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Thought Leaders

Thought Leaders

Kap-You (Kevin) Kim

Kap-You (Kevin) Kim

Peter & Kim#1704 Trade Tower, 511 Yeongdong-daeroGangnamSeoulKorea06164

Thought Leader

WWL Ranking: Global Elite Thought Leader
Thought Leaders - Arbitration 2020

Q&A

WWL Ranking: Thought Leader

WWL says

Kap-You (Kevin) Kim “is a key figure in the Korean arbitration market” who has built “a strong network of arbitrators and practitioners” and is widely considered “a statesman in the market”.

Questions & Answers

Kap-You (Kevin) Kim is a senior partner at Peter & Kim in Seoul, a dispute resolution practice with offices in Korea, Switzerland, Australia and Singapore. Over the past 30 years, he has acted as counsel, presiding arbitrator, co-arbitrator and sole arbitrator in more than 300 cases of international arbitration under various arbitration rules. Among other positions that he holds, Kevin is presently vice president of the ICC International Court of Arbitration.

What inspired you to pursue a legal career? 

I studied law at Seoul National University, after which I qualified as a lawyer in Korea. However, I had always been interested in international disputes, so I chose to attend Harvard Law School where I obtained an LLM and qualified as an attorney in New York. The skills I acquired there allow me to now enjoy both the appeal and the challenges of common and civil law. 

Has covid-19 had an impact on commercial arbitration? Are parties willing to be flexible in procedure and approach to get it over the line? 

The general trend shows that parties are flexible. Parties sometimes display a strong wish or dislike for virtual hearings, which may cause tensions as to time and costs purposes: one party may want to proceed with a virtual hearing, while the opposing party might rebuff such idea. However, parties generally appear willing to adapt to the current circumstances.

How did establishing the first ever transcontinental arbitration boutique match your expectations? 

We established Peter & Kim with the goal to offer a truly international platform with a team culturally rooted in Asia-Pacific and Western Europe. So far, the market response has been positive. We are able to represent Korean clients as we did before, and have been able to get more opportunities to represent international clients as a result of our synergy with Europe, which is an advantage for the clients. 

It has been noted that mediation is increasingly being used to resolve construction disputes. Why do you think it is becoming more popular as a form of dispute resolution? 

Mediation is indeed increasingly used. Half of our recent cases have involved mediation, either before or in conjunction with arbitration. I believe that the breakthrough for mediation started a couple years ago. Counsels have now more experience in mediation and recommend it more actively to clients as they recognise that it offers good results while cutting down on costs and time. 

Are cash flow issues stopping parties from bringing claims? 

Personally, we have yet to have any issue regarding cash flow. We have seen some hearings being postponed. However, procedural hearings with no witness examination continue to take place. We have also experienced virtual hearings with remote witness examination. We also have not heard of any similar issues for clients or other law firms. However, I believe that arbitrators might be more impacted if delays arise. 

To what extent can virtual hearings be relied on to decide high-stakes multibillion-dollar cases between parties? 

The issue is not so much related to the amount in dispute than it is to the client’s perception of virtual hearings. Governments are usually more reluctant to use virtual hearings and prefer traditional in-person hearings. They may accept partial virtual hearings, but it appears unlikely that a government will allow a case to be held entirely virtually. Commercial parties are more inclined to accept virtual hearings as long as the integrity of the proceedings are guaranteed. 

If you could implement one reform in international arbitration, what would it be? 

The Gangnam Principles, which call for multiple preliminary hearings scheduled early in the proceedings to sort out the issues of the case before the main hearing. They would allow for the parties to make their arguments early on and for an interactive session with the tribunal to determine the issues. The hearings do not have to be in person – they could be virtual so as to reduce the number of witnesses, shorten the examination and, overall, reduce the length of the hearing, which would not have to last an entire day but rather half days scheduled over the course of several weeks or months. The Gangnam Principles would allow for the parties and tribunal to slowly but steadily learn more about the case while saving time and money. 

What steps can younger arbitration practitioners take to improve their chances of getting appointments? Is there an important role to play here for experienced lawyers? 

I would suggest that experienced lawyers nominate younger arbitration practitioners as chairperson. Younger practitioners usually get their first appointments on small cases or as emergency arbitrators. However, I believe that this is not ideal as experience is required to deal with emergency cases in a satisfying manner. But as a chairperson, the younger practitioner would be able to learn, research and study the case while being assisted by experienced lawyers as co-arbitrators, who would provide guidance and assistance. 

WWL Ranking: Thought Leader

Global Leader

Arbitration 2020

Professional Biography

WWL Ranking: Global Elite Thought Leader

WWL says

Kap-You (Kevin) Kim “is a key figure in the Korean arbitration market” who has built “a strong network of arbitrators and practitioners” and is widely considered “a statesman in the market”.

Biography

Kap-You (Kevin) Kim is a senior partner at Peter & Kim in Seoul. He was previously a senior partner at Bae, Kim & Lee LLC, where he was the co-founder and head of the firm’s international arbitration practice and the head of its domestic and international disputes group. Under his supervision, Bae, Kim & Lee LLC’s international arbitration practice was listed in the GAR30 list of top arbitration practices worldwide in 2011, and was listed among the GAR 30 – 40 in 2018 and 2019.

In 2019, Kevin, together with co-founder Wolfgang Peter of Switzerland, founded the law firm of Peter & Kim with the aim of establishing the first ever transcontinental arbitration boutique. 

Kevin has been actively involved in international arbitration for the past three decades and has amassed a wealth of experience both as counsel and arbitrator. He has been involved in arbitrations conducted under all the major rules and seated in all the prominent arbitration venues. He is presently involved in a number of investment and commercial arbitrations as counsel and arbitrator, and is also serving as the president of an ICSID ad-hoc annulment committee.

He is considered a market leader in international arbitration by various industry rankings, with Chambers Asia reporting that clients consider Kevin to be "one of the most respected figures in the Asian arbitration space" and Who’s Who Legal listing him as one of its “Global Elite Thought Leaders” for international arbitration in 2020.

Among other positions that he holds, Kevin is presently a vice president of the ICC International Court of Arbitration, advisory board member of the International Council for Commercial Arbitration (ICCA), council member of the American Arbitration Association (AAA/ICDR) and chairman of the Korean Commercial Arbitration Board’s (KCAB) international arbitration committee.

In the past, Kevin has served as secretary general of ICCA (2010–2014), member of the LCIA Court (2007–2012) and vice chair of the IBA arbitration committee (2008–2010).

Kevin holds degrees from the Seoul National University College of Law (LLB, LLM) and Harvard Law School (LLM). He has authored a number of publications on international arbitration and litigation practice and was general editor of Arbitration Law of Korea: Practice & Procedure (Juris Publishing, 2012), the first hornbook on arbitration in Korea written in English. He also authored Arbitration Law & Practice (Bakyoungsa, 2012), a hornbook on arbitration in the Korean language. Kevin is licensed to practise in Korea and New York, and speaks Korean (native), English (fluent) and Japanese (conversational).

Construction 2020

Professional Biography

WWL Ranking: Recommended

WWL says

Kap-You (Kevin) Kim is an arbitration specialist renowned for his adept handling of high-value construction disputes.

Biography

Kap-You (Kevin) Kim is a senior partner at Peter & Kim in Seoul. He was previously a senior partner at Bae, Kim & Lee LLC, where he was the co-founder and head of the firm’s international arbitration practice and the head of its domestic and international disputes group. Under his supervision, Bae, Kim & Lee LLC’s international arbitration practice was listed in the GAR30 list of top arbitration practices worldwide in 2011, and was listed among the GAR 30 – 40 in 2018 and 2019.

In 2019, Kevin, together with co-founder Wolfgang Peter of Switzerland, founded the law firm of Peter & Kim with the aim of establishing the first ever transcontinental arbitration boutique. 

Kevin has been actively involved in international arbitration for the past three decades and has amassed a wealth of experience both as counsel and arbitrator. He has been involved in arbitrations conducted under all the major rules and seated in all the prominent arbitration venues. He is presently involved in a number of investment and commercial arbitrations as counsel and arbitrator, and is also serving as the president of an ICSID ad-hoc annulment committee.

He is considered a market leader in international arbitration by various industry rankings, with Chambers Asia reporting that clients consider Kevin to be "one of the most respected figures in the Asian arbitration space" and Who’s Who Legal listing him as one of its “Global Elite Thought Leaders” for international arbitration in 2020.

Among other positions that he holds, Kevin is presently a vice president of the ICC International Court of Arbitration, advisory board member of the International Council for Commercial Arbitration (ICCA), council member of the American Arbitration Association (AAA/ICDR) and chairman of the Korean Commercial Arbitration Board’s (KCAB) international arbitration committee.

In the past, Kevin has served as secretary general of ICCA (2010–2014), member of the LCIA Court (2007–2012) and vice chair of the IBA arbitration committee (2008–2010).

Kevin holds degrees from the Seoul National University College of Law (LLB, LLM) and Harvard Law School (LLM). He has authored a number of publications on international arbitration and litigation practice and was general editor of Arbitration Law of Korea: Practice & Procedure (Juris Publishing, 2012), the first hornbook on arbitration in Korea written in English. He also authored Arbitration Law & Practice (Bakyoungsa, 2012), a hornbook on arbitration in the Korean language. Kevin is licensed to practise in Korea and New York, and speaks Korean (native), English (fluent) and Japanese (conversational).

WWL Ranking: Recommended

National Leader

Korea - Arbitration 2020

Professional Biography

WWL Ranking: Recommended

WWL says

Kap-You (Kevin) Kim is a “big name in the market” and is considered “brilliant at arbitration”. 

Biography

Kap-You (Kevin) Kim is a senior founding partner at Peter & Kim in Seoul. He was previously a senior partner at Bae, Kim & Lee LLC, where he was the co-founder and head of the firm’s international arbitration practice and the head of its domestic and international disputes group. Under his supervision, Bae, Kim & Lee LLC’s international arbitration practice was listed in the GAR30 list of top arbitration practices worldwide in 2011, and was listed among the GAR 30 – 40 in 2018 and 2019.

In 2019, Kevin, together with co-founder Dr Wolfgang Peter of Switzerland, founded the law firm of Peter & Kim to establish the first-ever transcontinental arbitration boutique.

Kevin has been actively involved in international arbitration for the past three decades and has amassed a wealth of experience both as counsel and arbitrator. He has been involved in arbitrations conducted under various major rules and seated in all the prominent arbitration venues. He is presently involved in a number of investment and commercial arbitrations as counsel and arbitrator, and is also serving as the president of an ICSID ad-hoc annulment committee.

He is considered a market leader in international arbitration by various industry rankings, with Chambers Asia reporting that clients consider Kevin to be "one of the most respected figures in the Asian arbitration space" and Who’s Who Legal listing him as one of its “Global Elite Thought Leaders” for international arbitration in 2020.

Among other positions that he holds, Kevin is presently vice president of the ICC International Court of Arbitration, advisory board member of the International Council for Commercial Arbitration (ICCA), and chairman of the Korean Commercial Arbitration Board’s (KCAB) international arbitration committee.

In the past, Kevin has served as secretary-general of ICCA (2010–2014), member of the LCIA Court (2007–2012), and vice-chair of the IBA arbitration committee (2008–2010).

Kevin holds degrees from Seoul National University College of Law (LLB, LLM) and Harvard Law School (LLM). He has authored several publications on international arbitration and litigation practice and was general editor of Arbitration Law of Korea: Practice & Procedure (Juris Publishing, 2012), the first hornbook on arbitration in Korea written in English. He also authored Arbitration Law & Practice (Pakyoungsa, 2012), a hornbook on arbitration in the Korean language. Kevin is licensed to practise in Korea and New York, and speaks Korean (native), English (fluent), and Japanese (conversational).

WWL Ranking: Recommended

WWL says

Kap-You (Kevin) Kim is singled out by peers as “a very respected arbitration lawyer practising construction disputes”. 

Biography

Kap-You (Kevin) Kim is a senior founding partner at Peter & Kim in Seoul. He was previously a senior partner at Bae, Kim & Lee LLC, where he was the co-founder and head of the firm’s international arbitration practice and the head of its domestic and international disputes group. Under his supervision, Bae, Kim & Lee LLC’s international arbitration practice was listed in the GAR30 list of top arbitration practices worldwide in 2011, and was listed among the GAR 30 – 40 in 2018 and 2019.

In 2019, Kevin, together with co-founder Dr. Wolfgang Peter of Switzerland, founded the law firm of Peter & Kim to establish the first-ever transcontinental arbitration boutique.

Kevin has been actively involved in international arbitration for the past three decades and has amassed a wealth of experience both as counsel and arbitrator. He has been involved in arbitrations conducted under various major rules and seated in all the prominent arbitration venues. He is presently involved in a number of investment and commercial arbitrations as counsel and arbitrator, and is also serving as the president of an ICSID ad-hoc annulment committee.

He is considered a market leader in international arbitration by various industry rankings, with Chambers Asia reporting that clients consider Kevin to be "one of the most respected figures in the Asian arbitration space" and Who’s Who Legal listing him as one of its “Global Elite Thought Leaders” for international arbitration in 2020.

Among other positions that he holds, Kevin is presently vice president of the ICC International Court of Arbitration, advisory board member of the International Council for Commercial Arbitration (ICCA), and chairman of the Korean Commercial Arbitration Board’s (KCAB) international arbitration committee.

In the past, Kevin has served as secretary-general of ICCA (2010–2014), member of the LCIA Court (2007–2012), and vice-chair of the IBA arbitration committee (2008–2010).

Kevin holds degrees from Seoul National University College of Law (LLB, LLM) and Harvard Law School (LLM). He has authored several publications on international arbitration and litigation practice and was general editor of Arbitration Law of Korea: Practice & Procedure (Juris Publishing, 2012), the first hornbook on arbitration in Korea written in English. He also authored Arbitration Law & Practice (Pakyoungsa, 2012), a hornbook on arbitration in the Korean language. Kevin is licensed to practise in Korea and New York, and speaks Korean (native), English (fluent) and Japanese (conversational).

Korea - Litigation 2020

Professional Biography

WWL Ranking: Recommended

WWL says

Kap-You (Kevin) Kim is well thought of among peers for his first-class advocacy in domestic and international disputes across a range of industries, from energy to automotives.

Biography

Kap-You (Kevin) Kim is a senior founding partner at Peter & Kim in Seoul. He was previously a senior partner at Bae, Kim & Lee LLC, where he was the co-founder and head of the firm’s international arbitration practice and the head of its domestic and international disputes group. Under his supervision, Bae, Kim & Lee LLC’s international arbitration practice was listed in the GAR30 list of top arbitration practices worldwide in 2011, and was listed among the GAR 30 – 40 in 2018 and 2019.

In 2019, Kevin, together with co-founder Dr Wolfgang Peter of Switzerland, founded the law firm of Peter & Kim to establish the first ever transcontinental arbitration boutique.

Kevin has been actively involved in international arbitration for the past three decades and has amassed a wealth of experience both as counsel and arbitrator. He has been involved in arbitrations conducted under various major rules and seated in all the prominent arbitration venues. He is presently involved in a number of investment and commercial arbitrations as counsel and arbitrator, and is also serving as the president of an ICSID ad-hoc annulment committee.

He is considered a market leader in international arbitration by various industry rankings, with Chambers Asia reporting that clients consider Kevin to be "one of  the most respected figures in the Asian arbitration space" and Who’s Who Legal listing him as one of its “Global Elite Thought Leaders” for international arbitration in 2020.

Among other positions that he holds, Kevin is presently vice president of the ICC International Court of Arbitration, advisory board member of the International Council for Commercial Arbitration (ICCA), and chairman of the Korean Commercial Arbitration Board’s (KCAB) international arbitration committee.

In the past, Kevin has served as secretary-general of ICCA (2010–2014), member of the LCIA Court (2007–2012), and vice-chair of the IBA arbitration committee (2008–2010).

Kevin holds degrees from Seoul National University College of Law (LLB, LLM) and Harvard Law School (LLM). He has authored several publications on international arbitration and litigation practice and was general editor of Arbitration Law of Korea: Practice & Procedure (Juris Publishing, 2012), the first hornbook on arbitration in Korea written in English. He also authored Arbitration Law & Practice (Pakyoungsa, 2012), a hornbook on arbitration in the Korean language. Kevin is licensed to practise in Korea and New York, and speaks Korean (native), English (fluent) and Japanese (conversational).

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