On May 13, 2016, the Anti-Corruption & Civil Rights Commission (the “Commission”) announced for public comment its draft Enforcement Decree to the Act on the Prohibition of Improper Solicitation and Provision/Reception of Bribes (the “Act”). The Act, widely known as the Kim Young-ran Law, was enacted back in March 2015.

Various strata of Korean society have criticized the Act with some legal commentators arguing that the Act is unconstitutional as it excessively extends the scope of criminal punishment. The Blue House recently commented that the Act may become an obstacle to the nation’s economic revitalization. Although the government, when the Act was enacted, announced that it would promulgate its Enforcement Decree shortly, the issuance of the draft Enforcement Decree was long delayed due to mounting criticisms and conflicting opinions. Now that the draft Enforcement Draft has been proposed, it seems that the final Enforcement Decree will come into effect soon.

A summary of the main issues of the Act and the draft Enforcement Decree and their implications are presented.