What should a non-Japanese person living in Japan do if he or she wants to get a divorce?[Supervised by a lawyer]


The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed our daily lives. Our family life has been affected by school closures, refraining from going out, remote work, and a decrease in income like never before.

In the midst of all this, being forced to stay at home has unfortunately led to an increase of domestic violence and child abuse. The number of divorces is also on the rise.

If you are a non-Japanese person living in Japan and thinking of getting a divorce, the very first thing you should do is to learn about the Japanese laws and systems correctly. If you do, you will be able to assert your rights and opinions fairly and act more rationally.

This time we interviewed Ms. Tabata, a JII board member and lawyer specializing in protecting the human rights of non-Japanese women and children, and created a video on how a non-Japanese person living in Japan can get a divorce, what to look out for, and frequent asked questions about divorce.

According to Ms. Tabata, there are actually some important points, known to very few people, that need to be checked first when getting a divorce in Japan.

In other words, you need to know

1. which country’s law you are getting divorced under

2. whether you can have a divorce trial in Japan or not

This video explains these two points in a specific case.

It also shows divorce procedures, court cases, legal support organizations, and more.

In addition, it has answers to the frequent asked questions regarding divorce by non-Japanese people such as

“How can I prevent my divorce from being finalized without realizing? “

“I don’t speak Japanese well and I don’t have any money, but am I going to be okay?”

“How are child custody and child support decided? “

“Do I have to go back to my country after divorcing a Japanese person? “

“Divorce is not allowed in my country, but can I still get a divorce? “

The video is available in Japanese and English. Please check it out if you want to know the details. We’d be happy if you could use it as a reference to get the accurate knowledge of the law and find the best solution.

Ms. Tabata advised us not to worry about family life issues such as divorce, abuse, and child raising alone, but to talk to experts and people around you.

At JII, you can consult about divorce and your child.

Daily Life Consultation


Also, here is a list of public consultation services.

[If you want to escape because of domestic violence]

On weekdays, go to the Women’s Consultation Center of your local government.

At night or on holidays, contact the police.

[If you want to consult about domestic violence]

Please consult “DV Consultation + (Plus).”

There are multiple languages (English /글글입니다 / Español /Português /Tiếng Việt / Tagalog /ภาษาไทยค่ะ / Nepali / Bahasa Indonesia) available for chatting on the website.

[If you are worried about your child]

Contact your local Child and Family Support Center or Child Guidance Center.

Note: This project was subsidized by the 11th Sumitomo Rubber CSR Fund.