We recently had a client with a myriad of joint venture issues. The issues were caused, primarily, because of the joint venture agreement being drafted, only, in English without a review my client or a competent lawyer and most of the negotiations occuring through a translator.
For example, the American company believed that the joint venture agreement mandated that all disputes were to be handled via arbitration in Hong Kong. The American company SEVP noted this to the interpreter as non-negotiable. The agreement was drafted in Korean and the American SEVP never reviewed the joint venture agreement in anything but the Korean language.
Oddly enough, the law firm drafting the agreement never even mentioned this to the American Company.
Because of this issue the SEVP and the in house attorney that assisted on this deal were fired. The international law firm operating out of Hong Kong was, also, fired.
Please read a few of my posts on drafting joint venture agreements. Please, always, have, at a bare minimum, the governing language of your joint venture agreement English and, always, have an arbitration clause.
- Entering into a Joint Venture/ Partnership in Korea
- Bare Essential of a JVA in Korea
- Basic Agreements for Doing Business in Korea
- Due Diligence, Agreements and Attorneys: Doing Business in Korea
Sean Hayes may be contacted at: [email protected]
Sean Hayes is co-chair of the Korea Practice Team at IPG Legal. He is the only non-Korean to have worked as an attorney for the Korean court system (Constitutional Court of Korea) and one of the first non-Koreans to be a regular member of a Korean law faculty.
- Entering into a Joint Venture/Partnership in South Korea?
- So you Want to Start a Partnership/Joint Venture in Korea?
- Korean Distribution Agreements: So you Want to Work with a Korean Distributor
- So you want to do business in Korea? Listen to my Mother. Korean Joint Venture/Partnership Basics
- Korea Licensing Agreements: Licensing of Technology, Trademarks and other IP in Korea
- Building Systems Before JVs in Korea to Build Trust between Partners
- Credit Rating Agencies in Korea: Due Diligence of Your Supplier, Franchisee, Joint Venture Partner & Distributors
- Korea Due Diligence for Joint Ventures, Licensing, OEMs and Buying a Korean Company
- Distribution Agreement in Korea: Factors to Always Keep in Mind
- Contract Drafting in South Korea