LLM Programme

The taught modules offered on the LLM programme vary from year to year. Please check the full list of taught modules list for details of modules running in specific academic years. We make every effort to ensure that every module will be offered, but modules are subject to change and cancellation. You are therefore advised to check this site regularly for further updates throughout the year preceding entry to the LLM programme.

Credit value: 30 credits (12 ECTS)
Module Convenor:
Professor Hiroshi Oda
Intercollegiate teaching: No
Teaching Method: 20 x two-hour seminars
Who may enrol: LLM students, Other UCL Masters students
Prerequisites: None
Barred module combinations: None
Core module for specialism: Comparative Law, Corporate Law, International Commercial Law
Practice Assessment: To be confirmed
Assessment method for Masters students: Three-hour unseen written examination
Module Overview

Module summary

The module covers areas of Japanese law which are relevant to foreign Investment into Japan. It focuses on the new Company Law of 2005 which has totally replaced the previous law of a German origin and instead, became closer to US law (see Hiroshi Oda, “Americanisation of Japanese Company Law?” in Rabels Zeitschrift für vergleichendes Privatrecht, 2005). Changes introduced by the reform will be critically analysed. Corporate governance and M&A are core topics in the module. The module also covers related reforms in securities law (Securities and Exchange Law was replaced by the new Financial Products Transaction Law) and insolvency law.

Module syllabus

Japanese Law has gone through substantial changes since the mid-1990s. In almost every area, new laws were enacted or existing laws underwent major amendments. This module is designed to cover these changes in the past decade.

No knowledge of Japanese is required. The manuscript of the third edition of Oda, Japanese Law, Oxford University Press. 2009, will be provided.

  • Introduction to Japanese Law (Sources of law, the “justice system reform”, legal profession)
  • Japanese Law as part of the Romano-Germanic System and the Influence of US Law (Codification, post-War Reform, the “Regulatory Reform”)
  • The Civil Code as the Core of the System of Private Law (The Concept of Juristic Acts)
  • Contract Law/Law of Obligations
  • The New Companies Act of 2005(Americanisation of the Company Law)
  • M&A and Defensive Measures in Japan
  • The “Financial Big Bang” and the New Financial Instruments Exchange Law
  • The Anti-Monopoly Act (Competition Law)
  • New Labour Contract Law
  • Dispute Settlement (Court Procedure and Arbitration)

Recommended materials

Japanese Commercial Law, 3rd edition, Oxford University Press

Preliminary reading: To be confirmed

Other information: N/A
Prizes for this module: There are currently no prizes available for this module.


The application process for the 2014-15 academic session, for entry in September 2014, is now closed.

Information regarding applications for September 2015 will be updated on the website in September 2014.

IMPORTANT NOTICE : Updated 28 May 2014

The Home Office issued an update about the acceptance of ETS tests (including TOEFL). They have now confirmed that Higher Education students applying for a Tier 4 visa may use a TOEFL test taken after 17 April, if a Higher Education Institution is willing to use its academic discretion. For those students entering in September 2014, UCL will continue to accept the TOEFL even if it was taken after 17 April. However, if an applicant still needs to book a test then we recommend that they take an alternative test to TOEFL. Those who have already arranged to take a different test following the previous advice from the Home Office, we encourage you to go ahead with taking the alternative test.

The TOEFL test will continue to be accepted for 2014 entrants who have been asked to take an English language qualification as part of their offer condition, and do not need to apply for a visa to study in the UK.