What kind of requirements should a foreign lawyer fulfill to perform legal business in Japan?
In order to handle legal business concerning foreign laws in Japan, a lawyer qualified in a foreign country shall obtain approval from the Minister of Justice and be registered with the Japan Federation of Bar Associations(JFBA).
1. Minister of Justice may approve if the applicant satisfies the following requirements:
(1) He or she possesses the qualification to become a lawyer in a foreign country.
(2)He or she has the following experience of having engaged in practice for a period of three years or more in total.
(3) He or she does not come under any one of the categories of disqualification in the foreign country which correspond to the categories of disqualification for an Attorney at law in Japan.
(4) He or she has the will to perform his or her functions faithfully.
(5) He or she has the plan, dwelling house and financial basis for performing such functions properly and steadily.
(6) He or she has the ability to compensate for damages which he or she may cause to his or her clients.
The foreign country referred in (1), (2) above is the country where a person who is qualified to become a foreign lawyer registered in Japan can practically receive equivalent treatment as accorded by the "Special Measures Law Concerning the Handling of Legal Business by Foreign Lawyers" (reciprocity), or to which Japan has promised not to apply reciprocity in treaties or other international agreements.
2. A person who is qualified to become a foreign lawyer registered in Japan shall be required, for becoming a foreign lawyer registered in Japan , to obtain registration of his or her name, date of birth, nationality, name of the country of primary qualification, address in Japan, office, name of the bar association to which he or she belongs and other matters as are to be stipulated by the regulations of the Japan Federation of Bar Associations, in the Register of Foreign Lawyer Registered in Japan kept by the Japan Federation of Bar Associations.
3. A foreign lawyer registered in Japan may perform the legal business concerning the law of the country of primary qualification and the designated law.
If a foreign lawyer registered in Japan intends to employ an attorney at law or run a foreign law joint enterprise, he or she shall give notification in advance to the Japan Federation of Bar Associations of the matters listed below and other matters as stipulated by the Regulations of the Federation. In this case, the documents as stipulated by the Regulations of the Federation shall be attached to:
(1) Name and office of the attorney at law to be employed;
(2) Name or title and office of the attorney at law or legal professional corporation running the foreign law joint enterprise and the scope of the legal business to be performed by that enterprise.