©2001-2023 Atumi & Sakai
It is an important social mission of Atsumi & Sakai (A&S) to promote sustainability and contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that the international community aspires to and the realization of a prosperous and vibrant future through the SDGs.
A&S has established a Sustainability Committee, chaired by the Chief Sustainability Officer (CSO) and composed of seven lawyers, foreign lawyers, and other members, as a framework for promoting sustainability activities.
The Sustainability Committee promotes sustainability within A&S and identifies key sustainability issues and discusses policies for addressing them, taking into account their contribution to and impact on the firm's stakeholders, including clients, the environment, and society.
At present, the international community is faced with challenges such as the spread of the coronavirus and its prolonged effects, the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine and its neighboring region, and natural disasters caused by climate change and extreme weather events, all of which require society to adapt rapidly. We have been working to meet these challenges by keeping a close eye on trends in the international community, as well as changes in the society and the environment in which we operate. We will continue to promptly implement measures to ensure the continuity of our business operations, as well as to identify social issues and needs, and contribute to building a sustainable and better society for all.
Our mission is to create comprehensive solutions tailored for each deal from the perspective of best legal practice to create value for our clients, and to simultaneously play a leading role in promoting the fair development of the business society.
We continue to be actively engaged in both new and contemporary areas of law and to rise to the challenge of solving complex and diverse issues. We have established a Policy Research Institute dedicated to bridging the gaps between new policies and practice, as well as to publish research findings and recommendations.
Furthermore, A&S has consistently demonstrated an awareness of the importance of local regions, including by supporting regional financial institutions and small and medium-sized enterprises, which play an important role in regional development, and has been committed to the sound development of local companies that support the Japanese economy and provide solutions to regional issues.
By further promoting these activities and making full use of the knowledge and experience we have accumulated as a law firm, we will strive to support the sustainability of society as a whole.
A&S is a full-service international law firm with offices in Tokyo, London*1, New York, and Frankfurt.
In addition to Japanese lawyers with extensive experience in international business, our team*2 includes a significant number of registered foreign lawyers*3 and other foreign attorneys*4, enabling us to handle international matters in the manner global businesses would expect. Further, through our membership of several international legal networks and our own global connections, we partner and collaborate with leading law firms and other professionals around the world.
By utilizing these resources, we aim to engage in deeper dialogue with our clients from an international perspective and act together with them to contribute to solving sustainability issues not only in Japan but throughout the world.
*1 Atsumi & Sakai is not regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority for England and Wales.
*2 Registered foreign lawyers (foreign lawyers who can advise on specified foreign laws in Japan) and other foreign lawyers represent 15% of all our lawyers.*
*3 The jurisdictions our registered foreign lawyers can currently advise on are the laws of the US States of New York and California, India, England and Wales, and the State of Queensland, Australia.*
*4 Foreign lawyers (but not registered foreign lawyers) whose jurisdiction of primary qualification is the laws of the State of New York, the State of Illinois, England and Wales(*1), the Republic of Ireland, the People's Republic of China, the Republic of Korea, and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. *
Protecting fundamental human rights and realizing social justice are missions of our lawyers, foreign lawyers, and legal professional corporations.
In addition to acting as court-appointed defense counsel, A&S actively practices in and promotes pro bono and Bar association activities, training programs conducted by closely related professional associations, lectures on legal subjects at universities and graduate schools, mentoring of legal apprentices, participation in review meetings at public institutions, and other public interest activities that are essential for the realization of our mission as lawyers.
Through the provision of legal services to corporations, public agencies, and other entities, we have played a role in resolving human rights issues throughout society. Regarding respect for human rights by companies, we provide support through internal training, establishment and operation of whistle-blowing systems, advice on labor issues, and human rights due diligence on their supply chains.
We aim not only to eliminate infringements of human rights in our own business activities, but also to deepen our understanding of our business partners and all of our closely associated stakeholders and to promote respect for human rights.
We aim to provide a welcoming workplace environment where firm members from different backgrounds are all respected and can utilize their skills and abilities to the fullest extent regardless of race, nationality, gender, creed, age, sexual orientation or gender identity, career history or lifestyle.
Our Practice Group system and other activities within A&S provide an environment in which opinions and suggestions can be expressed regardless of background, position, or other factors.
In addition, we have made special efforts to create a safe and welcoming workplace for women lawyers; we provide a support system for maternity leave before and after childbirth and for returning to work afterwards, and have created a workplace culture in which firm members of any gender can work based on our basic policy for the prevention of sexual harassment and power harassment. As a result, at present* 26% of our lawyers and 25% of our partners are female. We also promote a work-life balance across the board by providing a system for members of the firm to take nursing care leave, switch to part-time work, or return to full-time work.
For young lawyers, A&S provides opportunities for internal and external training, study abroad, and secondment to government agencies, client companies, and overseas law firms, creating an environment in which they can challenge themselves and grow while supporting each other.
By creating a pleasant and rewarding work environment, we aim to be an organization that brings forth the next generation.
As a group of professionals including numerous Japanese bengoshi, registered foreign lawyers, and other foreign lawyers, we maintain the highest ethical standards and strict compliance with Bar and other regulations.
In order to ensure and promote compliance by all members of A&S, we have established a Legal & Compliance Division, to which lawyers have been exclusively assigned, and established a Code of Ethics and Conduct, as well as rules for compliance with laws and regulations, and the rules of the Japan Federation of Bar Associations.
In light of the importance of compliance with confidentiality obligations and protection of personal information by lawyers, we have established an information security management system, as well as internal rules including a basic policy for information security, to ensure appropriate handling, management, protection, and maintenance of important information assets, including and personal and other information handled in the course of our duties.
In addition to comply with the laws, regulations and other rules of the countries and regions in which we operate, we require our business partners to take appropriate actions, and as a law firm we provide legal services with integrity and fairness in accordance with our principles and contribute to our clients' compliance through our work.
We have also been involved in the development of governance systems and guidelines in various industries and for government agencies and will continue to contribute to the improvement of corporate compliance.
* As of February 17, 2023