Yoshihito Kawakami

Partner, Member of Tokyo Bar Association

Yoshihito Kawakami graduated from Waseda University in 2002. After returning to Japan in 2005, he joined the International Division of Ashinaga Scholarship Foundation. He was registered as an attorney in 2015. He provides legal assistance in labor law, antitrust law, and other areas to correct disparities in bargaining power and achieve fair contractual relationships. In the area of labor law, he helped establish the UberEats Union, a labor union of UberEats delivery workers, as the first labor union of platform workers in Japan. He has filed an unfair labor practice relief petition with the Tokyo Labor Relations Commission. In the area of antitrust law, he supported the establishment of Rakuten Union, an organization of Rakuten Ichiba store operators. It filed a cease and desist order request with the Fair Trade Commission, leading to the filing of an emergency cease and desist order for the first time in 16 years. Other activities include injunction of forced closing of SoftBank agency to SoftBank. He has also worked on foreign and LGBT human rights issues, and in 2019 overturned a district court ruling that invalidated an adoption between homosexual prisoners and won a reversal of the case in the Tokyo High Court. He has also represented the family of a Nepalese national who died while in custody at a police station, and a former foreign technical intern who suffered burns all over his body after being set on fire by a colleague while at work.

Education and Professional Background

2002 : Graduated from Waseda University, School of Commerce
2002 : Joined Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers as Community Development Officer in the Republic of the Niger
2005 : Joined Ashinaga (NGO providing educational and financial support to orphaned children)
2013 : Graduated from Meiji University, Graduate School, Juris Doctor Course (Law School)
2015 : Registered as attorney at law in Japan
2019 : After a stint at Tokyo Kyodo Law Office, participated as one of the partners of Waseda Legal Commons, LPC

Membership and Official Positions

Delegate, Japan Federation of Bar Associations
Executive Board and Deputy Secretary-General of the Labour Lawyers Association of Japan
Founding member of the Forum for Traffic Safety and Labour


July 15, 2022: GAFAM Domination and Democratic Regulation Chapter 5
2022: Supervision Platform Business “Free Work” Trap
August 2021: Labor Issues and Legal Challenges for Freelancers (Labor Law Quarterly, early August 2021)
“On the State of Worker Protection : With Reference to Overseas Cases (Special Feature: Current Situation and Challenges in the Workplace Not Based on Employment)” (Labor Law Junpo, February 2019)
Destructive Impacts of the Use of ICT and the Independent Work Outside the Employment Relation” (Annual Report of the Japan Society of Labor Sociology, 2018)
“The Legal Issues of Labor and Employment that the ‘Gig Economy’ Implicates” (Economy, September 2018)
“Issues in the Sharing Economy as Seen through Ridesharing” (Labor Survey, August 2018)
‘On the Labor Situation at UberEats’ (Labor Rights Quarterly, 2018)
“Special Feature: ‘The Sharing Economy’: What’s Happening Behind the Scenes” (Friday Weekly, February 2018)
Legal Issues Concerning the Sharing Economy,” (Business Labor Trends, December 2017 )
Freelance Labor Issues and Legal Challenges” (Labor Law Quarterly, early August 2021)


August 29, 2022: Lecturer on labor law at Tama Branch of Tokyo San Bengoshikai
April 6, 2022: Current Status of Gig Workers and Future of Labor Legislation (hosted by) Japan CSR Promotion Association


Japanese, English, French, Zarma