Watami Co, which operates a chain of "izakaya" (Japanese-style pubs), has reached an out-of-court settlement with the family of one of its employees who committed suicide due to overwork.
Watami admitted responsibility for overworking Mina Mori, 26, who killed herself in June 2008, two months after joining the company, Fuji TV reported. The company has agreed to pay Mori's family 133 million yen in compensation, the family's lawyer, Kazunari Tamaki, told a news conference on Tuesday.
Mori joined Watami as a full-time employee in April 2008, and was forced to work until late every night, with no days off. She worked more than 140 hours overtime each month, for which she was not compensated.
In June of 2008, she jumped to her death, which was recognized as a work-related death by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare.
Mori’s parents filed a lawsuit against Watami and Miki Watanabe, the president of the company at the time, and who is also a member of the House of Councilors, in 2013, demanding an apology and compensation of 153 million yen.
At first, Watami asked the plaintiffs to dismiss their claim and denied any responsibility for Mori's death. However, on Tuesday, Watami finally admitted that Mori’s death was due to overwork and agreed to pay Y133,650,000 to Mori's family.
The company also promised to review its labor practices.© Japan Today