Korean Law Demystified!

‘Loser Pays’ Rule for Attorneys’ Fees is Constitutional (in Korea)!


The Constitutional Court of Korea recently ruled as such. In Korean litigation, the loser is required to reimburse the winner’s legal expenses.


Article 98 (Principle of Bearing Costs of Lawsuit)

Costs of a lawsuit shall be borne by the losing party.

Article 101 (Case of Partial Defeat)

The costs of lawsuit to be borne by the parties in cases of a partial defeat shall be determined by the court: depending on circumstances, the court may charge either of the parties with the whole of the costs.

– Translation by KLRI (Korea Legislation Research Institute)

Of course, the loser is required to reimburse only up to a certain amount (depending on the “amount in controversy”). Please see table at the top.

For example: If the plaintiff sought 500 mil won in damages (and won), the maximum he/she can be reimbursed is 9.8 mil won.

6.8 mil won  +  (500 mil won – 200 mil won)  x  1/100  =  9.8 mil won

Of course, if the plaintiff spent less than 9.8 mil won, then that’s (only) what he/she is entitled to. Thanks for reading!

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