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Japan gov't panel proposes introducing joint custody after divorce

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Japan gov't panel proposes introducing joint custody after divorce

Japan still keep on discussing joint custody.

The proposal also suggests the introduction of a mandatory child support payment scheme and the provision of better legal mechanisms for seizing assets in certain cases.

That's good news, since many single mothers struggling by themselves in Japan.

https://english.kyodonews.net/news/2021/12/d8b8b4ab2cc1-50-of-single-parent-households-in-japan-struggle-financially-study.html

-15 ( +8 / -23 )

recommended that parents decide together on whether they have sole or joint custody of their children

This is a welcome development, but it’s only when divorcing parents are in agreement.

And generally, divorcing parents can’t agree on much, which is often why they’re divorcing.

16 ( +22 / -6 )

Proponents of joint custody argue that the system is more relevant in light of diversifying family relationships by enabling both parents to be involved in their child's upbringing following divorce.

I am amazed that there are enlightened people making positive recommendations and seeing the overall benefits of joint custody!

12 ( +17 / -5 )

Don’t just discuss it, do something. How many suffer due to the draconian way things work here.

19 ( +25 / -6 )

That's good news, since many single mothers struggling by themselves in Japan.

One, the overwhelming majority of these single mothers CHOOSE not to receive child support! If the mothers want to, the can, and I personally know a few that have, petition the family court for support payments.

The courts CAN and DO garnish wages if necessary as well!

The biggest reason they dont, is because they make the choice to cut ALL ties with their husbands, and receiving child support keeps them in contact with each other.

14 ( +15 / -1 )

Good stuff. I hope this gets put into action sooner rather than later.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

Too late for many parents and kids.

8 ( +14 / -6 )

I'm learning that Asian men do not get the respect they deserve both locally and globally.

Dear Asian men, we are allies and we stand with you, especially on joint-custody in Japan

-5 ( +10 / -15 )

Time has changed. Japan should adapt joint custody for their child/children. Most judges still hesitate it.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

“proposes”

This means it will never happen. Typical Japanese obfuscation.

-6 ( +16 / -22 )

The proposal also suggests the introduction of a mandatory child support payment scheme and the provision of better legal mechanisms for seizing assets in certain cases.

IMHO if there's no joint custody (one parent cut off from a relationship with their child) then there should be no mandatory child support payment.

12 ( +14 / -2 )

It certainly is a step towards the 21st century, but I can’t help thinking that it won’t stop women from choosing to erase the father from their child’s life, and may even lead to abductions and worse.

-4 ( +10 / -14 )

LDP scrambling and in damage control only after the Fukuhara Ai case shined a light on this issue...there were numerous instances when non-celebrity normal people brought this up and were dismissed/ignored by policy-makers who make these type of meetings happen...and as pointed out, still in the draft stage, so how it play out in reality (i.e. when involving a foreigner) remains to be seen.

-3 ( +14 / -17 )

Unfortunately, this will not stop an upset parent from using an unverified claim of domestic violence to remove the other parent from the lives of their children.

-6 ( +11 / -17 )

Too late for many parents and kids

What's the point of this? Would you rather nothing be changed for the future, or do you prefer whining about the past?

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

About time!!!

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Unfortunately, this will not stop an upset parent from using an unverified claim of domestic violence to remove the other parent from the lives of their children.

There will always be one! The one who comes up with a "special" case comment

Yeah it has happened, and yeah it will probably happen again, so what do you expect? What SPECIFICALLY do you want to happen?

If you can't verify something, it does not mean it didnt happen, it just means it's unverifiable

1 ( +7 / -6 )

TATEMAE!!!!

Japanese judges does not care about family.

-16 ( +8 / -24 )

introduction of a mandatory child support payment scheme and the provision of better legal mechanisms for seizing assets

Here we go!!!, This will discourage couples from having children..

-26 ( +4 / -30 )

There will always be one! The one who comes up with a "special" case comment

I think what Asiaman7 means is that if the courts apply too much weight to unverified claims of domestic violence then it might not shift the status quo a great deal, no matter whether something approaching joint custody is implemented. I think that might be a legitimate concern as it seems to have come up in many cases involving abduction and he is free to voice such concerns. But it remains to be seen.

9 ( +12 / -3 )

As others have pointed out, it is a step in the right direction. Let's see where it leads.

2 ( +9 / -7 )

Here we go!!!, This will discourage couples from having children..

If anybody is dissuaded from having children by this, that only means this person should not have kids, so I count it as a benefit.

1 ( +10 / -9 )

This isn't about Joint Custody at all. It's a segway.

It will always be about the money. Read the article. "Oh this is good news" "Oh, I'm so excited to read this story". Honey, come here. Look at this! Get all the way to the bottom. Wait for it......BOOM!

The proposal also suggests the introduction of a mandatory child support payment scheme and the provision of better legal mechanisms for seizing assets in certain cases.

Hmmm, why didn't they lead with that? It's like every man who reads this just received a subpoena. Yes, you the male reader have just been put on notice. You're not really going to get joint custody. ASTERIK** Bait and switch is par for the course here.

The draft proposal suggests that if parents cannot reach an agreement on the custody of their children, the matter will be decided by family courts based on the dynamics within each family, with cases of domestic violence and abuse factored into the decision. - Get out of jail free card!

Get ready for MORE false claims of abuse.

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

Redtail SwiftToday  08:13 am JST

indeed!. as always, man are the wallet and the victim.

draft made by women to suck more money from the ex-husband through law enforcement!

the woman will claim domestic violence abuse without evidence to get what she wants. same recipe...

-21 ( +8 / -29 )

Finally a step for children and for fathers crushed by non-justice and fake claims of DM.

I've met so many desperate parents and in depression...in 2010, 2 commited suicide.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

indigo

oh yeah, hállenos often mate. In my case was cleaned out financially, coppers weren’t interested said if you’re married it’s both your money.

-9 ( +3 / -12 )

Yes, please sort this out, this isn't a Japanese culture thing it's about a better life for kids.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

It's about time Japan, welcome to the 21st century.

A subject close to my heart as many of us have been tortured and abused by an abusive and cold blooded selfish System that destroyed so many families.

Do It Now Japan

7 ( +12 / -5 )

""But concerns persist that the system could also perpetuate domestic violence or abuse by forcing ongoing contact with a former spouse.""

This is NOT TRUE, as most if not all divorced parents want to meet and be with their own kids once or twice a month and could care less about the other partner.

Being with our own kids brings joy and peace of mind that only one partner could have under the current system, and if the other parent can't handle it, then I say give up the kids and move on.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

That would be great on many levels, especially during these economic times, where single parents are and have been struggling to get by for years, both financially, and emotionally. It would also save lots of headaches and troubles for couples where families have been destroyed because of the single parent sole custody. A friend of mine is a perfect example of such. Unfortunately, his ex wife got sole custody of his kids and he wasn't allowed to see them until almost 10 years later. This event left many scars and unanswered questions with the kids and the relationships with both parents.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

LegrandeToday 07:35 am JST

LDP scrambling and in damage control only after the Fukuhara Ai case shined a light on this issue...

My exact first thought when I saw the headline! Now that a high profile JAPANESE celebrity finds themself in a pickle and the laws are the reason the government wants to show the public they are sympathetic, JAPANESE celebrity mind you!

5 ( +8 / -3 )

WEll, discussing this issue slows that Japan is finally realising that they are just not in the 21st century as an advanced nation.

-11 ( +5 / -16 )

WEll, discussing this issue slows that Japan is finally realising that they are just not in the 21st century as an advanced nation.

 

This coming from a guy who doesn’t even proofread his or her comment before posting it. Typical Japan basher.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Under joint custody, both parents have the right to make day-to-day decisions concerning their child, such as those concerning their education and medical treatment.

 

 Given the fact  that they are divorced  is that practical?

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

The most miserable aspect of being married in Japan is this always hanging over the father’s head.

6 ( +10 / -4 )

I'm not opposed to mandatory child support as long as it is means tested. Also this should include mandatory custody or monitored visitation in cases of proven domestic violence. As long as a government approved Psychiatrist thinks it would not be detrimental to the child.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I'm sorry my bad. More like the late 70s

By 1979, California became the first state to pass a joint custody statute.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Given the fact that they are divorced is that practical?

Sometimes parents have to put their differences aside for the benefit of their children. Its a sign of maturity.

Unfortunately a lot of parents, not just in Japan, cant manage this and end up punishing their children in the long run out of spite for their expartner.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Proposes? FFS this should have been done 100 years ago.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

This is very good news. One of the J-laws that is out of date and does not benefit the people.

Next thing to tackle is recognition of Dual Nationality with reciprocating nations.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Yep! I’m one of them. I have t seen my kids for twelve years just because she said I couldn’t. I begged and pleaded with her to let me see my kids and I was denied. I went to their school to see them after school and she called the cops. I went to the house to beg her to let me see my kids (through the intercom) and she called the cops and put a restraining order on me for stalking her. Hopefully this ruling will include a fair judgement on child support as well. When I first got divorced she demanded ¥200,000 a month from an English teacher’s salary with no visitation. After a couple of years of pleading with her she came up with a plan to let me see my kids. The plan was to three hours a month supervised visitation that would cost me ¥150,000. Consequently, I just gave up. I did nothing to this woman to deserve such action. She just cut me off from my kids because she could. I reckon she was jealous of the relationship I had with my kids. Now, she got her way and the kids don’t have a father. How bloody wonderful!

15 ( +18 / -3 )

Japan considers boldly stepping into the 19th century.

-5 ( +7 / -12 )

Unless one of them has problems that would prevent otherwise normal parenting, and that would be the exception. Most kids want both parents, and they should be allowed as much of it as possible.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

I'm one of them too. I haven't seen my kids in two years. Initially we agreed on "every weekend" I would see my kids when we separated. Then it became only Saturdays, then every other Saturday, then once a month. Now nothing. After a year of not seeing my kids I stopped paying child support. I still try to attend my kids sports day (My son's first Junior High Undokai is coming up) and I'll be there to see him. This law probably won't mean much to me since I'm already divorced and my kids minds are poisoned, but for all the other blokes that get married to a selfish Japanese woman I wish them luck.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

This is very good news. One of the J-laws that is out of date and does not benefit the people.

Next thing to tackle is recognition of Dual Nationality with reciprocating nations.

Ossan- Hear! Hear!

-9 ( +1 / -10 )

Japan gov't panel proposes introducing joint custody after divorce

oh really?!?!?! is 1976 already?

proposes introducing............

so just a few short months, and then the meeting to propose the date for the meeting to introduce?

another six months to actually have the meeting to introduce?

another six months to survey people about the idea of creating a law about it?

etc.....etc.....

It's just a matter of decades boys!

-3 ( +6 / -9 )

We'll have to wait and see if this comes to anything.

However, it is a step forward to just reject the concept that single custody is simple and automatically the best and only solution.

The draft proposal on post-divorce childcare presented by the family law subcommittee of the Justice Ministry's Legislative Council recommended that parents decide together on whether they have sole or joint custody of their children, with family courts only intervening if there is a dispute.

Parents can already have a de facto form of joint custody if they agree on it. They can do whatever they want without state help. The issue is about how to handle disputes.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

KevinMcgueToday  10:42 am JST

Japan considers boldly stepping into the 19th century.

Joint custody did not appear in the U.S. until 1979 and did not become common until the 1980s.

That is the 20th century. D/A.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jointcustody(United_States)#Opponents

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Join the civilized world, accept modern psychology, and pass the law. Stop harming children in this country simply because the adults are too willfully ignorant to accept facts and logic.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Be warned. It don’t make no sense to have kids with a Japanese woman. You will suffer, both Japanese and foreign dads.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Hopefully those that can’t see their dear children will do soon. It’s awful that this can happen. In my case I didn’t see my son for almost three years, his mother told him I left the country and never wanted to see him again. Luckily he’s not so young, he did contact me and lives with me now.

Its like torture allowing one parent do this to another, it needs to stop.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

In my case I didn’t see my son for almost three years, his mother told him I left the country and never wanted to see him again.

That is terribly sad and is almost too hard to read, but it explains a lot.

Luckily he’s not so young, he did contact me and lives with me now.

Lucky indeed. It just goes to show all clouds have silver linings.

Its like torture allowing one parent do this to another, it needs to stop.

Yes, I agree. And stop it will so don't worry no more.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Separation from children is very painful for most.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Don't have a dog in this fight but, playing devil's advocate, how many of the fathers are not the full ticket ? If I started spouting right-wing talking points I could hardly be surprised if she does a runner.

Not all men, mind you, but one does wonder. There is no smoke without fire.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

his mother told him I left the country and never wanted to see him again.

That's a dreadful thing to happen. I wonder why she would say such a thing?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I want to say better late than never but considering how they're still "discussing" the issue, I wonder if it'll come to pass at all. It's heinous that joint custody isn't an option in Japan; imagine how many parents have taken advantage of this and used the poor child as leverage to get back at their ex amidst a bitter divorce. And the Japanese government helps facilitate this wirh the lack of joint custody. Horrible.

-4 ( +5 / -9 )

For those of you posting kudos to J-Gov be mindful that NOTHING and I mean NOTHING tangible happens in Japan from a government proposal unless it is a tax on regular folk or criminalizing something intended for regular folk. This will be shelved after the LDP gets whatever out of it and c'est la vie!

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Good news and about time.

Should've implemented this policy decades ago.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

This has been needed for a long time. Japan is trying to catch up to the rest of the world. Next, it may be joint bank accounts, modern banks, credit cards, etc. By 2050 the Edo period will be completely forgotten.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

By 2050 the Edo period will be completely forgotten.

And the population will have shrunk to about the same as during Edo.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

a system that is common practice in many other countries

Your bias is showing, Japan Today. It is not common practice, and joint custody laws exist in very few countries actually.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

This is always framed as a parental rights issue, but how about the kids? If a 10-year old kid has had a wonderfully close and dynamic relationship with a parent their entire life, and then one day they are never allowed to see them again simply because the marriage didn't work out, how is that good? Furthermore, I should imagine the custodial parent often makes up horrible lies about the other parent to justify it when the child inevitably and desperately asks why.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

If they ever pass such ideas, I'll be happy. For now, it's just more 'discussions and panels'. So... 40 years from now maybe?

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Mother and father should have joint custody and equally support children expenses. There should not be a blind payment to women just because of them being women. They can work the same as men. In some cases, women should pay child support to men if her income is better than the man and man is doing the most care. Details of each family should be cared about without gender discrimination.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Domestic violence should not be a concern! I thought Japan had a law on the books for this and if someone acts violently they should be arrested, after the divorce is finalized this type of violence should be called an ASSAULT t and not DV, if one or the other violates one another. The divorce should separate that.

But concerns persist that the system could also perpetuate domestic violence or abuse by forcing ongoing contact with a former spouse.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I am so used to the idea of joint custody that I don't understand the idea of not having it.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Burning BushAug. 30  01:50 pm JST

In my case I didn’t see my son for almost three years, his mother told him I left the country and never wanted to see him again.

That is terribly sad and is almost too hard to read, but it explains a lot. 

Luckily he’s not so young, he did contact me and lives with me now.

Lucky indeed. It just goes to show all clouds have silver linings. 

Its like torture allowing one parent do this to another, it needs to stop.

Yes, I agree. And stop it will so don't worry no more.

Great post. A model for others to follow.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Kakarot9Aug. 30  07:33 pm JST

a system that is common practice in many other countries

Your bias is showing, Japan Today. It is not common practice, and joint custody laws exist in very few countries actually.

To which form of joint custody are you referring?

What is your definition of “many” and “few”?

Do your definitions of those words accord with the dictionary definition?

Do you have any evidence to support your criticism of JapanToday?

Thank you for your answers.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

1glennToday  09:42 am JST

I am so used to the idea of joint custody that I don't understand the idea of not having it.

Here's some interesting commentary (in English too) on the issue:

https://www.international-divorce.com/japans-one-parent-rule

It is alien to Japanese tradition and Japanese law for a child's parents to have any significant sharing of parental responsibility upon a family break-up. When parents separate in Japan, one parent invariably takes the child and the other parent largely or entirely disappears from the child's life. It is an extension of the traditional Japanese custom that children belong to a family and can be registered on the official Japanese koseki (family register) of only one family. Thus, the one-parent rule is not merely the mandated law but it is also the societal norm. Indeed, it is considered entirely inappropriate in Japan for the parent who does not have custody of a child to interfere with family peace. and with the child's best interests, by demanding more than occasional and extremely limited contact with a child. It is also considered to be entirely inappropriate for a Japanese court to interfere with family peace by taking any significant action against the parent who is in possession of a child except for suggesting and encouraging mediation or conciliation in the context of the rule that a child “belongs” to the one parent (and his or her family) that has custody of the child.

A significant reason for the one-parent rule, as well as the concomitant practice of drastically limiting child visitation, is to allow and encourage the custodial parent to establish a new family with a new spouse. It is common in Japan for a custodial parent's new spouse to adopt a child from a prior marriage. Thus, if the noncustodial father has significant contact with his child, it would significantly hinder the mother's opportunity to remarry, which would be considered in Japan to be unfair to both the mother and the child.

I'd add only that because the vast majority of divorces in Japan are done without the involvement of judges, as a rule it's only when things go bad that things escalate to court, and at that point the priority is to avoid the worst case. If relations have been poisoned to the point spouses are willing to defame each other (a common complaint as can be seen on this thread) in front of their children, mandating joint custody is unlikely to produce better overall outcomes, and may even be a door to disaster.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

*A significant reason for the one-parent rule, as well as the concomitant practice of drastically limiting child visitation, is to allow and encourage the custodial parent to establish a new family with a new spouse. It is common in Japan for a custodial parent's new spouse to adopt a child from a prior marriage. Thus, if the noncustodial father has significant contact with his child, it would significantly hinder the mother's opportunity to remarry, which would be considered in Japan to be unfair to both the mother and the child.*

Great. Due to the Japanese inability to change because “we are Japanese!” means children are harmed. Again, this is the 21st century ,and psychology settled this question long ago.

I feel for every person who has been robbed of their children because their ex-spouse needs assistance to “establish a new family with a new spouses,” and we definitely wouldn’t want to cause the ex-spouse any “opportunity to remarry.”

Slavery was the societal norm in the US until we changed it because we accepted it was inhumane. Societal norms and traditions are not valid reasons for harming children. Grow up.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Kazuaki -

I neglected to thank you for that information. You constantly provide us with information about Japanese law in English, and you never get snarky. Thank you very much for your healthy contributions to these threads and the information you provide is.

I have always enjoyed and appreciated reading your posts. No sarcasm at all.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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