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Dual citizenship is not permitted under Japanese law, making the country an international minority over the issue. What do you think are the benefits of allowing dual citizenship?

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Zero benefits from the country's perspective. Originally people were supposed to make a choice of one nationality by adulthood. But so many people didn't bother doing it, that governments cant enforce the rule anymore.

Having a couple of passports or more benefits tax-avoiders, fugitives, criminals, terrorists, money launderers..That's about it. No one has the "right" to more than one passport.

-38 ( +5 / -43 )

Zero benefits from the country's perspective.

Does the country exist to serve the people, or do the people exist to serve the country?

No one has the "right" to more than one passport.

Why not?

32 ( +35 / -3 )

Well since mixed Japanese arent accepted as real Japanese its fair to give them their "hafu".

It will also promote individual rights as you are able to choose who you are i stead of a nation choosing for you.

It will be more realistic and make easier living for International families.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

Its simple, its representation, both politically and as a reflection of the make up of the populace... and nearly 2017 for goodness sake.

If permanent residents were extended rights closer to that of citizenship it wouldn't be such an issue however given that Japanese permanent residency is more like a work visa with various limitations its a problem.

Should someone live here say, 10-20-50 years and have no say or voice in what happens to their contribution to the country, less access to services, I certainly don't think so.

People may say choose, but that doesn't represent the reality of someone not born here the need to visit their birth country for any number of reasons, nor the birthright of children of mixed heritage to explore or have opportunities in their parents birth country.

While the current government is seemingly heading in the opposite direction, the world is happening regardless, to assume in any country that you know anything about a person by the way they look or where they happen to have been born is out of date.

As for JeffLee's comments, what benefit does it have for the country?

Japan has a drastically aging population and falling birthrate, at some point this is going to cause massive problems for the economy and the health of the country, would you rather have intelligent, educated people helping to grow business? Well right to work and travel without restriction and vote are important to these kinds of people, as well as the ability to visit their birth country. Or.. where I fear we are heading a desperate immigration policy that accepts anyone that is willing to work for 900yen an hour. Simply, reasonable policies make Japan more attractive.

As for the accusation about people with multiple passports being for criminals, I have no idea what you are talking about, we don't live in a spy movie. I agree people should be paying their fair share tax wise but the only way to not pay is to be involved in illegal employment or payment, which has nothing to do with which or how many passports you have...

19 ( +20 / -1 )

NZ2011, very well put.

Allowing/recognising dual citizenship is merely a reflection of the way things are. It shouldn't even be an issue.

19 ( +20 / -1 )

"Does the country exist to serve the people,"

The country's administrators have a much more difficult time serving the people - such as securing public safety or fairly and uniformly allocating public resources - when large numbers of the people are holding a mishmash of documents issued by a variety of different authorities around the world, which are usually undisclosed to the authorities. That much is obvious.

"No one has the "right" -- Why not?"

Because billions of other people throughout the world are denied the "right" (correct word is "privilege"), and that's got nothing to do with personal merit or achievement. Ergo, it's an unfair and discriminatory practice.

-30 ( +2 / -32 )

The country's administrators have a much more difficult time serving the people - such as securing public safety or fairly and uniformly allocating public resources - when large numbers of the people are holding a mishmash of documents issued by a variety of different authorities around the world, which are usually undisclosed to the authorities.

So the people's right should be limited because it's a headache for the country?

18 ( +18 / -0 )

What do I think are the benefits of allowing dual citizenship?

well, for one, you don't force people give up a part of their identity, which is exactly what having a citizenship is.

19 ( +23 / -4 )

JeffLee

Sorry dual citizenship is not a "mishmash of documents" in complete confusion with a bunch of criminals as you seem to imply. A passport is a sophisticated and uncomplicated thing. And it's also what we are talking about.

21 ( +22 / -1 )

Japan needs to allow this, it's just stupid and backward.

21 ( +22 / -1 )

Because a single passport is not working for Japan anymore. Japan can grow fast if it allows dual-citizenship along with open borders to workers; it's the only solution for Japan.

12 ( +12 / -0 )

Dual citizenship is not permitted under Japanese law

Really?

国籍法

Nationality Act

第五条2 法務大臣は、外国人がその意思にかかわらずその国籍を失うことができない場合において、日本国民との親族関係又は境遇につき特別の事情があると認めるときは、その者が前項第五号に掲げる条件を備えないときでも、帰化を許可することができる。

Article 5(2) In cases where despite the foreign national's intention, he/she is unable to give up his/her nationality, the Minister of Justice may permit naturalization if special circumstances are found concerning a familial relationship or circumstances with a Japanese citizen even if that foreign national has not met the conditions listed in the preceding paragraph, item (v).

The law explicitly allows dual nationality in certain cases. This is the clause for you, Aly.

There were 677,019 permanent residents and special permanent residents in Japan.

People's Republic of China consists 215,155 of them, followed by the Philippines 115,857, Brazil 111,077, Koreas 65,711, Peru 33,496, Thailand 18,273, Taiwan 16,870, and others 100,580. PRC-Japan dual citizenship or North Korea-Japan dual citizenship may cause serious conflict of interest.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Japan is going to run into an exodus when the bills are due so dual is the only way to increase residents, who will pay taxes, rather than losing that revenue. Frankly by then I wonder how many would bother anyway given the deplorable working conditions and future tax burden. This is all probably a moot issue in Japan.

In Canada we allow multiple citizenships. If you ever want to join the team, we're willing to give it a go. Citizens make a commitment to the country. Being a world citizen is a benefit to the nation. Standards and expectations go up.

16 ( +16 / -0 )

I mean there were 677,019 permanent residents and special permanent residents in Japan at the end of 2014.

If we allow permanent residents to naturalize while keeping their existing nationality, we will have a lot of PRC-Japan dual nationals.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

That's about it. No one has the "right" to more than one passport. that's like saying you can be born dual race/nationality but arent allowed to be a part of that race/national. ridiculous!!. People born of dual nationality have the RIGHT & PRIVELAGE of staying a part of both. Forcing people to give up one for the other is just plain discrimination. What many fail to understand is that the marriage and procreation of mixed race/nationalities actually brings those groups closer together not trying to segregate them as some countries are desperate to do.

15 ( +15 / -0 )

I am sorry again. 677,019 was the number of permanent residents only. There were 358,409 special permanent residents in addition to them at the and of 2014. Special permanent residents are mostly from Koreas.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

When a baby is born into the world, their "citizenship" is not stamped on their forehead, nor visible in their fingerprints.

A citizenship/passport is a government conception that provides benefits only for governments which have arbitrarily drawn up borders here and there, and want to manage their citizens like a farmer herds sheep.

People used to have the freedom to roam the earth as they pleased.

There is no harm for individuals in having two citizenships, but if the government of one of them goes rogue, having that second citizenship could be really helpful.

That said, I fortunately have what I consider a very free and good citizenship, so do not crave another one. Having residency status in Japan is sufficient, I find.

As for JeffLee's comments, what benefit does it have for the country?

He stated it benefits "tax-avoiders", and while tax avoidance is legal in the first place, I'm not sure how having two citizenships aids it (or tax evasion even). Besides the USA and Eritrea, tax systems are based on residency, not citizenship. (If I were a US citizen I would see a benefit of ditching it for a Japanese one)

The extra passport may be useful for "criminals" (Edward Snowden could have used one), but if you trust your government then you're OK.

Simply, reasonable policies make Japan more attractive.

Yes, I think the real disincentives to living here are more in the taxation system than the citizenship thing though - the inheritance taxes are horrid and immoral. My parents (living overseas all their lives) don't want to see what assets they are able to leave to me and my offspring being confiscated by the Japanese government once they are gone. Nor do I, so I'm planning to stipulate that my siblings receive any taxable inheritance instead of me. It's a lose for me, and a lose for Japan (as that money won't ever be spent here).

(The Japanese government is also clamping down on inheritance tax avoidance by changing the rules about how long the parties involved must reside outside Japan before becoming exempt, but I'm skeptical about the degree to which they'll be able to enforce it, once those seeking to leave are already gone... Rather than waste tax payer money pursuing this, they should abolish these taxes.)

7 ( +7 / -0 )

People born of dual nationality have the RIGHT & PRIVELAGE of staying a part of both.

I wonder why this sounds plain discrimination agaisnt those who were not born as such

-7 ( +3 / -10 )

I really wish Japan had dual nationality, and I think it would be in their interest to allow it. But that all said, it's their right to decide whether or not they want to allow it. I disagree with their policy of discouraging it to the point that it's pretty much not allowed, but it's their right to do so.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

I think there was a long, heated discussion on this a few weeks ago.

The fact is, having multiple nationalities is not illegal in Japan. There is no punishment for being a dual national and no legal way for the government to force dual nationals to give up their non-Japanese passport.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

no legal way for the government to force dual nationals to give up their non-Japanese passport.

They can however revoke the Japanese citizenship.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

One benefit to the country of allowing dual nationality is surely that a person with two or more passports is hardly likely to support one of his countries going to war against the other.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

There are no benefits.

You're either a person from one country, or none at all. No benefits at all to dual citizenship.

Look at all these recent 'immigrants' flooding the shores of Europe and America. They care nothing about the country they 'immigrate' to. So what's the point of dual citizenship? Zero benefits to society or to the individual from any practical standpoint.

-13 ( +3 / -16 )

Should someone live here say, 10-20-50 years and have no say or voice in what happens to their contribution to the country, less access to services, I certainly don't think so.

Just curious NZ2011, but what services are denied to permanent residents that they should be entitled to or are entitled to elsewhere?

As far as "voice", the option to hold public office/employment, enroll in armed forces, vote... one would say that a stated allegiance to a country would be a pre-requisite for these things, and maintaining a stated allegiance to a different country would obviously create a conflict of interest.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

For me, having the right to vote in Japan would be about as good as having the choice of Trump or Clinton for POTUS.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Why should it be about 'benefiting' someone (country or individual)?

Imo in some circumstances and for some people it's just 'the right thing' to do.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

If allowed,I would have preferred dual citizenship as whenever I have to go back to India I have to get visa which costs me money and time.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

The law explicitly allows dual nationality in certain cases. This is the clause for you, Aly.

IN CERTAIN CASES. You said it.

Sure. They can, in theory, allow ANYONE to get J-citizenship with or without relinqushment of the other citizenship. The REALITY is that if I were to naturalize and not give up my other passports, the J-gov is well within their power AND right to strip me of my J-nationality for the SOLE reason of not giving up my other citizenship as strangerland explained as well.

If we allow permanent residents to naturalize while keeping their existing nationality, we will have a lot of PRC-Japan dual nationals.

WRONG. China, like Japan and India, does not allow dual citizenship, so any chinese wanting to naturalize will be forced to give up their chinese citizenship.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

this dual citizenship discussion is kinda nonsense. cos you have two countries with two different immigration laws. under two different jurisdictions.

most countries have following law, when you born to parents of that country you will get their citizenship. you will never ever loose this under their law.

just take up the new citizenship and keep your old one, different law jurisdiction doesnt allow another country to force you to give up your birth citizenship. plain and simple!! my girl friend for example got 3 different citizenships and i got two. learn about the word: jurisdiction! you dont have to tell nobody whats going on in a different country where different law applies... and those two countries do not communicate cos its a different JURISDICTION!!!

3 ( +4 / -1 )

different law jurisdiction doesnt allow another country to force you to give up your birth citizenship.

No, but they can revoke the citizenship for their country.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Aly RustomOCT. 18, 2016 - 12:37PM JST

The REALITY is that if I were to naturalize and not give up my other passports, the J-gov is well within their power AND right to strip me of my J-nationality for the SOLE reason of not giving up my other citizenship as strangerland explained as well.

Will you stop spreading that misinformation any more?

If you insist, cite the pertinent law. What is the legal process for stripping the Japanese nationality? Who can strip the nationality, the court, the minister, or someone else? You, or stragerland cannot answer any of these questions, because there is no law that the Japanese government can strip Japanese nationality solely because the person does not give up other nationalities.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

Will you stop spreading that misinformation any more?

Its not misinformation. You are the one that needs to read up more about the law.

If you insist, cite the pertinent law. What is the legal process for stripping the Japanese nationality? Who can strip the nationality, the court, the minister, or someone else You, or stragerland cannot answer any of these questions, because there is no law that the Japanese government can strip Japanese nationality solely because the person does not give up other nationalities.

Under the revisions made to the Nationality Law in 1985, Articles 14 and 15 require any person who holds multiple citizenship to make a "declaration of choice" between the ages of 20 and 22, in which they choose to renounce either their Japanese nationality or their foreign citizenship(s). Failure to do so entitles the Minister of Justice to demand a declaration of choice at any time. If the required declaration is not made within one month, their Japanese nationality is automatically revoked. A renunciation of foreign citizenship made before Japanese officials may be considered by a foreign state as having no legal effect as is the case with, for example, United States citizenship.[8]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_nationality_law

There you are. Read. Learn.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Japan should freely allow Japanese citizens to also retain any other citizenship they were born with, without having to make any choice. Under the current rules, some people will choose the other nationality unnecessarily, with the result that Japan unnecesarily 'loses' people with a very close affinity to Japan, and who would have been happy to remain Japanese (as well as the other nationality). The fact that people choosing Japanese citizenship are required to 'make efforts' to lose the other nationality creates unnecessary confusion and stress. Even in the segment of the law quoted above:

In cases where despite the foreign national's intention, he/she is unable to give up his/her nationality,

the person has to have the 'intention' of losing the other nationality. So what happens of no efforts are made, and there is no intention of losing the other nationality? Unclear, perhaps deliberately so. But the risk/threat of losing Japanese nationality is clearly there, on the grounds of non-adherence with the requirements of the Japanese government in choosing Japanese nationality exclusively.

I would extend the same rights to naturalising 'special permanent residents', allowing them to keep their original nationality while obtaining Japanese nationality. If the original country, i.e. PRC, does not allow this, that is not a matter for Japan to concern itself with.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

If we allow permanent residents to naturalize while keeping their existing nationality, we will have a lot of PRC-Japan dual nationals.

How would that be a bad thing?

10 ( +10 / -0 )

@CH3

It's not a question of the government "stripping" anybody of Japanese nationality.

It's that when a person applies for Japanese citizenship, they have to agree to undertake to make "reasonable efforts" to renounce all previous citizenships. If they do agree, but do nothing, their agreement is technically a false statement, which renders the whole application null and void.

All theoretical and technical, but enough to lose citizenship if anybody in authority chooses to interfere.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

more citizens = more taxpayers

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Aly RustomOCT. 18, 2016 - 01:31PM JST

You cited a Wikipedia article. I read it. It did not say anywhere that Japanese government can strip Japanese citizenship from a naturalized Japanese.

lucabrasiOCT. 18, 2016 - 01:39PM JST

If they do agree, but do nothing, their agreement is technically a false statement, which renders the whole application null and void.

All theoretical and technical, but enough to lose citizenship if anybody in authority chooses to interfere.

If one agrees to make reasonable efforts to lose other nationalities at the moment of filing of naturalization, naturalization itself is valid. Once naturalized, the citizenship is as good as that of a native citizen. There is no law for the government to strip Japanese nationality, even if he fails to accomplish his promise. He may be in default, but there is no penalty for the default.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

CH:

Your use of the word 'naturalization' is not appropriate in the case of a person born Japanese who is also born a national of another country, which is what most of us are talking about. Also, how do you know how the Japanese government would react on learning that such a person had selected to be Japanese exclusively under the requirement to choose, but had made no efforts to lose the other nationality and may have had no intention to do so. As Luca says, that person could be argued by the Japanese authorities to have not made the choice to be Japanese in good faith. It would be logical therefore to remove that person's Japanese nationality if the authorities took that view. It may never have happened, but if the choice of Japanese nationality was deemed invalid, the status can be removed.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

As someone with multiple citizenships, one thing I would point out is that even if someone is forced to renounce their nationality, most are actually incredibly easy to regain if you received them by virtue of your birthplace or parent's nationality. So the argument that people should be restricted to only one nationality is a bit silly when you realise that most former dual nationals would still be able to pick and choose their citizenship at any given time (even if they couldn't hold them all at the same time).

The other thing that's rarely mentioned is that some countries go half way. In Spain, natural born citizens can acquire as many other nationalities as they want, but naturalised Spanish citizens must give up their foreign nationality and are not allowed to acquire any others. This might be a good first step for a country like Japan but it would probably be unconstitutional to create two classes of citizenship like this.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

theeastisredOCT. 18, 2016 - 02:35PM JST

Your use of the word 'naturalization' is not appropriate in the case of a person born Japanese who is also born a national of another country, which is what most of us are talking about.

I think we are talking about naturalization. See Aly RustomOCT. 18, 2016 - 12:37PM JST, theeastisredOCT. 18, 2016 - 01:31PM JST, cleoOCT. 18, 2016 - 01:34PM JST, lucabrasiOCT. 18, 2016 - 01:39PM JST.

Also, how do you know how the Japanese government would react on learning that such a person had selected to be Japanese exclusively under the requirement to choose, but had made no efforts to lose the other nationality and may have had no intention to do so.

Their hands are tied. The government of Japan cannot strip Japanese citizenship unless there is a law for it.

It may never have happened, but if the choice of Japanese nationality was deemed invalid, the status can be removed.

So, just cite the pertinent law.

Let me clarify my point since the discussion got too long. My point is that the following comment is not true.

The REALITY is that if I were to naturalize and not give up my other passports, the J-gov is well within their power AND right to strip me of my J-nationality for the SOLE reason of not giving up my other citizenship as strangerland explained as well.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

I read it. It did not say anywhere that Japanese government can strip Japanese citizenship from a naturalized Japanese

Yes it did. right here:

Failure to do so entitles the Minister of Justice to demand a declaration of choice at any time. If the required declaration is not made within one month, their Japanese nationality is automatically revoked.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Zero benefits immigrants from certain countries will use Japan as a passport of convenience this has already been proven with dual citizenship countries that have seen people gain dual passports then head back to the country they came from get into trouble and expect their new country to bail them out - Don't do it Japan.

-10 ( +1 / -11 )

As you have commented numerous times, if a person is required to choose Japanese nationality or not, and does not choose Japanese nationality, then the person can have their Japanese nationality removed.

If the person does choose Japanese nationality but does not comply with the requirement to rescind the other nationality, or makes no efforts to do so, or never had any intention to do so, I believe there is a serious risk that the declaration of Japanese nationality would be considered fraudulent and therefore invalidated. The person would then be in the same situation as one who had not selected Japanese nationality and therefore in a position to have his/her Japanese nationality revoked.

You are telling us that you know for a fact the Japanese government would never consider such a declaration to be fraudulent, and that therefore the person's Japanese nationality is not in any danger regardless of what actions are taken or not taken after initially declaring Japanese nationality. My argument is that you do not and cannot know that.

Again, I am not talking about a person becoming a naturalised Japanese citizen, but rather one who was born both Japanese and another nationality.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Aly RustomOCT. 18, 2016 - 03:00PM JST

their Japanese nationality is automatically revoked.

First of all, that clause has nothing to do with naturalization into Japan. Second of all, one should choose Japanese nationality by turning in 国籍選択届 kokusekisenntakutodoke, to avoid loss of Japanese nationality. The loss of Japanese nationality is not because one kept other nationalities, but because one failed to maintain Japanese nationality by turning in the piece of paper. Once the kokusekisenntakutodoke is turned in, Japanese government cannot strip Japanese nationality.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Don't see why not. If one is of mixed parentage and born in a country or later brought up there I can see how all of those might allow you to take a passport. and why you might be proud of your multiple nationalities.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@theeastirsred... damn you id is so difficult....

Sorry to burst your rage bubble... but Ch3cho is right. You need proof? Here I am.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

First of all, that clause has nothing to do with naturalization into Japan.

It has to do with ANYONE who has Japanese and another citizenship

Second of all, one should choose Japanese nationality by turning in 国籍選択届 kokusekisenntakutodoke, to avoid loss of Japanese nationality.

So you just admitted that one CAN have their citizenship revoked.

The loss of Japanese nationality is not because one kept other nationalities, but because one failed to maintain Japanese nationality by turning in the piece of paper. Once the kokusekisenntakutodoke is turned in, Japanese government cannot strip Japanese nationality.

No. It is due to the fact that they did not make a choice. Here is the quote again:

Articles 14 and 15 require any person who holds multiple citizenship to make a "declaration of choice" between the ages of 20 and 22, in which they choose to renounce either their Japanese nationality or their foreign citizenship(s).

So they HAVE TO make a choice.

Failure to do so entitles the Minister of Justice to demand a declaration of choice at any time. If the required declaration is not made within one month, their Japanese nationality is automatically revoked

Of course the Justice Minister can choose to ignore it, he/ she CAN revoke Japanese citizenship AT ANY TIME as long as the individual has another citizenship and for that reason.

I'm sorry, but the article is clear. Very clear. Not everyone who has dual citizenship will have their J citizenship revoked, but the Minister of Justice has the right at any time to demand that a Japanese citizen renounce other citizenships or strip them of their Japanese one. Not saying that's what happens, but it is within the power of the Justice Minister to do so

4 ( +7 / -3 )

No rage, no bubble. Even if a person has selected Japanese nationality and done nothing to revoke whatever other nationality they may have had, and the Japanese government has shown no further interest, that is not 'proof' of anything. Until the rules are changed and requirement to choose removed, the risk is there. See what happens when you are arrested for a drugs offence in Japan, for example.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Aly RustomOCT. 18, 2016 - 03:49PM JST

Aly, you wrote you were applying for naturalization into Japan. I think you need to understand the laws. You are blinded by your half truth. If you cannot believe in truth here no matter what, see a lawyer.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

@theeastisred I think you lack of knowledge of international and constitutional law is making you say this.

By law and by all effects I have chosen and fore I am Japanese national. At the same time, according to the constitution of the country which I hold my second nationality, its states in essence that I cannot lose or "drop" my nationality no matter what I do, even if it is my will to drop the nationality.. the nationality will stay with me.

According to international law no country can interfere nor affect the constitution of another country. And since Japan is a democracy and respects human rights, a government and/or country cannot force a person to go against their wishes, in this case, choosing one nationality over the other.

Ch3cho already stated in a comment above that there is an article regarding special situations.

So you see.. it is stated, and it is rather a common thing.

Japan does not remove or take away the Japanese nationality once it has been provided. The only way to "loose" the Japanese nationality is by notifying that you want to loose the Japanese nationality in order to get another nation nationality (most commonly speaking US citizenship)

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

@CH3CHO

Just to flesh out your idea, imagine that the minister of justice granted citizenship to someone who had only been living in Japan for a year (either because of incompetence or as a favour for a friend), are you suggesting that the minister's act of granting citizenship to a person who did not satisfy the legal requirements to become a citizen could not be declared a nullity by the courts? Do you think a person becomes a citizen simply once a decree is made by the minister? Doesn't it take actual compliance with the various laws, ministerial ordinances and cabinet orders for the excercise of the minister's power to comply with Article 10 of the Constitution (and thus be legally valid)?

Also, I'm guessing you've looked this up so can you tell me what the law actually says when it comes to making an effort to renounce your old citizenship. Specifically, does the wording actually require you to make the effort (in which case the actual effort you make is reviewable by the courts), or does it merely say that the minister must be satisfied that you have made an effort (in which case only the minister's satisfaction would be open to review). Thanks.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Dani:

according to the constitution of the country which I hold my second nationality, its states in essence that I cannot lose or "drop" my nationality no matter what I do, even if it is my will to drop the nationality.. the nationality will stay with me.

OK, so in your case, your Japanese nationality is safe, I agree. I was talking about where somebody's 'other' nationality is not like yours, in that the person can revoke it if they wish to. That person would be at risk in the way and for the reasons I have described.

Japan does not remove or take away the Japanese nationality once it has been provided.

Not talking about cases where Japanese nationality had been 'provided' but rather where the person was born with it.

The only way to "loose" the Japanese nationality is by notifying that you want to loose the Japanese nationality in order to get another nation nationality

If the person opts to lose Japanese nationality, it would immediately expire of course. The discussion is about a person who on the other hand opted to keep Japanese nationality but nevertheless did not fulfill the requirements to at least make efforts to revoke the other nationality, and perhaps never intended to do so. The failure to comply with this requirement could be seen as not having made the selection in good faith, and therefore not having in fact selected Japanese nationality properly. That person is at risk of losing their Japanese nationality.

I agree that this is all unclear, and you and CH may be right about the intentions of the Japanese government in such circumstances. But nothing either of you has quoted can prove for sure that there is no reason for a person in that situation to worry. I don't think it is safe to rely entirely on the goodwill of future Japanese governments in all possible future scenarios regarding this topic.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Don't tell the government, what they don't know won't hurt them and it's damn easy to hide the fact you have dual nationality.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Don't tell the government, what they don't know won't hurt them and it's damn easy to hide the fact you have dual nationality.

When applying for a new Japanese passport though, you have to answer Yes or No to whether you have any other nationality. So you can't hide it, actually.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Aly, you wrote you were applying for naturalization into Japan.

No I didn't. I said I looked into it

I think you need to understand the laws. You are blinded by your half truth. If you cannot believe in truth here no matter what, see a lawyer.

I would say the EXACT same thing to you.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

M3M3M3OCT. 18, 2016 - 04:42PM JST

can you tell me what the law actually says when it comes to making an effort to renounce your old citizenship.

In naturalization process, look up Article 5 (2) of Nationality Act which I quoted in my first comment on this thread. Usually, one has to renounce all other nationalities before naturalization into Japan. But in case where the foreign government does not allow its citizens to renounce nationality, as in the case of Aly, Minister of Justice of Japan can allow naturalization without renouncing the other nationality. Since the Minister of Justice allowed naturalization with full knowledge of the fact that the other nationality cannot be renounced, it is ridiculous to argue that the minister can revoke the Japanese nationality if the other nationality is not renounced.

In choice of nationality process, Article 16 stipulates the obligation of a Japanese national who chose Japanese citizenship (who made selection declaration) by turning in kokusekisenntakutodoke.

第十六条 選択の宣言をした日本国民は、外国の国籍の離脱に努めなければならない。

Article 16 (1) A Japanese citizen who makes the selection declaration shall endeavor to renounce his/her foreign nationality.

There is no penalty clause for failing to "endeavor to renounce foreign nationality."

To know more about the Nationality Act, see the government translation of the act. http://www.japaneselawtranslation.go.jp/law/detail/?ft=1&re=01&dn=1&x=0&y=0&co=01&ia=03&ky=%E5%9B%BD%E7%B1%8D%E6%B3%95&page=1

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@CH3CHO

Thanks for the clarification and the quotes. However, I think what you might be missing is that the Minister of Justice cannot naturalise someone who he has no legal power to naturalise. Any attempt to do this would be what lawyers call 'ultra vires' and would result in a void nullity with no legal effect. Stripping someone of citizenship does not enter into this because you cannot strip someone of something which they never legally possessed in the first place (even if they were erroneously sent a naturalisation decree letter and issued with a passport).

So what is the extent of the Minister's power to naturalise? According to the law, it's to naturalise only those who meet every single requirement applicable to them. So, if the Minister decides to naturalises someone who has not made the 'endeavor' to renounce their old citizenship required by Art 16 (whatever that may entail), then the Minister has acted outside of his legal powers and his actions could be declared void. To put it another way, the Minister cannot exercise a power which he doesn't possess.

Yes, the word 'endeavor' and its Japanese equivalent are extremely subjective and open to interpretation (particularly since it doesn't demand that you succeed in renouncing your old nationality). However, if the courts decide that your actions do not satisfy the definition of 'endeavor' that was intended by the Diet when they passed the Nationality Act, then the courts can rule that the Minister exceeded his statutory powers when he purported to grant citizenship to someone who the Minister was not legally entitled to grant citizenship to. His actions are null and void just like any other 'ultra vires' act.

At most, I think it is correct to say that enforcement of the law is patchy and you can probably get away with keeping your old citizenship if you are persistent and lucky enough not to have an over zealous clerk dealing with your application. But to suggest that you don't have to give up your nationality (if this is what the court decides 'endeavor' requires) or that your purported Japanese citizenship is safe once the Minister sends you a decree or passport, is inaccurate.

Interestingly, France has dealt with this issue. They didn't like the idea that it was possible for the courts to nullify someone's citizenship decades later if the government claimed that they didn't actually meet the conditions of citizenship at the time of naturalisation. The law in France now says that citizenship cannot be challenged in the courts if two years have passed since the date of the naturalisation decree.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

The justice minister chastised Renho in the diet for operating in Japan as a foreigner for more than twenty years which against law. If someone who was born here, schooled here, leaved here his/her whole life can be labelled a foreigner just because one of their parents is a foreigner then I wonder how naturalised individuals are viewed. Is it really worth becoming a Japanese, maybe for the chinese or koreans who look just like Japanese I don't think it is for anybody with glaring foreign features.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Trying to tell a person to choose is like asking them to choose who they love more? Their mother or their father! They should have the right to be both and if necessary will stand to protect both countries they are a part of.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

This is very help full for all to be dual citizenship

1 ( +1 / -0 )

This a very negative way of dealing with this issue. Fugitives. Tax avoiders. Why is the media siding with governments taking away peoples' freedom? If I choose to have two or three nationalities it's my choice. Governments aren't here to control people. People create and control governments. If the issue is escaping the law then the governments of the world need to work on A single world ID card. Individuals shouldn't be the pawns between testosterone filled governors pushing their provincial agendas.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

certain comments above are ludicrous...having two passports does not mean being sneeky is any easier. I don't need Japanese citizenship to avoid paying taxes back home. My country of origin recognizes that I am a resident of Japan and am paying my share of taxes over here. Until I return to Canada, I will not have one single obligation toward their budget needs, etc. Best example is to imagine that we (or someone ) is in wartime conditions and needing to flee...got it Lee?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

if you pay your taxes and dont break the law what is the problem ?

japan get me though sometimes, you have an aging population but make it near impossible for people, for people who want to live in japan if they dont have a degree. unless you marry a Japanese person.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I'm a dual citizen of Australia and my blood country of Latvia. I understand where Japan is coming from, but I think you are pushing yound people too far in this sense, specially because it's predominantly about political issues.

You can't honestly tell me that a kid born in Japan, regardless of upbringing, should HAVE to choose. I don't think the government understands the psychological issues and constraints this has on young people.

20 years old? Come on now. I was an idiot back then! I was only just grasping adult life!

Dual citizenship, yes. You must realise how the world opens up with it. You WILL STILL MAINTAIN CULTURE. That's not the issue! The issue is about "Us Vs Them if it comes to it"

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I wonder why this sounds plain discrimination against those who were not born as such oh Ok then people born into wealth shouldn't be allowed to keep their wealth because its discriminates against the poor. that sums up your logic!? There will always be privileged people in societies, from the early tribes of Africa until present day.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

nationalistic

2 ( +3 / -1 )

When applying for a new Japanese passport though, you have to answer Yes or No to whether you have any other nationality. So you can't hide it, actually. yes but if your child was born a Japanese national and holds two passports. if your child chooses to keep the Japanese passport the J government has no legal right to force them to renounce their second passport ( that is the sole right of the country involved) they certainly cant take away their Japanese nationality ( unconstitutional ) and cant send them to prison if they keep their second nationality. There are basic UN human rights that protect citizens from government abuses, well in most democratic free countries anyway. This is the main reason Japan hasnt made laws that make it illegal and punishable to hold a second nationality.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

My kid was born in Japan but I made her a citizen of my country so she has 2 passports.

Now Can anyone tell me if they have revoked J-citizenship ever ?? I have heard some stories of people handing over the wrong passport at the airport and told "I dont want to see that, Give me the other one" or "My son got the form and we threw it in the bin"

3 ( +3 / -0 )

StrangerlandOct. 18, 2016 - 12:46PM JST

different law jurisdiction doesnt allow another country to force you to give up your birth citizenship. No, but they can revoke the citizenship for their country.

this is where the understanding of the word jurisdiction comes in handy. they cannot revoke any citizenship at all, they maybe can make your passport invalid but as soon as you back in your other country you get a new one.... or just visit your embassy in any country to replace your passport... very easy to understand... you cant compare apples with tomatos cos each country got their own jurisdiction and this jurisdiction ends on the border!!!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The purported tax advantage is bunk: Many countries have tax equalization agreements with Japan, and non-citizens in Japan already pay income and consumption taxes here.

Trying to tell a person to choose is like asking them to choose who they love more? Their mother or their father!

This aptly highlights the issue. The advantage of dual nationality is convenience for the dual national. The potential disadvantage is dual allegiances, such as happens when a mother and father divorce. This is why some countries ban dual nationals from positions in the government and military. And I say this as a dual national.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

According to a US guy at the office, it used to be that if a US person took Japanese citizenship, there was a "don't ask, don't tell" policy. But now, if you don't show you have dropped your US citizenship within 2 years, you will lose your Japanese citizenship. Maybe that is the result of rightist Abe and his henchmen.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

nfi:

If your child is over 22, the Japanese government can demand at any time that a declaration be made to confirm Japanese nationality or not. If he or she does not declare for Japan, the Japanese nationality will be lost immediately. If they do declare for Japan but fail to meet the obligation to revoke the other nationality (or make efforts to do so or have the intention to do so), then they enter this limbo situation where the declaration may be considered invalid, and therefore the Japanese nationality could be lost.

If as some people are arguing, the declaration is meaningless because no actions taken or not taken after declaring for Japan have any impact on anything, then why is it necessary to make the declaration in the first place? And what is the point of forcing Japanese passport applicants to specify whether they have another nationality or not (i.e. whether they have made efforts or had the intention of losing the other nationality)?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

If he or she does not declare for Japan, the Japanese nationality will be lost immediately. If they do declare for Japan but fail to meet the obligation to revoke the other nationality (or make efforts to do so or have the intention to do so)

There is no obligation to withdraw (離脱) the other nationality. There is only an obligation to declare intent to withdraw it. There is no obligation to follow through on that intent.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

That's the part we don't know because it's unclear and future governments may choose to interpret in a different way. I hope you and others are right but we are all trusting to luck on this matter.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

M3M3M3OCT. 18, 2016 - 06:52PM JST

So what is the extent of the Minister's power to naturalise? According to the law, it's to naturalise only those who meet every single requirement applicable to them. So, if the Minister decides to naturalises someone who has not made the 'endeavor' to renounce their old citizenship required by Art 16 (whatever that may entail), then the Minister has acted outside of his legal powers and his actions could be declared void.

Article 5 (2) says MoJ has the power to naturalize a dual national. After the "selection declaration", that comes years after the naturalization, the person has the obligation to endeavor to lose other nationalities. Actually, the government translation of article 16 is rather inaccurate.

第十六条 選択の宣言をした日本国民は、外国の国籍の離脱に努めなければならない。

(government translation) Article 16 (1) A Japanese citizen who makes the selection declaration shall endeavor to renounce his/her foreign nationality.

(verbatim translation) Article 16 (1) A Japanese citizen who has made the selection declaration must endeavor to renounce his/her foreign nationality.

宣言した in the original language should be translated as "who has made the selection declaration" rather than "who makes the selection declaration".

The "endeavor" is not a condition for naturalization. So, lack of it cannot nullify naturalization.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@theeastisred... sorry I am going to reply of your last comment towards mine and I have not read any other comments following that, so please keep that in mind.

Japanese law in this matter is somehow tricky.. yes.

I was borne in Japan and I got double nationality because of my mother side. According to regulations and laws, If I don't proclaim at age 21 (I didn't) which nationality I am going to choose, I am automatically acknowledged as that I did choose the Japanese nationality.

In case of my sisters, who were born outside Japan, if they didn't say which nationality they take by age 21, then they are required to choose and state your intentions by written to the Japanese government. If they fail to do so, the Japanese nationality is automatically nullified by the 22nd birthday (I could be wrong regarding ages). My sisters choose the Japanese nationality, by the way.

We three siblings have until this day both nationalities for the reasons I have told you before.

The same procedure my friends had to do (both parents japanese but borne outside japan). Only those people like my (who were born in Japan) automatically get the Japanese nationality without the need to "choose".

Regarding the taking away the nationality, I have not hear of anyone that got the Japanese nationality by bloodline of by naturalization to be strippen of it. Not even Renho, and she is a very public person in a very powerful position, and not even a squeak regarding of "stripping" her off the japanese nationality has been said.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@Strangerland

There is only an obligation to declare intent to withdraw it. There is no obligation to follow through on that intent.

If this is true, can you explain why you believe the general rule in Article 11(2), which says every Japanese looses Japanese nationality if they 'choose/select' the second nationality in accordance with the laws and regulations of that country, would not continue to apply even to those who have submitted their intent to withdraw their nationality under Art 14(1)? It's not unreasonable to interpret Article 11(2) as meaning that everyone over 21 automatically looses Japanese nationality at the moment they choose to excercise the privilleges of the second country, such as renewing their foreign passport, using it to travel or to enter that country, identifying themselves as a citizen on their tax return, or perhaps even just deciding to keep it when a clear opportunity to renounce it presented itself such as when passing through passport control in that foreign country. If this doesn't amount to selecting the nationality of the foreign country in accordance with the laws and regulations of that country, what does?

@theeastisred is right. Nobody really knows what the words mean or how far they can be stretched. They've never been interpreted by the courts. Any confidence that you can keep your foreign nationality because of a loophole in the wording is probably just wishful thinking when you understand how unconcerned Japanese courts are with literal interpretations. Luckily Japan hasn't strictly enforced this but unfortunately the entire Renho incident will mean that the government decides to start tightening the screws.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Daniel,

Thanks for the interesting background. I don't believe it makes any difference where people were born, though, in Japanese law. The situation is the same whether born in or outside Japan and the parentage is the crucial factor.

And yes, I agree there was no discussion about whether Renho's Japanese citizenship should be revoked. As M3 says, up to now the authorities have taken a 'laissez-faire' approach but if the whole issue is wrapped in a cloud of uncertainty. I think the requirement to choose should be dropped, and the 'encouragement' to revoke the other nationality also dropped. That would remove the danger, however hypothetical, that people could suddenly find themselves deprived of Japanese nationality.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

@CH3CHO

Sorry, I missed your comment before I replied to Strangerland. You are correct about the endeavor, my apologies. I thought we were talking about naturalisation and I didn't check to see that Article 16 only applies to those who turn 21. However, there is a similar obligation for those who naturalise which is expressed in Article 5(1)(v) which says that the Minister cannot naturalise anyone unless they should give up their foreign nationality. They don't use the word endeavor, but it also suggests a strong obligation to make some attempt to give up foreign nationality before naturalising.

As far as those who turn 21. I've expressed my thoughts in the reply to Strangerland. I'd be curious to hear what you think of my interpretation of Article 11(2). Thanks.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

M3M3M3OCT. 19, 2016 - 11:05AM JST

If this is true, can you explain why you believe the general rule in Article 11(2), which says every Japanese looses Japanese nationality if they 'choose/select' the second nationality in accordance with the laws and regulations of that country, would not continue to apply even to those who have submitted their intent to withdraw their nationality under Art 14(1)?

Whether a person loses the nationality of a foreign country is a matter of the law of the foreign country. Japanese law is irrelevant to it.

It's not unreasonable to interpret Article 11(2) as meaning that everyone over 21 automatically looses Japanese nationality at the moment they choose to excercise the privilleges of the second country, such as renewing their foreign passport

No.

第十一条 日本国民は、自己の志望によつて外国の国籍を取得したときは、日本の国籍を失う。

Article 11 (1) If a Japanese citizen acquires the nationality of a foreign country at his/her choice, he/she loses Japanese nationality.

2 外国の国籍を有する日本国民は、その外国の法令によりその国の国籍を選択したときは、日本の国籍を失う。

(2) A Japanese citizen having the nationality of a foreign country loses Japanese nationality when he/she selects the nationality of that foreign country according to the laws and regulations thereof.

"Thereof" corresponds to その外国の "of the foreign country" in the original language. The law of the foreign country may or may not have "selection of nationality". What it means is construed, from mutuality standpoint, as a legal procedure that is similar to that of Japan. "Selection of nationality" under Japanese law is defined in article 14 (2), which says it is to choose Japanese nationality and to declare the intent to lose other nationalities. So, if a Japanese notional does something comparable to declare the intent to lose Japanese nationality, he loses his Japanese nationality. But mere renewing of a foreign passport does not amount to "selection of nationality", since mere renewing of Japanese passport does not amount to "selection of nationality" under Japanese law.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@CH3CHO

Whether a person loses the nationality of a foreign country is a matter of the law of the foreign country. Japanese law is irrelevant to it.

But Japanese law can strip Japanese citizens of Japanese nationality if they fail to voluntarily renounce or take reasonable steps to renounce their foreign nationality. And this is what the law does. The unique thing about Japan is that this process is automatic so nobody knows when it happens or if it has happened to them.

What it means is construed, from mutuality standpoint, as a legal procedure that is similar to that of Japan..... But mere renewing of a foreign passport does not amount to "selection of nationality", since mere renewing of Japanese passport does not amount to "selection of nationality" under Japanese law.

This is a very good point. But seeing as no country I know of has a procedure comparable to Japan, I think the courts will look at the totality of the situation and say that from a constructive standpoint, you have selected foreign nationality if you continue to exercise the privileges of a foreign country. To decide otherwise would render the Japanese law completely ineffective and this is not something the courts are going to be prepared to do.

Again, I'm not insisting that my interpretation is correct, but I don't think it's unreasonable. The point is that nobody can be entirely certain.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I know lots of people with that hold two passports.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

M3M3M3OCT. 19, 2016 - 11:31AM JST

which is expressed in Article 5(1)(v) which says that the Minister cannot naturalise anyone unless they should give up their foreign nationality

I think we were looking at different situations. I assumed article 5(2), which is an exception to article 5(1)(v).

M3M3M3OCT. 19, 2016 - 11:52AM JST

But Japanese law can strip Japanese citizens of Japanese nationality if they fail to voluntarily renounce or take reasonable steps to renounce their foreign nationality. And this is what the law does. The unique thing about Japan is that this process is automatic so nobody knows when it happens or if it has happened to them.

Failure to make efforts to lose foreign nationality does not cause automatic loss of Japanese nationality. Automatic loss of Japanese Nationality occurs when (1) one newly acquires a foreign nationality out of his own will, or (2) one makes a "selection of nationality" of a foreign country. One of the ingredient of "selection of nationality" is to declare the intent to lose all nationalities including Japanese nationality other than the chosen foreign nationality. So, I think it is very clear to the person.

Exercising the right as a foreign national is one thing. Declaring the intent to lose Japanese nationality is quite another.

But seeing as no country I know of has a procedure comparable to Japan

For comparative study, US also has a similar clause.

http://uscode.house.gov/view.xhtml?req=granuleid:USC-prelim-title8-section1481&num=0&edition=prelim

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@CH3CHO

Sorry for my huge comment but I've just thoroughly re-read the Act and it's certainly confusing. I've identified 5 separate classes of people that are all treated differently and I thought it might be helpful to mention them and see where our disagreement is and to avoid further confusion.

Class A - Japanese citizens born in Japan who acquire a foreign nationality before the age of 20.

These people have a 2 year window to make a selection of nationality after they turn 20. Provided that they have not selected Japanese nationality within that 2 year window, an automatic loss of citizenship happens at the end of the 2 years (Article 14(1)), OR at the end of the 2 years in the event that the Minister has specifically sent them a letter (or published notice in the gazette) requesting that they make the selection, and they do not respond within 1 month (Article15(3)),

Furthermore, if they want Japanese nationality there are only 2 ways that these people can make the selection. Either they renounce the foreign nationality or file a statutory selection declaration that they have actually renounced their nationality (Article 14(2)).

However, Article 16 then goes on to seemingly contradict Article 14(2) by saying that those who make the declaration are required to make an 'endeavor' to renounce their nationality. I would suggest that the only way this contradiction can be resolved logically is to say that this only applies to those who cannot renounce their citizenship (much like Article 5(2) for foreigners who naturalise).

Class B - Japanese citizens born in Japan who acquire a foreign citizenship after the age of 20.

Exactly the same as Class A above, except that the 2 year window to make the selection starts immediately from the date of acquisition.

Class C - Foreigners who want to naturalise in Japan and CAN renounce their foreign citizenship.

These people must meet all of the conditions in Article 5(1) before the Minister of Justice is allowed to naturalise them. They have an obligation to give up their foreign citizenship (Article 5(1)(v))

Class D - Foreigners naturalising in Japan who cannot renounce their foreign citizenship / stateless foreigners.

These people must meet all of the conditions in Article 5(1) except 5(1)(v) due to the fact that they cannot renounce their citizenship or have no citizenship.

Class E - Japanese citizens who are born in a foreign country and acquire foreign citizenship through birth.

I admit this is the most confusing one. It's covered in Article 12. These foreign born Japanese only seem to be required to indicate an 'intention' to retain their Japanese nationality (unlike those in Class A & B who are explicitly required to declare that they have renounced, or made an endeavor when they make the declaration). There is also no time limit or age limit for this group.

However, my opinion on Class E is that it is an additional obligation on those born outside Japan. If the parents do not make the declaration of intention as soon as possible, the government would have no way of knowing that the these people even exist as citizens. In my opinion these people will still fall under Class A once they turn 20 and will have renounce or make an additional declaration that they have renounced if they wish to remain Japanese.

-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/

Automatic loss of Japanese Nationality occurs when (1) one newly acquires a foreign nationality out of his own will, or (2) one makes a "selection of nationality" of a foreign country. One of the ingredient of "selection of nationality" is to declare the intent to lose all nationalities including Japanese nationality other than the chosen foreign nationality.

Actually no, as I've mentioned above, the automatic part kicks in either a.) 2 years after the age of 20, b.) 2 years after the acquisition for those over 20 or c.) automatically at the end of the 2 years if you haven't replied to the Minister's letter within 1 month.

I think we were looking at different situations. I assumed article 5(2), which is an exception to article 5(1)(v).

Yes, that's right. Article 5(2) is an exception in the event that the foreigner comes from a country where they are unable to give up their nationality.

Failure to make efforts to lose foreign nationality does not cause automatic loss of Japanese nationality.

Again, going back to the 'endeavour' clause in Article 16, I think it's reasonable that if you rely on that clause you need to provide some evidence that you have made a bona fide effort to renounce your citizenship if you are from a country that does not allow it. If the court rules that you have not made any endeavour, but you claim to have done so, then your selection declaration is at risk of being fraudulent.

I think the biggest difference between our positions (based on your previous posts) is that you think people are entitled to lie on the statutory selection declaration without any consequences because there are no specific penalty provisions in the law. This is pretty hard to accept. My stance is that a knowingly false declaration of renunciation is no declaration at all and it could be deemed completely invalid. As a result, the courts may simply say that you have failed to properly make the selection of Japanese nationality within the 2 year window and you have been automatically stripped of your citizenship. I wouldn't advise anyone to take this risk, even if it hasn't happened to anyone,.. yet.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

wtfjapan

The privilege is granted artificially. Not congenital.

people born into wealth shouldn't be allowed to keep their wealth because its discriminates against the poor. that sums up your logic!?

Oh yes in a country with such regime that does not allow for it. Prohibitively high Inheritance Tax exists to strip off such wealth in such country. Japan used to be like that.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

M3M3M3OCT. 19, 2016 - 06:06PM JST

I see your point. I think the difference comes from the sloppy translation by the Japanese government.

第14条 2 日本の国籍の選択は、外国の国籍を離脱することによるほかは、戸籍法の定めるところにより、日本の国籍を選択し、かつ、外国の国籍を放棄する旨の宣言(以下「選択の宣言」という。)をすることによつてする。

(government translation) Article (2) In addition to renouncement of the foreign nationality, the selection of Japanese nationality may be accomplished through selecting Japanese nationality and declaring the renunciation of the foreign nationality (hereinafter referred to as "selection declaration") pursuant to the provisions of the Family Register Act.

(verbatim translation) Article (2) Other than renouncing the foreign nationality, the selection of Japanese nationality may be accomplished through selecting Japanese nationality and declaring the intent to renounce the foreign nationality (hereinafter referred to as "selection declaration") pursuant to the provisions of the Family Register Act.

放棄する旨 should be translated as "the intent to renounce" as opposed to 放棄した旨 which means "the fact of having renounced". Article 16 makes sense if article 14(2) is translated correctly.

Another point is, after the 2 year period in article 14(1), one does not automatically lose Japanese citizenship, but becomes delinquent. Only after a delinquent person receives notice from Minister of Justice and fails to act within 1 month, he loses Japanese nationality.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@CH3CHO

Thanks for the translation and the clarification on the Minister's notice timing. It does seem to make a bit more sense in Japanese (although my Japanese is not great). I also suspect one of the main reasons that the law is so ambiguous is because Japan doesn't want to fall foul of the Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness. Any process that automatically strips someone of nationality before making sure that they have another nationality would technically violate the convention.

As far as being 'delinquent', my problem with this theory (and I have considered it) is that once the two year window has closed, and if the Minister decides not to send you a demand letter, where does that leave you? It seems that you can never select Japanese nationality, even if you want to. The time limit cannot simply be ignored, otherwise it wouldn't be there.

Again, I'm not saying my interpretation is necessarily correct but the situation is far from clear. I actually think your interpretation is also plausible but I think the biggest problem you have is that it completely flies in the face of what everyone acknowledges the Diet's intention was when they passed the law.. namely, to outlaw dual citizenship. The courts will not interpret the Act in a way that renders it almost meaningless. But I guess only time will tell.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

yes japan has the right not to permit a japanese citizen in japan. but i can not stop another country issuing a japanese dual citizenship. And that is great to know. because my partner can not be refused her pension while she is collecting the other pension seeing japan does not permit or recognise dual citizenship lol.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Happily, Japan does not have official "dual citizenship" but they do have "tatemae," which serves the same purpose here. Hence, my kids have de facto dual citizenship. Problem solved.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I have dual citizenship as i was born and live in Northern Ireland. I can have both British and Irish passports.

oldman_13Oct. 18, 2016 - 11:49AM JST There are no benefits.

Since the United Kingdom is leaving the european family, i will still be able to travel through europe and gain work with no restrictions, after the exit is completed, due to having an Irish passport. That is a benefit for me.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I think the Japanese nationality law should be revised so that BOTH parents must be Japanese for the child to be a citizen. Children born abroad and children who naturalized as minors under their parent's wishes should be allowed to retain their Japanese citizenship ONLY if they can show that they can understand Japanese. No translation service should be provided, and all paperwork should be performed in Japanese only.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Many overseas Japanese do not even read and write Japanese. I think dual nationality needs to conditional upon being able to pass a test that is akin to JLPTN1 test except that the ability to write has to be included making the test harder. You basically have to be able to function using Japanese only without resorting to English services and what not. This is very important.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Restricting citizenships to just one is to me a non sense in this modern days of universalisation !

Governments have all the tools they want to verify and check, cross check who and what we are. Fingerprinting at airports is one of those tools. Links between national intelligence and fiscal agencies are buzzing with information sharing, sometimes with near instant results.

So multiple citizenships, if aquired legitimately, whether by birth, naturalization, marriage and even .. adoption, then become a given right which no Government has the logical right to remove. Rather than making laws that prohibit with the risk of putting people in trouble, accepting and assimilating is the only way to go, for the sake of both Country and Citizen.

One important thing to remember though: having one citizenship does not exempt one from the country of citizenship's laws. If one is in Japan, for example, one cannot pretend to be exempt of the rules of the country under the pretext that one is multiple citizen, even if one has used one’s non Japanese passport to enter Japan. To seek help from one’s other country’s embassy when in strife is then an abuse of our multiple citizenship privilege.

Financially wise, there are many rules and agrements that allow for multiple citizenship. Japan is no exception.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Chime2017, you are right for some and yet too extreme. These days we see more and more intercommunal unions between people of different cultures and .. nationalities. To say that both parents should be Japanese for their child to be Japanese is restricting Japan to its own people and denying the effects of Love to happen.

That one should know Japanese does not have to be conditionnal.. it is obvious if the new citizen wants to assimilate with the social and material environment. If not ... one will never be part of the local scene.

I do not know of cases where Japanese citizens residing overseas have been required, by law, to learn the local language.

As for translation services, they already exists for non-residents who deal with Japan and for tourists.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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