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Family/Juvenile
In domestic relations cases, the court deals with disputes among family members or relatives. In juvenile offense cases, the judge may make protective disposition such as adjustment of surroundings or correction of conduct against a juvenile under the age of 19 who has committed a crime. In domestic violence cases, the judge may make protective disposition such as adjustment of surroundings or correction of conduct against the person who committed violence toward the member of his/her family.
Domestic Relations Case
Domestic Relations Case
Domestic relations issues include judicial divorce, nullity of marriage, affirmation of existence or nonexistence of family relationship, claim for damages caused by divorce, refusal of inheritance, division of property between divorced couple, child custody and support, and division of inherited property. The court resolves domestic relations disputes through judgment, ruling, and conciliation. In general, some family litigation cases such as judicial divorce or claim for damages caused by divorce as well as some family non-litigation cases such as child custody and support or division of inherited property are subject to conciliation proceedings. The court before which a lawsuit is brought, attended by the judge in charge of conciliation, or the conciliation committee chaired by a judge and composed of two or more laypersons, holds conciliation proceedings.
Each year, the chief judge of a family court, a branch court or a family branch court selects the members of the conciliation committee from among lawyers, doctors, social workers, psychologists, or others of appropriate knowledge and distinguished reputation. In general, conciliation proceedings require the presence of each party and are closed to the public. Conciliation is effectuated by entering in the protocol the matters agreed on between the parties, and has the same effect as judicial reconciliation. The presiding judge of the court or chairperson of the conciliation committee should direct the investigative officer to investigate factual matters, the result of which can be a basis for trial or conciliation proceedings. Furthermore, in cases such as judicial divorce, nullity of marriage, etc., the court should conduct ex officio fact-finding when it is deemed necessary. The court may order the person concerned not to alter the existing circumstances or not to dispose of evidence, or make other prior dispositions as deemed appropriate. If a person who ought to perform his/her obligation to pay money or to deliver an infant pursuant to the judgment fails to fulfill his/her obligation, the court may order him/her to fulfill such obligation within a specified period.
Domestic Relations Cases
Year 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
First trial 53,032 54,458 53,562 51,621 51,401
Intermediate appeal 2,101 2,469 2,609 2,749 2,690
Fianl appeal 442 445 522 537 566
Juvenile Offense Case
Juvenile Offense Case
In case a juvenile aged between 10 to 19 years commits a crime or is delinquent, the chief of a police station, a public prosecutor, or the court may forward a case to the juvenile division of a competent family court or a district court. The judge of the juvenile division directs an investigative officer to investigate the crime and the environment of the juvenile, and decides the case based on the report of the investigative officer. The judge may make protective disposition against the juvenile. Under protective disposition, the juvenile may be left to the care of a guardian, be placed under the supervision of a probation officer, or be sent to a juvenile protection institution, a hospital, or a juvenile reformatory. A community service order or an order to attend a lecture may be issued concurrently with such disposition. However, the protection disposition imposed on the juvenile shall not in any event affect the juvenile's future status.
Juvenile Offense Cases
Year 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015
Cases 46,493 53,536 43,035 34,165 34,074
Domestic Violence Case
In case of violence between the members of same household such as a spouse or lineal relatives, which results in physical or mental injury, or property damage, a public prosecutor or the court may forward a case to a competent family court or a district court. A judge of such court may make a protective disposition, which is aimed at restoring the peace and stability disturbed by the violence as well as improving the constitution of a household. If it is deemed necessary for protection of a victim or proper investigation, a judge may take the following provisional measures: order an offender to leave the dwelling and stay apart from the victim or other family members or order an offender not to enter within a 100 meter radius from the victim's dwelling, etc. In general, a judge directs an investigative officer to investigate a case and decides the case based on the report of the investigative officer. The judge may make one or more protective dispositions against an offender, such as restriction on approach to the victim, a community service order, an order to attend a lecture, probation, and consignment of an offender to an institution for the purpose of preventive custody, rehabilitation, or consultation.
From October 2011, Domestic Violence Victim Protective Order system is adopted. Therefore, victims of domestic violence can apply a protective order directly to a relevant family court without having to go through law enforcement agencies. The types of protective orders are as follow: disposition to isolate including disposition to remove a offender from victim’s residence; disposition to limit access not less than 100m from victim’s workplace and/or residence; disposition to prohibit contact to a victim by using electronic devices; disposition to limit offender’s parental right over a victim. When there is an application of Domestic Violence Victim Protective Order, a judge can order ex officio a temporary protective order which has same content on Domestic Violence Victim Protective Order.
Domestic Violence Cases
Year 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Cases 3,257 3,085 3,801 6,468 9,489
Child Protection Trials
Effective from September 29, 2014, child protection trial system commenced its operation in Korea. Child protection trials are court procedures to protect abused child from abuse of protector of a child younger than age 18, in cases when the protector of child harms the child's health or welfare, or commits physical, mental or sexual violence that may impede normal growth of the child. The courts' involvements in the procedures of the crimes of child abuse are (1) the criminal procedures to punish child abusers by imprisonment and (2) the child protection cases on child abuser and cases of protection order for abused child.
If deemed necessary to make disposition for protection after investigation and hearing of child protection case, the court can issue orders such as: restriction on a child abuser not to approach the abused child or the child's family member or to approach by using the means of telecommunication; entrusting an abused child to a protection facility for guard and protection or to a medical institution for medical treatment; restriction or suspension of the exercise of parental and guardianship power on the abused child; etc. In addition, orders for the compensation required to support the abused child or family member(s), such as monetary payments, can also be issued with the disposition of protection.
Meanwhile, procedures on cases of the protection order for abused child can be commenced by direct request of an abused child or a head of an agency in exclusive charge of child welfare, etc. to the court or by the family court judge ex officio; and if deemed necessary, judges investigate and hear the case and issue orders such as restriction on a child abuser to keep away from the domicile of the abused child; entrusting an abused child to a child welfare facility or to a welfare facility for persons with disabilities for protection; entrusting a medical institution for medical treatment; entrusting to a relative who can provide foster home; etc. Family court judges issue provisional protection order if a temporary protection order is deemed necessary for an abused child.
219 Seocho-ro,Seocho-gu,Seoul 06590,Republic of Korea 02-3480-1100