

www.ipglegal.com