Hainan Special Economic Zone Liberalises the Legal Service Sector

New regulations with regard to the operation of legal firms within the Hainan Special Economic Zone have been adopted by the Standing Committee of the Hainan Provincial People’s Congress and came into force as of 1 October this year.

This has seen a few key changes introduced, including:

1) In addition to practising lawyers, certified accountants, certified tax agents, certified cost engineers, patent attorneys and other professionals will be permitted to become partners of special general partnership law firms. The number of non-lawyer partners and their total capital contribution, however, may not exceed 25% of the total in either case.

2) To enhance liberalisation of the legal service sector, the new regulations, among others, allow representative offices of Hong Kong, Macao and other foreign law firms to deal with certain Hainan-related non-litigation legal matters, and set up legal partnership associations with mainland law firms in the special economic zone.

Full details of these extended entitlements can be found in the Regulations of the Hainan Special Economic Zone on Lawyers (Announcement No. 36) as issued by the Standing Committee of the Hainan Provincial People’s Congress on 27 September.

Source: Standing Committee of the Hainan Provincial People’s Congress

Related article: Hainan government department contact details

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