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The Herbert Smith Freehills Australia Japan Practice is a unique team of experienced bilingual and bicultural lawyers. We specialise in advising Japanese businesses on their investments and operations in Australia.

Global Network

Our offices in Japan and Australia, supported by a global network of offices, means you will always be advised by the best and most experienced team.

  • In Australia – We are the largest law firm and consistently ranked No.1 in M&A (both in number of deals advised and value of deals) and as the market leader in banking & finance, dispute resolution, employment, infrastructure, construction, real estate, restructuring & insolvency, intellectual property, information technology and competition law. We have been awarded Australian Deal Team of the Year in 2021 and 2022 by the Australasian Law Awards.
  • In Japan –  Our Tokyo office opened in 2000 and is one of the leading law firms in Japan. We are recognised as having one of the largest and most experienced teams of registered foreign lawyers in Tokyo. Our corporate/M&A, dispute resolution, projects and energy, construction and TMT practices in Japan are consistently ranked on top by legal directories.

Japan market leader

We have more experience advising Japanese businesses on Australian investments than any other law firm. Our clients benefit from our strategic advice and ability to identify potential deal issues early in an investment.

We understand Japan

Most of our team have worked at leading Japanese companies, giving us a distinctive insight into the internal processes of Japanese businesses. We have a deep understanding of Japan’s economy, and the commercial drivers and risk tolerance of Japanese businesses.

Advice to fit your specific needs

We advise Japanese clients from all sectors, from major trading houses to companies considering investing in Australia for the first time. We are also increasingly working with Australian businesses on Japan-related transactions.


Our experienced and integrated cross-border practice delivers high quality cost-efficient advice. Our partners and senior lawyers have extensive experience advising Japanese businesses, and are supported by an energetic group of talented young lawyers.

Click here for an overview of our full Australia-Japan Practice team

Key contacts

Damien Roberts photo

Damien Roberts

Partner, Sydney

Damien Roberts
Melissa Swain-Tonkin photo

Melissa Swain-Tonkin

Partner, Brisbane

Melissa Swain-Tonkin
Ian Williams photo

Ian Williams

Senior Adviser, Sydney

Ian Williams