Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Japanese parliament passes bill to introduce joint custody after divorce

If enacted, the new legislation will take effect by 2026 and be applied retroactively to those who have already divorced.

• April 16, 2024
COUPLE WITH KID
COUPLE WITH KID[CREDIT : JAPAN TIMES]

On Tuesday, Japan’s House of Representatives passed a bill to introduce joint custody for children after divorce.

At a plenary session of the lower chamber of the Diet, the country’s parliament, the bill, calling for allowing divorced parents to choose either sole custody or joint custody, was approved.

This marks a significant shift in the rights and responsibilities of divorced parents in Japan.

The Bill was approved by a majority vote in the house, following a thorough debate and consideration of its potential impact on divorced parents and their children.

Japan’s current Civil Code grants parental custody to only one of the parents after divorce.

Under the envisioned amendments to the civil law, if parents cannot reach an agreement on custody of their children after divorce, a family court will intervene and decide based on the children’s interests.

If there is suspicion of child abuse or domestic violence by one of the parents, the family court would require the other parent to have sole custody under the bill.

The bill would now be sent to the House of Councillors, the upper chamber, setting the stage for its passage during the ongoing regular Diet session ending on June 23.

If enacted, the new legislation will take effect by 2026 and be applied retroactively to those who have already divorced.

(Xinhua/NAN)

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