On April 26, a male office worker in his 40s living in Tokyo who lost his parental rights filed a lawsuit with the Tokyo District Court seeking 1.65 million yen in damages from the government, claiming that Japan’s lack of a “joint custody system” in which both parents have custody of their children after divorce violates the Constitution and the Diet’s failure to legislate. According to Tomoshi Sakka, a lawyer for the plaintiff, this is the first lawsuit to seek compensation from the government for sole custody, where only one parent has custody.
The Civil Code stipulates that one of the parents should be given custody in the event of divorce, but many countries around the world allow joint custody even after divorce.
According to the complaint, the man has two children with his ex-wife, who lost the divorce suit in February and lost custody of the children. According to the complaint, the man has two children with his ex-wife. He claims that the Diet’s failure to amend the Civil Code to create joint custody is illegal and that he has suffered emotional distress due to legislative inaction.
After filing the lawsuit, the man held a press conference in Tokyo and said, “Sole custody is likely to cause disputes between parents over their children. I want to be legally recognized as the parent even after the divorce,” he said. The Ministry of Justice said, “We have not seen the complaint, so we cannot comment on it.