Divorce Attorney Shin season 1 finale recap, review & ending explained

In the finale of Divorce Attorney Shin, Sung-han fights Jeong-guk and Yeong-ju in court to give Gi-yeong a better life. The episode is now streaming on Netflix.


Sung-han pays Chairman Seo a visit and tells him that Ms. Ma is only divorcing him to secure Gi-yeong’s share in the company. He tells him to give her the share and stay married to her, as he does not want her to make a sacrifice to protect Gi-yeong.

He reveals to Chairman Seo that his endgame is to file for the termination of Jeong-guk’s parental rights over Gi-yeong, regardless of Chairman Seo’s divorce. 

Chairman Seo decides to give Ms. Ma her share and not divorce her, but his team of lawyers will fight Sung-han in Gi-yeong’s case. Gi-yeong refuses to tell Jeong-guk what he said to Sung-han. 

On the other hand, Seo-jin is conflicted about taking the job at the radio because she knows it is a hard time for Sung-han and that he needs her.

Yu-seok gets the cafe that he wanted and considers it his severance pay. Sung-han figures out that Yu-seok was trying to threaten Yeong-ju by coming to meet Jeong-sik, and he got what he wanted from her.

Choi Jun is struggling to get Jun-hui child support because those cases take years in court. Jun-hui’s mother stole her mother-in-law’s recipe and started a franchise with her second husband. Sung-han advises him to hit Jun-hui’s mother where it will hurt her.

Chairman Seo thinks that Sung-han wants Gi-yeong for his inheritance, but Ms. Ma tells him that Sung-han agreed to negotiate with Chairman Seo on the condition that Ms. Ma would not give Gi-yeong her share. 

Earlier, she was divorcing him for Gi-yeong’s sake, but now she truly wants to divorce him. She tells Chairman Seo that she will be going ahead with the divorce. 

Choi Jun meets Jun-hui’s mother and stepfather. He brings along a childhood picture of hers and threatens to hold a protest outside their restaurant. He also plans to file a lawsuit for the ownership of the recipe.

He tells them that he will send this story to Seo-jin’s popular show to inform the restaurant’s customers about their deeds. This would affect their business, so Jun-hui’s mother agrees to pay child support as well as the overdue payments.

Sung-han meets Gi-yeong to explain to him that he will be very rich if he continues living with his father. However, if he chooses to live with Sung-han, he will have just enough to complete his education and get married, and Gi-yeong still wants to live with Sung-han.

In court, Sung-han presents Gi-yeong’s psychiatric diagnosis and gets Mr. Jung to testify to prove that Gi-yeong is suffering from a severe case of child depression because Yeong-ju failed to get him help in time, even though she was told about it. 

He highlights how Mr. Jung, who spent more time with Gi-yeong than his own father, and Sung-han were separated from him. Gi-yeong is suffering because of his parents’ indifference and bad decisions.

Directo gets Gi-yeong’s new driver to lie in court about Gi-yeong taking her permission to see Sung-han to prove that he did not run to Sung-han because he was disturbed and unhappy. However, Sung-han proves that she is lying by showing the CCTV footage of Gi-yeong’s classroom. 

Gi-yeong’s eating habits are also discussed in court. Sung-han once again proves that Gi-yeong has been binge eating because he has not been well.

Yu-seok is also called to court to testify. Before he goes in, Jeong-sik tells him that this is his last chance to come clean and live decently, but he dismisses him. 

In court, Sung-han questions him about giving Ju-hwa’s psychiatric records because of which she lost Gi-yeong’s custody to Jeong-guk’s lawyers. Yu-seok denies even knowing about these records and breaking the law.

Sung-han also questions him about receiving the cafe as severance pay, which is much higher than what attorneys who are much better than him at Keumhwa are given. Yu-seok still does not budge, and Sung-han fails to prove that he was bribed by Yeong-ju.

Jeong-guk’s lawyer then attacks Sung-han and questions his ability to raise Gi-yeong better than his father. The court decides to send a custody inspector to Gi-yeong’s house and interview him before the next trial.

Sung-han is stressed and upset because the case is difficult to win. Jeong-sik sells his car and tries to pay Yu-seok in exchange for telling the truth in court, but Yu-seok declines. 

Jeong-sik tells Sung-han about it, but Sung-han is mad at him; he is just upset. Sung-han cries with his friends. Sung-han meets Jeong-guk and asks him how can he call himself a good father. He also mentions Yeong-ju’s phone call that killed Ju-hwa.

Ms. Kim is closing the ramen restaurant and going to Europe for two months. Additionally, Ho-young, who holds herself responsible for what happened to Seo-jin, meets Sung-han and tells him that Seo-jin is not taking the radio job because she wants to support him.

Seo-jin receives hate comments while she is hosting her live show. She refuses to end the show because Hyeon-u had asked her to not be deterred by haters. She stands up for herself and insults the hater in turn. 

Later, Sung-han also encourages her to take the job at the radio station and go back to being a DJ. She wishes him good luck, as he is going to fight again in court the next day.

Divorce Attorney Shin season 1 ending explained in detail:

Does Jeong-guk testify in court?

At the next session of the trial, Jeong-guk’s lawyer points out that there is not an adequate reason for the termination of his parental rights. 

Sung-han argues that a child needs love and support in life, which Gi-yeong has not been receiving; he had given the same reason to Ms. Ma when she had asked him about fighting this case.

He implores the court and Jeong-guk to think about Gi-yeong’s feelings and what he wants. Jeong-guk had earlier asked Ms. Ma about what Yeong-ju had said to Ju-hwa before her death.

Ms. Ma had not told anyone about the phone call, but she finally told him that Yeong-ju had threatened to make Gi-yeong suffer and rob him of his share in the company if Ju-hwa did not get out of his life.

Jeong-guk had refused to answer Sung-han’s questions in court, but after this, he agrees to be questioned, much to Sung-han’s relief and Yeong-ju’s disappointment. 

Is Yu-seok’s crime exposed?

Sung-han asks Jeong-guk about Ju-hwa’s psychiatric reports, and Jeong-guk admits that he retrieved them. He also tells the court that Yu-seok had told him about Ju-hwa’s reports, proving that Yu-seok was bribed, and that is why Ju-hwa lost Gi-yeong’s custody.

Sung-han asks him what would happen to Gi-yeong if he found out about his father’s actions one day; the things that he did to take his custody from Ju-hwa, his biological mother.

He also asks Jeong-guk if this is a suitable family environment for Gi-yeong. Jeong-guk is left speechless, but Ms. Ma approves of him finally doing the right thing. 

What is the court’s decision?

The court decides to limit Jeong-guk’s parental rights over Gi-yeong, and Sung-han is declared his legal guardian. Sung-han gets the right to protect, educate, designate residence, and discipline Gi-yeong, along with other rights regarding his custody.

Sung-han is told his duties, and then he goes to pick Gi-yeong up. Gi-yeong is finally happy. He starts living with Sung-han, and the two are happy together. 

What happens to everyone else?

Since the trial is over, Hyeong-geun decides to accompany Ms. Kim to Europe, and Seo-jin returns to the radio. Sung-han also helps Ms. Ma get divorced; she seems much happier now.

Meanwhile, Jeong-guk refuses to speak to Yeong-ju. He is willing to live with her only because they have a daughter. He deliberately asked for his rights to be limited and not terminated because then Gi-yeong would not have had a share in the company. 

Now that their secret is out, Yeong-ju no longer needs to bribe Yu-seok with the cafe. Yu-seok is seen crying out in frustration because he lost the cafe. At the end of it all, Sung-han enjoys a bottle of wine, but not without his two best friends.


  • The finale ends on a positive note for the good characters. Their issues get resolved, and they all move on in life, leaving their past burdens behind. It was a predictable finale but enjoyable nonetheless. However, the ending did seem a little rushed.
  • In this episode, Sung-han finally cries in front of his friends. With the fear of losing Gi-yeong looming over his head, the scene feels cathartic. It is a scene that needed to be in the finale.
  • The case in the episode seems worthy of the finale; it had just the right amount of tension. The dialogues, gestures, music, and timing were used judiciously to create suspense and evoke emotions.
  • The director made good use of the space in the courtroom to depict that Sung-han is all alone in his fight against a powerful family. That changes when Ms. Ma enters the scene and sides with him.
Divorce Attorney Shin season 1 episode 12
Divorce Attorney Shin season 1 finale recap, review & ending explained 1

Director: Lee Jae-hoon

Date Created: 2023-04-10 00:29

Editor's Rating:

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