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Real Estate

"Their market reputation is superb. Kim & Chang is sought after for complex and difficult deals."
– Chambers Asia-Pacific 2018

Overview

The Real Estate Practice has extensive experience in a wide range of real estate and construction transactions involving various types of real property such as prime office buildings, hotels and resorts, mixed-use retail properties, logistics facilities, factories, infrastructure properties, officetels and residential buildings.  

Based on such experience, our experts provide comprehensive legal advices on all types of real estate and construction matters such as investment structuring, tax planning, real estate investment vehicles, joint venture and financing.

Recognized as a market leader and having experience and capability “head and shoulders above the rest,” we are committed to supporting our clients’ business goals and strive to provide creative solutions to overcome legal challenges and disputes. 

Key Servicesshow

Investment and Transaction Structuring

We provide comprehensive legal services on various matters ranging from establishment to liquidation of the real estate investment vehicles including devising the optimal transaction structure and obtaining the relevant licenses and permits necessary for the establishment of real estate investment vehicles.  We have a track record of successfully closing transactions using various real estate investment structures including, but not limited to, trust-type and company-type real estate funds, real estate investment trust companies (REITs) and project finance vehicles.

 

Acquisition and Disposition

We advise our clients on the acquisition and disposition of all types of real property including, but not limited to, prime office buildings, hotels and resorts, retail stores, logistics facilities, factories and mixed-use buildings.  We timely provide our legal advice, by proactively identifying the issues and risks through due diligence and engaging in negotiation and execution of transaction documents, at every stage of the transaction, including acquisition financing, tax planning, investment vehicle establishment, obtaining regulatory approvals, and otherwise ensuring that the client’s objectives can be achieved.

 

Development

There has been an increase in the number of development projects involving commercial buildings, residential buildings, hotels and resorts and mixed-use buildings.  Given that development projects are subject to many different laws and regulations, it is important to review and understand the relevant issues early.  We provide comprehensive advice on matters related to development projects such as, among others, acquisition of land, review of zoning issues, regulatory matters as well as supply and disposition of buildings, construction works, financing and trust arrangement.

 

Overseas Investment

For our domestic clients investing overseas, we provide legal advice on all aspects of the transaction, from optimal investment structuring to understanding the legal, regulatory, and tax implications of the overseas investment.  We also work with local counsel to provide comprehensive advice on all aspects of the cross-border transaction, from due diligence, documentation, and financing to implementation of closing.

 

Regulatory and Environmental

We advise our clients on various regulatory issues related to real estate and construction projects, including identifying and applying for required regulatory approvals, permits, and licenses, and where ambiguities exist in the law, obtaining official rulings from governmental authorities to clarify such ambiguities.  In addition, we also provide legal advice on soil contamination, underground water contamination, and other real estate related environmental laws and regulations.

 

Construction and Engineering

We offer a full array of engineering, procurement and construction related legal advice, covering all stages of construction and engineering projects, both private and public, including project structuring, legal feasibility analysis, obtaining approvals and permits, contract administration and interpretation, bid documentation, concession contracts, construction contracts and subcontracts, and technology supply and license agreements.

 

Finance and Tax

Our Real Estate Practice works closely with the firm’s other practices, including the finance and tax practices, in order to promptly provide comprehensive one-stop service to our clients.  In order to ensure that our clients secure timely financing through financing documents, we actively support the drafting and negotiation of financing contracts and provide seamless and efficient inter-disciplinary services by identifying tax issues and providing optimal solutions for such tax issues.

 

Dispute Resolution

We are experienced in a wide variety of disputes involving real estate, including those arising in connection with the bankruptcy of real estate developers and owners, foreclosures, title disputes, attachments, environment proceedings, and construction related disputes.  When a dispute arises, members of our Real Estate & Construction Practice who have extensive experience with mediation, domestic and international arbitration, as well as traditional litigation, work closely with our Litigation Practice and International Arbitration & Cross-Border Litigation Practice to prevent disputes from developing into a full-blown litigation.  If litigation or arbitration does occur, we represent our clients, armed with both substantive knowledge of the real estate issues and extensive experience in litigation and arbitration.

 

Leasing

We advise on various issues related to the leasing of commercial buildings and other types of real property, including negotiation and execution of lease agreements, establishment of appropriate security interests for the return of lease deposits, verifying zoning restrictions applicable to leased premises, statutory protection of certain tenants, as well as standardized contract and fair trade law issues that may arise in a leasing transaction. 

Key Experiencesshow

We represent most of the largest and well-known developers, multinational corporations, investment banks, insurance companies, opportunity funds, private equity funds, foreign governments, pension funds, asset management companies and advisors, both domestic and foreign, operating in Korea.  Building on experience accumulated for decades and providing unparalleled legal service tailored to each client we represent, we are widely regarded as the preeminent leader in the real estate legal market and regularly play a prominent role in the real estate industry's most high-profile transactions.

 

Representative transactions that our Real Estate Practice has been involved with include:

 

  • Advised the National Pension Fund in its outbound investments, including its acquisition of a 49% interest in an iconic Manhattan building in New York, US and a prime office building located in Sydney, Australia.

  • Advised the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation in its various Korean investments, including the acquisition of the Seoul Finance Center, one of the most iconic office buildings in the Seoul Central Business District.

  • Advised a German-based investor in its acquisition of various office and retail properties using company-type collective investment vehicles, being the first in the industry to use such structure.

  • Advised various developers in connection with the International Business District development project in New Songdo City, Incheon Metropolitan City.

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