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Japan: Supreme Court Ruling on Liability of Kin of Elderly with Dementia

(Apr. 26, 2016) On March 1, 2016, Japan’s Supreme Court ruled on the liability of the family of a dementia sufferer who was struck and killed by a train to pay damages to the Central Japan Railway Company.  (2014(Ju)1434 (S. Ct., 3rd petty bench, Mar. 1, 2016), COURTS IN JAPAN (click pdf icon to view) (in […]

Japan: Baseball Player Arrested After Two Bullets Found in Bag

(Apr. 4, 2016) Former Major League Baseball player Yamaico Navarro, who currently plays for Japan’s Lotte Marines, was arrested on February 21, 2016, at an airport in Japan for possession of two bullets in his luggage. The bullets were discovered in his shoulder bag during a security check at the airport in Okinawa. (Yamaico Navarro […]

Japan: New Instructions Allow Women to Remarry 100 Days After Divorce

(Feb. 26, 2016) Currently, article 733 of Japan’s Civil Code states that women cannot remarry until six months after a divorce. (Civil Code (Part IV and Part V) (tentative translation), Act No. 89 of 1896, art. 733, Japanese Law Translation website.) This provision aims to avoid uncertainty regarding the identity of the legally presumed father […]

Japan: Supreme Court States Family Name System Constitutional

(Jan. 8, 2016) On December 16, 2015, the Japanese Supreme Court held that a Civil Code provision that requires one partner of a married couple, which in practice is nearly always the female partner, to change his/her surname to that of the other partner does not violate the relevant provisions of the Constitution. (Case No. […]

Japan: Communist Party Accepts Emperor’s Speech at Opening Ceremony of the Diet as Constitutional

(Jan. 4, 2016) Kazuo Shii, Japan’s Communist Party (JCP) Secretary, met with Tadamori Oshima, Speaker of the House of Representatives, on December 24, 2015, and informed the speaker that JCP members would attend the next opening ceremony of the House. Shii also requested on behalf of the JCP that the ceremony be reformed. (Norihisa Hoshino, […]

Japan: Bar Association Guidelines for Defense Counsel in Death Penalty Cases

(Nov. 27, 2015) The Japan Federation of Bar Associations (JFBA) created Guidelines for Defense Counsel in Death Penalty Cases and sent them to local bar associations throughout Japan in October 2015. (Guidelines Exclusively for Capital Defense, JFBA “Special Defense Required,” NIKKEI (Oct. 19, 2015) (in Japanese).) The guidelines are modeled after the American Bar Association […]

Japan: New Wine Labeling Regulation

(Nov. 4, 2015) Japan did not previously have regulations on the labeling of wine made from grapes, except for the industry’s own regulations. As more wine is drunk in Japan and more domestic manufacturers make wines, clearer regulations have been sought by consumers. (Alcohol Tax Division, 16th Meeting Minutes (June 17, 2015), National Tax Council […]

Japan: Current State of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Regulation

(Oct. 6, 2015) When a small drone was discovered on the roof of the Japanese Prime Minister’s office building in Tokyo on April 22, 2015, there was no effective regulation in place to prohibit the act of flying such a device. (UPDATE: Radiation Detected on Drone Found on Roof of Prime Minister’s Office, ASAHI SHIMBUN […]

Japan: Active Volcanoes Special Measures Act Amended

(Sept. 11, 2015) In September 2014, Mt. Ontake, located in central Japan, erupted and resulted in the loss of 57 lives. (Mount Ontake Volcanic Eruption, NHK World (Oct. 27, 2014).) Experts called for improved measures for managing government reactions to eruptions. (Id.) In response, the government discussed enhanced countermeasures. (Disaster Management in Japan, Cabinet Office […]