O’Melveny & Myers applies for license to practice in South Korea
O'Melveny & Myers has announced plans to apply for permission to launch a practice in South Korea after the hire of US qualified of counsel Sungyong Kang and Jinwon Park in Hong Kong.
Kang was recently a partner at Korean law firm Shin & Kim, and Park was an adviser at South Korean engineering consulting company Idea Consultants.
The firm has begun the license application process alongside several other major law firms, including Ropes & Gray, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, Paul Hastings, Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton, McDermott Will & Emery, Clifford Chance, and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett.
These firms are taking advantage of new rules under free trade agreements concluded between South Korea and the US and UK, which permit the granting of licenses for foreign law firms to practice international law and the law of their home countries. In 20127 foreign firms will be allowed to merge with South Korean law firms and hire local lawyers.