The reality is that the most important aspect of ensuring that you will not have a large employment liability is to:
- Adequately vet the anticipated hire. This does not, simply, mean having a call and meeting the person. A Korean “old hat” is, normally, necessary in flagging issues that, often, do not seem to be issues by those not, deeply, familiar with Korean employees and Korean realities;
- Don’t trust “salary tables.” In our opinion, they, are way too high for most employees;
- Don’t use foreign employment, distribution, agency, and consultant agreements. Typically, these will lead to issues in Korea – that lead to litigation;
- Don’t hire a headhunter when a headhunter is not necessary. The best way to hire is through the grape vine and foreign “old hat” consultants and lawyers are the best at finding appropriate individuals through the grapevine. If they fail – seek a headhunter. Many headhunters in Korea are interested in making the placement -not making the proper placement, because of the, often, lack of appropriate compensation for not making a placement. Additionally, foreign headhunters, often, are just outsourcing services to affiliated agencies with little oversight.
- Korea is not China or Japan. Realities in Korea, are, often, not realities in China and Japan.
Other articles on Korea’s Labor & Employment Law that may be of interest to the readers of the Korean Law Blog:
- Korean Rules of Employment Necessary
- Choice of Law Issues in Employment Disputes
- Restrictive Covenants in Korean Employment Agreements
- Korean Labor Law Check List for Employers in Korea
Sean Hayes may be contacted at: SeanHayes@ipglegal.com. Sean Hayes is co-chair of the Korea Practice Team at IPG Legal. He is the first non-Korean attorney to have worked 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. He is ranked, for Korea, as one of only two non-Korean attorneys as a Top Attorney by AsiaLaw.
- Hiring/Terminating an Employee/Contractor in Korea: Employment Law in Korea
- Employment Background Checks in Korea: Not so Different from China
- Korea Amends the Act on the Employment, etc. of Foreign Workers in 2019: Employment Law Updates
- Without a Korean Employment Contract, can you bring a Claim against your Korean Employer for Breach of Contract or Labor Law Violations?
- Must I grant Male Employees Maternity/Paternity Leave in Korea?: Korean Labor/Employment Law Updates
- Suspending Korean Workers without Pay due to Economic Fallout from the Coronavirus: Korean Employment Law Basics
- Terminate/Layoff an Employee in Korea: Terminating an Employee in Korea
- Choice of Law Issues in Employment Disputes in Korea
- Increased Scrutiny of Employers by Korean’s Ministry of Employment & Labor under President Moon’s Administration: HR Audit Needed by Korean Employment Lawyers
- Is a Non-Registered Company Director in Korea an Employee under Korean Labor Law