Help us enhance market access in South Korea

Let us know about any challenges your firm faces operating in South Korea ahead of UK-South Korea trade negotiations.

The UK government is currently preparing its strategy for trade negotiations with South Korea.

These negotiations look to build upon the UK-South Korea Free Trade Agreement (FTA) that was signed in 2019 and came into force in 2021.

The FTA was a continuation of the existing trade agreement between South Korea and the European Union.

We want to push for further liberalisation of South Korea’s legal market and address any challenges your firm might be experiencing.

We have responded to the government’s strategy consultation based on previous discussions with members in South Korea.

Our report outlines:

  • the areas in which UK law firms continue to face market access barriers
  • what outcomes the UK government should aim for in the negotiations


The liberalisation of South Korea’s legal services market through FTAs was set out in a three-phase approach.

However, South Korea has narrowly implemented its existing commitments and not properly addressed the issue of joint practice between Korean and foreign lawyers.

This means South Korea’s legal services market has yet to fully open.

Our main priorities

We are calling on the UK government to take this opportunity to negotiate for:

  • a fourth stage of liberalisation to remove existing barriers to market access and foster joint practice between UK and Korean lawyers
  • a more prescriptive FTA text that ensures timely and full implementation of South Korea’s existing commitments on market liberalisation
  • less challenging requirements for UK lawyers and law firms based in the country
  • greater fly-in fly-out rights for UK lawyers and the ability to provide services digitally

These recommendations are in line with the spirit and existing commitments of the original UK-South Korea FTA, as well as with the rights afforded to Korean lawyers practising in the UK.

How you can get involved

We would like to hear more from you about the issues your firm currently faces doing business in South Korea and the impact on your operations.

This will help us to further develop our position and recommendations ahead of ongoing discussions in the UK and South Korea.

Get in touch
To share your concerns, email our international policy adviser for North Asia and the Pacific, Will Miller.

Maximise your Law Society membership with My LS