Parliamentary subcommittee passes bills on scrapping 'Korean age'
SEOUL, Dec. 6 (Yonhap) -- A parliamentary subcommittee on Tuesday passed a set of bills requiring the use of the international age counting system in all judicial and administrative areas, rather than the unique "Korean age" counting system.
The legislative subcommittee of the National Assembly's legislation and judiciary committee passed revisions to the Civil Act and the General Act on Public Administration, which would unify the country's multiple age systems to the internationally recognized system in which age is based on birth date.
In South Korea, three age systems are currently in use. The most commonly used system is the so-called Korean age, under which a person turns 1 on the day they are born and adds a year on the first day of the new year.
The second system is the internationally recognized system, whereby a person's age is determined according to their birth date, while the third system adds a year to a person's age on the first day of the new year.
Critics have raised concerns that the different systems may cause confusion in providing welfare, medical and administrative services and incur unnecessary social costs.
President Yoon Suk-yeol pledged to unify the age system as one of his campaign promises.
Under the revisions, a person's age will be calculated and stated based on their birth date with the exception of special cases indicated in law.
Age will be stated in months for infants who were born less than a year ago.
The revisions are expected to go through the parliamentary legislation and judiciary committee on Wednesday ahead of being tabled at a plenary session of the National Assembly.
It will go into effect six months after promulgation should it be passed.
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