Lawyer Admission Blockage in Korea

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Long title: 
Globalisation and South Korea's Market for Legal Services: Regulatory Blockages and Collateral Circulation
Author(s): 
Silver, Carole
Lee, Jea-Hyup
Park, Jeeyoon
Author(s)' contact information: 
Northwestern University, USA Seoul National University, South Korea Columbia University, USA
Conference title: 
International Legal Ethics Conference VI
Conference location: 
City University London
Country: 
South Korea (Republic of Korea)
USA
Year: 
2014

Lawyer admission rules typically are considered in light of their intended effect on legal education. But these rules also can have a profound impact on the career paths of would-be lawyers. Korea offers a rich case study of this phenomenon, illustrating the potential for regulatory blockages that effectively pushed aspiring lawyers out of the country to pursue their legal studies. Global law firms offered a return path for these individuals, who became licensed as lawyers outside of Korea and primarily in the United States. In this paper, we analyze the educational credentials and demographic information on lawyers working in five elite and globally-focused law firms in Korea to understand the effect of Korea’s earlier lawyer admission regime on career paths of the lawyers in its elite law firms.

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