English-speaking Japanese lawyer at central Tokyo, handling immigration/asylum cases, family law and employment law matters, and medical malpractice cases.

Office of Mr.Korenari KAI,Attorney-at-Law


◆ Introduction:
After spending close to thirty years as a Japanese diplomat, I opened my legal practice in the central Tokyo area in 2003.

Korenari KAI:Attorney-at-Law

In my early days as a practicing lawyer, I had a chance to join a team of the plaintiff’s attorneys in a case over the copyright in an animation film, which encouraged me to write an article on animation films from the perspective of copyright law. I was also seconded to be one of the speakers on transnational estate planning at the 2006 New York State Bar Association meeting in Shanghai.On many occasions, I advised foreign clients primarily on employment law-related matters.

When advising foreign clients, I naturally drew on my extensive experience of working and living overseas as a diplomat, in environments of cultural and ethnic diversity.

◆ Emphasis in Recent Years-Unity in Diversity:
However, I have more recently shifted the weight of my professional interest to expatriates living in Japan. I recall more and more intimately the engraving in a rock I happened to notice in the compound of my residence when I was serving in Geneva. It read: Unity in Diversity. I honestly believe in this philosophy, and readily admit that it is what is sadly lacking in the Japanese society. I am now actively advising and representing foreign residents on such matters as immigration/asylum, family law, employment law, etc. I see this as my small way of serving the cause of “Unity in Diversity.” Foreigners’ access to legal advice and representation is limited in Japan due largely to language barrier, cultural hurdle, red-taping, and perhaps mistrust between the two sides, Japanese and foreign. Naturally, the situation is even worse for those who do not have proper visa. My hope is that through advising and where necessary legally representing those who are in need, I can help foreign residents feel a little more at home in this country. I am quite prepared to go to the length of suing the government for its perceived wrongful decision, and do so in the spirit of pro bono publico.

I also deal with medical malpractice cases from the patient’s perspective. I am a rarity in this respect, because there are very few lawyers in Japan who are at home in English and have interest and experience in this highly specialized field of law.

I work exclusively in civil matters. Criminal defense is not part of my practice.

◆ Got an Immigration/Asylum, Family Law, Employment Law or Medical Malpractice Case?
If you are seeking legal advice or representation on these matters, you are quite welcome to contact me by E-mail to fix an appointment.

◆ Reasonable Fees:Humanitarian Consideration at Work
I charge fees at the going rate for straight commercial/business matters.

Where I am convinced that humanitarian consideration should be at work, however, I am prepared to work at greatly reduced rates. For example, I am prepared to make use of the scheme of legal aid for the financially disadvantaged. Where legal aid is available, legal consultation is free of charge. In the same vein, where legal aid is extended, there is no financial burden for the litigant at the time of bringing his/her case to the court.

◆ Working Languages:
I am perfectly at home in English. For other languages, however, clients are expected to bring along interpreters. Here again, though, there is legal aid available for the financially disadvantaged.

Curriculum Vitae

Korenari KAI,Mr

Academic Degrees: Bachelor of Law, University of Tokyo (1969)
LL.B (International Law), University of Cambridge (UK) (1976)
Bar Association Membership: The Dai-Ni Tokyo Bar Association
The New York State Bar Association

◆Professional Background:

Joined the Japanese Foreign Service.
Overseas postings included: the UK, the Netherlands, Papua New Guinea, Geneva, New York, Australia
Headquarters responsibilities included: treaties (*1), United Nations matters, human/cultural exchanges(*2)
Consul-General of Japan in Brisbane, Australia(*3)
Resigned from the Foreign Service for family reasons, and started legal training at the Legal Training and Research Institute belonging to the Supreme Court of Japan.
Admitted to The Dai-Ni Tokyo Bar Association.
Opened private law practice (bengoshi*) in Tokyo.
*Authorized to practice in any field of the Japanese law.
Joined the New York State Bar Association.

*1. Negotiated for double taxation agreements, investment protection agreements, Yen loan exchanges of notes, etc. with various governments. Also negotiated for peaceful uses of atomic energy agreements with a few countries.

*2. Responsibilities included human/cultural exchanges, scholarships/fellowships and promotion of Japanese language/Japanese studies overseas.

*3. Encouraged, among others, human/cultural/small-and-medium-scale-industry contacts between Japan and Queensland, Australia.

◆ Working Languages:
Japanese and English
◆ Practice Areas:
Immigration/Asylum, Family law, Employment law, Medical Malpractice, etc.


Korenari KAI Korenari KAI

>>Curriculum Vitae