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"Extremely professional and stellar expertise."
– IFLR1000 (2019)


Kim & Chang is widely recognized as having the most sophisticated and client-service oriented banking practice in Korea.  The Banking Practice at Kim & Chang represents a broad range of domestic and foreign banks and other financial institutions doing business or interested in doing business in Korea.  The Practice has over 100 skilled lawyers and experts who are dedicated in providing legal and regulatory services required in all aspects of the banking business, including the establishment of a new banking entity, M&A, and regulatory reporting and audits.

The Banking Practice delivers comprehensive legal and regulatory advice in connection with all aspects of the banking business, including transactions, restructurings, litigation and alternative disputes, compliance and audit-related matters, day-to-day operational matters, anti-trust issues, corporate governance, restructurings, as well as corporate expansion and down-sizing.  The diversity and versatility of its professionals allow the Banking Practice to provide tailored services to not only large established institutions, but also small emerging banking institutions.  

The unique combination of experienced Korean attorneys and foreign attorneys with experiences at major international law firms and global financial institutions and former government and regulatory agency officials distinguishes Kim & Chang’s banking and financial regulatory practice from other firms in Korea. 

The Banking Practice provides insightful and reliable up-to-date regulatory advice to clients, and its highly qualified attorneys and professionals have been involved in virtually all precedent-setting transactions and regulatory matters for a broad range of international and domestic financial institutions. 

The Banking Practice has been consistently recognized in Korea and throughout Asia as the best in its practice area.  Numerous surveys have regularly ranked the Banking Practice highly and the following lists some of recent recognitions: 

  • Top-tier in Banking & Finance - Asia Pacific Legal 500
  • Top-tier in Banking & Project Finance - IFLR 1000 
  • Top-tier in Banking & Finance - Asialaw Profiles
  • Top-tier in Banking & Finance - Chambers Global
  • Top-tier in Banking & Finance - Chambers Asia-Pacific

Key Servicesshow

Establishment of Banking Entities

The Banking Practice has assisted most major global banks in establishing, registering, licensing, reorganizing, closing, planning strategies, and conducting day-to-day operations of their subsidiaries, branches, joint ventures, affiliates, and representative offices in Korea.  The Banking Practice has also actively advised various local and foreign banks in relation to forming financial holding companies and reorganizing their structures under the Financial Holding Companies Act.

Legal and Regulatory Advice

The banking industry is one of the most highly regulated industries in Korea requiring compliance with various laws and regulations.  The Banking Practice has unsurpassed expertise and experience in advising on legal, regulatory and compliance matters related to the banking business, including audits and investigations by various regulatory authorities such as the Ministry of Strategy and Finance, the Financial Services Commission, the Financial Supervisory Service and the Bank of Korea.  


The Banking Practice is a renowned leader in mergers and acquisitions, restructuring, project financing, international financing, trade financing, structured financing, foreign exchange transactions, derivatives transactions, securitization, loans, deposits, trusts, customer privacy, business outsourcing, and other major activities involving various banks and banking institutions in Korea.  The Banking Practice regularly assists clients in designing, structuring, introducing and updating cutting-edge financial products in Korea.  

Litigation and Dispute Resolution

Kim & Chang is well-renowned for our extensive experience representing financial institutions in all types of disputes brought in every possible forum, including not just the traditional court system but also alternative dispute resolution (e.g., arbitration, mediation, etc.) and administrative appeals as well.  With a comprehensive understanding of business trends in the finance industry and industry knowledge and insight into client businesses, the Banking Practice collaborates with the firm’s Litigation Department and Arbitration Team to navigate financial institutions through the complex disputes following the recent global financial crisis.   

Other Matters

The Banking Practice works closely with the other practices within the firm to offer advice on securities, asset management, private equity funds, insurance, bankruptcy and insolvency, tax, anti-trust, human resources, labor, employment, real estate, and other legal matters important to banks and other financial institutions operating in Korea.  This seamlessly integrated coordinated well-rounded approach permits the Banking Practice to offer the most comprehensive and effective legal services to its clients in Korea’s dynamic market.

Key Experiencesshow

Advice relating to Policy and Legal Analysis
  • Participated in Task Forces with various government agencies formed to cover the amendment of relevant laws
  • Assisted clients apply for no-action letters and regulatory rulings
  • Participated in establishing regulations for OTC derivatives CCP
  • Rehypothecation of KTB (Korea Treasury Bond)
  • Assisted clients in the establishment of internet banks in Korea
  • Represented banks in covered bond issuances
  • Conducted check of anti-money laundering law compliance
Establishment of Banks and Financial Holding Companies
  • Advised on the establishment of Standard Chartered Korea
  • Advised on the establishment of Citigroup Korea
  • Advised on the establishment of KB Financial Group
  • Advised on the establishment of Shinhan Financial Group
  • Advised on the establishment of JB Financial Group
  • Advised on the establishment of NongHyup Financial Group
  • Advised on the conversion of Daegu Bank into a financial holding company
  • Advised on the establishment of BS Financial Group and relevant license issues (comprehensive stock transfer)
  • Advised on the establishment of KDB Financial Group through stock split and stock swap of Korea Development Bank
  • Advised on the establishment of K Bank, one of the first Internet banks in Korea
M&A of Financial Institutions
  • KDIC (Korea Deposit Insurance Corporation)’s sale of Woori Bank
  • KB Financial Group’s acquisition of LIG Insurance
  • Closure of part of domestic business units of a foreign bank
  • Korea Development Bank’s acquisition of KDB Financial Group and Korea Finance Corporation
  • Hana Financial Group’s equity acquisition of Korea Exchange Bank
  • KB Financial Group’s P&A acquisition of Jeil Savings Bank
  • DBG Financial Group’s 100% equity acquisition of Metro Asia Capital
  • MBK Partner’s tender offer of HK Savings Bank shares
  • KB Financial Group’s acquisition of Hyundai Securities
  • Yuanta Commercial Bank’s acquisition of Hanshin Savings Bank
Licensing under Capital Markets Act
  • OTC derivatives investment trading business license for the Seoul branch of OCBC
  • KTB (Korea Treasury Bond)/MSB (Monetary Stabilization Bond) investment trading business license for the Seoul branch of Goldman Sachs International Bank
  • KTB trading license for Societe Generale’s Seoul branch
  • Investment trading license for treasury securities and non-equity based OTC derivatives for ING Bank’s Seoul branch
  • Investment brokerage license for non-equity based OTC derivatives for Credit Suisse’s Seoul branch
Bank Litigations
  • Represented multiple banks in foreign currency hedging product (KIKO) related litigations and kun-mortgage expenses litigations
  • KB Kookmin Bank’s litigation over corporate income tax return
Establishment of Korean Branch or Office by Foreign Financial Institutions
  • Bank of Communications’ Seoul branch
  • Morgan Stanley Bank International Ltd.’s Seoul branch
  • Goldman Sachs International Bank’s Seoul branch
  • Landesbank Baden-Württemberg’s Seoul branch
  • Royal Bank of Scotland’s Seoul branch
  • Macquarie Bank Limited’s Seoul branch
  • BBVA Bank’s Seoul branch
  • BDO Unibank’s Seoul representative office
  • Northern Trust Company’s Seoul representative office
  • China Everbright Bank’s Seoul branch


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