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Following an extensive nomination process, Asia Business Law Journal unveils the top performers of Taiwan’s legal profession. Nguyen Yen and Lim Miran report

Taiwan has shown remarkable resilience and adaptability in recent years, with many industries continuing to grow and innovate. The island has a strong manufacturing sector in technology and semiconductors, which have become a focus of the global supply chain, attracting international investment.

However, the volatility of global markets has placed Taiwan in a tough position, with GDP growth at just 2.43% last year, and forecast to slide lower to 2.12% this year. Amid looming concerns about the potential impact of the semiconductor shortage on exports, Taiwan continues to diversify its economy and boost its tourism industry.

As the economy faces headwinds, the legal landscape is evolving to keep pace with a changing business environment. Several legal developments were recently introduced aimed at strengthening the business environment and improving competitiveness.

In April 2022, the legislature passed modifications to the Copyright Act, Trademark Act and Patent Act to modernise the IP regimes, comply with the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership, and enhance protection for IP rights owners.

In January this year, the Controlled Foreign Company (CFC) Rules came into force, aiming to prevent the artificial diversion of profits from Taiwan to CFCs operating in low or zero-tax jurisdictions. The rules ensure that income earned through foreign entities is still subject to tax by requiring Taiwanese residents to include in their taxable income the portion of undistributed earnings of CFCs attributable to their direct or indirect ownership.

Against this backdrop, Asia Business Law Journal presents the A-List of the best 100 practising lawyers in Taiwan. The list is based on extensive research conducted and nominations received from in-house counsel based in Taiwan and elsewhere, as well as Taiwan-focused partners at international law firms.

Nearly all of the A-List lawyers are strategically located in Taipei, the island’s economic centre and the headquarters of many companies and legal institutions.

Comments submitted to Asia Business Law Journal by clients suggest that companies seek skilled lawyers who can provide high-quality legal advice and representation to help businesses achieve their goals and stay ahead in the global marketplace.

The veterans

Good lawyers treat their clients with the utmost professionalism, but great lawyers can take that to new heights by identifying the specific needs and styles of each client. With years of extensive knowledge, seasoned lawyers are instrumental in helping clients achieve their goals, and build trusting relationships with their peers.

Hung Ou Yang, the managing partner at Brain Trust International, is one example, endorsed by Gary Cheng, senior account manager at US multinational publishing company John Wiley & Sons in Taipei.

“He would defend your right and seek justice for you with every fibre of his being,” says Cheng. “If you need legal assistance, you should make an appointment with him.”


Hung is also a go-to lawyer for Grant Tanabe, foreign law counsel at Sonderhoff & Einsel in Tokyo. “Our firm has engaged him on multiple occasions to advise our global Japanese client on the ins and outs of Taiwan’s regulatory system for medical devices,” says Tanabe.

“Although the issues and regulations involving medical devices were quite complex, he was able to easily decipher them and provide our clients with the practical advice that they needed.”

James Hsiao, a senior partner at Dentons Taiwan, is praised by Jeannette Hung, executive vice president at one of Taiwan’s largest commercial banks, Cathay United Bank in Taipei, as “the best M&A and capital markets lawyer in Taiwan for his superior expertise, profound knowledge and abundant hands-on experiences and visibility in M&A, IPOs and other capital markets matters”.

“He has done excellent work for our group on a number of occasions and become not only a lawyer but a long-term adviser and partner to our group,” says Hung. “We have found him to live up to his reputation, and he is the most trusted lawyer I have come across in my professional career in higher management.”

Vincent Hsieh, a senior adviser of the board of directors at electric and machinery corporation Teco Group in Taipei, recommends Formosa Transnational’s senior partner, Jackson Huang Shuai-Sheng, for his “considerable experience in many legal fields, especially disputes over management rights of listed companies”.

Legal luminary

As Taiwan’s economy continues to expand its global presence, companies are facing increasingly complex legal issues, from cross-border transactions and regulatory compliance to IP protection and dispute resolution. Many lawyers have established themselves as experts in these areas and are recommended by their clients as highly skilled legal professionals.

Eugenia Chuang, a partner at KPMG Law, stands out from the crowd as a trusted adviser to her clients in cross-border arbitration and litigation. “You always want Eugenia on your side. She is very talented and a strategic negotiator,” says Craig Loveless, a Singapore-based partner at Norton Rose Fulbright.

Chuang has also impressed many other clients, including Jean-Paul Wou, a barrister at ALSC Chambers in Hong Kong, who recommends her as “an astute and capable” lawyer.

“She holds her client’s interests at heart but never loses sight of commercial reality. Her work is solid, yet her approach is practical,” says Wou. “On a personal level, Eugenia has tremendous personal skills and is well liked and respected by her clients and her team.”

Lee and Li partner Tseng Ken-Ying receives high praise from her clients for her exceptional legal skills and dedication to providing valuable advice in the fields of personal data protection, e-commerce and the regulation and trends of the internet.

“She clearly understands clients’ needs and identifies key issues very promptly and accurately,” says Tsai Hsiao-Wei, legal lead at messaging app company LINE Taiwan in Taipei. “The very manner she reaches into that depth of each case is really commendable. Her extreme passion and deep professionalism produce valuable legal advice every time.”

Tseng is also commended by Sharon Lau, a partner at Latham & Watkins in Singapore. “Ken-Ying works closely with her clients to deliver creative solutions on complicated multi-jurisdictional M&A transactions. She was always reachable and would brainstorm solutions with me at all random hours.”

Mike Lu, a partner at Lexcel Partners, is nominated by Joseph Yu, chairman of the Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists’ Taiwan chapter in Taipei, who has known Lu for almost 20 years and values his expertise in corporate matters, M&A, commercial transactions and financial compliance.

“Mike is a smart, respectful and dedicated lawyer who not only provides clients with useful legal solutions but cares about real business needs in different industries,” says Yu. “He has been in legal practice for decades, which is long enough for him to know every detail of the background and history of the legislation. We always appreciate his precious legal insights, which help us tackle the most difficult issues or break through legal barriers.”

At LCS & Partners, senior counsel Mark Harty is highly regarded by Andrew Clarke, counsel at multinational law firm Norton Rose Fulbright in Tokyo.

Mark Harty and his team at LCS are trustworthy and commercially focused Taiwan counsel, and we routinely work with them for energy transition-related investments, particularly offshore wind,” says Clarke. “Their service is client-focused driven, and Mark always makes himself available at short notice to address issues as they arise.”

Compiling the A-List

The A-List is based on extensive research conducted by Asia Business Law Journal. To identify the top 100 lawyers in Taiwan, we turned to thousands of in-house counsel in Taiwan and around the world – as well as partners at international law firms – and asked them to tell us which lawyers should make the cut. Nominations were made by professionals at a wide range of Taiwan and global companies, financial institutions and law firms including: 17LIVE, ALSC Chambers, the Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists, Axiros, Cathay United Bank, China Airlines, Christie’s, Clarins, CSBC Corporation, Deacons, Everbrite Technology, Fonbuda Strategy, Giant Manufacturing, John Wiley & Sons, Jusregal CPA Firm, Keslow Films, Latham & Watkins, Layer One, Lifund Tech, LINE Taiwan, Maiora Renewable Energy, Merits & Tree, Nestle Taiwan, Norton Rose Fulbright, Pernod Ricard, Philip Morris Taiwan, Shin & Kim, Shin Kong Life Insurance, Sing Da Marine, SK Valves, Softstar Entertainment, Sonderhoff & Einsel, STMicroelectronics, Storm Media, Teco Group, TotalEnergies, Vizio, WElink Group, White & Case, and many more. The nomination process was backed up by thorough editorial research.

The final list reflects the nominations received, combined with the Asia Business Law Journal editorial team’s more than 30 years of collective experience in documenting and analysing Taiwan’s legal market. All Taiwan private practice lawyers were automatically eligible for inclusion in the nomination process and, as always, there were no fees or any other requirements for entry.

The names and photographs of all 100 A-List lawyers are published here. In addition, each A-List lawyer was given the opportunity to include their biography and contact details, for which a publishing fee was charged.

It is important to note that while the compilation of the A-List was based solely on independent research, the biographies and contact details that appear alongside many of the listings have been written by the participating lawyers, and the content has not been independently verified by Asia Business Law Journal.

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