“I am an adoptee from South Korea to the U.S. Currently I live in the U.S. Recently I found my biological parents died in South Korea. He is survived by his wife and 2 sons. He had businesses in Korea. Can an adopted child inherit from biological parents in Korea? I have never met or spoken to his wife and sons and so I don’t know if he had a will written. What are my inheritance rights under Korean law?”
Everything Boils Down to Whether it is Full Adoption or Simple Adoption
A legal child is entitled to inheritance from his/her deceased parent. When the child is adopted, some jurisdictions treat the adoption as disconnecting the legal relationship with the biological parent, and some jurisdictions don’t. We call the former as a full adoption and the latter as a simple adoption.
As you can understand from the general idea of inheritance, an adopted child can inherit from biological parents in Korea only when the adoption is regarded as (more…)
Can Korean Police Issue a Summon Even When the Suspect Resides Abroad?
For a starter, there may be a question about whether the Korean police can summon a foreigner who resides abroad. The answer is yes. The Korean criminal law applies to those who have committed crimes within Korea and then gone abroad, as well as those who have committed crimes against Koreans while staying outside of Korea. Thus, a foreign resident could be sued and accused by the Korean police, and in such case, the Korean police moves to demand the foreign suspect to attend the investigation in Korea. Recently, our office sees many cases where a foreign resident employee of a foreign company is called in by the Korean police in relation with its Korean subsidiary’s business.
Do I have to comply with the summon?
Since a foreign country is not within the domain of Korea’s criminal jurisdiction, it is not mandatory for the foreign resident suspect to comply with the summon. However, if the foreign resident suspect refuses to comply with, the Korean law enforcement authority can get an arrest warranty, which could put the suspect at risk of being arrested upon entering Korea. (more…)
Divorce could be one of the hardest decisions that people make during their entire life. If people decide to divorce, one question they might ask their Korean divorce lawyer is how long it will take to get the divorce decree from the Korean Family Court. Fast divorce in Korea is what you might aim for, once you decided to divorce.
The short answer to this question is that it depends, the magic phrase that the lawyers would love to use in almost every dialogue. The thing is, however, that it really depends on various factors, especially what types of divorce they are going through. It could be a contested divorce or an uncontested divorce, which requires a totally different approach and care.
If it is an uncontested divorce which means the parties have been able to agree about all the issues involved in a divorce such as custody, child support, visitation, property division, and consolation money, the divorce decree can be obtained within 1 to 2 months. That is pretty fast compared to other countries. The parties don’t need to appear at the court so long as a Korean divorce attorney takes care of the case. That is how our office in Seoul has been handling uncontested divorce cases.
If the divorce is contested, it requires more time for the Korean Family Court to render a divorce decree. It should go through several hearings and extensive arguments between the parties. (more…)
Unlike situations in some states in the U.S., a prenuptial agreement is somewhat in a grey area in the Korean legal system.
When the case later goes into a divorce by agreement, the prenup will be fully honored by the court. It is legal and enforceable in Korea.
When the case, however, goes to a judicial divorce or a contested divorce, the Korean court applies a more strict standard in honoring the validity and application scope of the prenuptial agreement, which in many cases results in nullifying the prenuptial agreement.
We would not say having a prenuptial agreement is meaningless. On the contrary, having a prenuptial agreement is better than having no such agreement. Even in case of a judicial divorce or a contested divorce, the existence of a prenuptial agreement could work for your advantage. Although the court is not bound by the prenuptial agreement, it takes account of the prenuptial agreement when deciding which property is included in the subject of property division, i.e. marital assets.
Read More: Getting Divorced in Korea as Foreigners: The Ultimate Guide
If you have any questions regarding this article or you are in a similar case/situation, please visit our Legal Consultation center or send your inquiry email by clicking here. Our Korean qualified lawyer will answer your inquiry.
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(Question) I have a question regarding my current situation with my ex-husband. He is a Korean national and working there in South Korea. I lived there until 2014 when I came back to Washington and filed a divorce complaint here. Since then he has refused to speak with me. This year my US lawyer duly served him with the paper but he just kept ignoring it. At any rate, I got a divorce decree and child support ruling for my baby this April. Now I am wondering how I can enforce my US ruling in Korea, knowing that he is living a luxurious life and feels that he can just ignore his child and the responsibilities that come with it.
(Answer) I have to say that there is something unclear in this case. If the court proceedings in Washington(WA) court have been duly made, i.e. (i) the WA court had proper jurisdiction and (ii) he was duly served, you can apply for its execution in Korea. Otherwise, you may initiate the whole process de nuvo in Korea. The second threshold seems to have been met here. Thus, the real issue here rather is the first one.
Please note that the jurisdiction must be acknowledged in the view of Korean law, not the WA law. Thus, even though the WA ruling says the WA court has proper jurisdiction, the Korean court will (more…)