I INTRODUCTION TO THE DISPUTE RESOLUTION FRAMEWORK

Japan has a unitary legal system that can be classified as belonging to the civil law tradition. Under the Constitution of Japan, which provides for the separation of powers between the legislature, the executive and the judiciary, statutes passed by the Diet (the sole law-making organ in Japan) are the primary sources of Japanese law. However, court precedents are very influential in the interpretation of the statutes. While the doctrine of stare decisis as known in common law jurisdictions does not per se apply in Japan, judgments of the Supreme Court have a de facto binding force.

In Japan, court litigation is the method most commonly employed to resolve civil and commercial disputes. There are five types of courts in Japan: the Supreme Court, eight high courts (with six branches) in major cities in Japan, 50 district courts, 50 family courts, and 438 summary courts. There are no administrative courts in Japan. The Supreme Court is the highest court of the land, having 15 justices, including the Chief Justice appointed by the Emperor following designation by the Cabinet. Backgrounds of the Supreme Court Justices vary. Typically, career judges comprise about one third, with the rest coming from attorneys, public prosecutors, bureaucrats, and professors of law. As of 1 December 2016, there are three female Justices. In 2005, the Intellectual Property High Court was established as a special branch of the Tokyo High Court. There is no jury system in Japan’s civil litigation.

II THE YEAR IN REVIEW

In 2016, there were two important court rulings concerning jurisdiction of a Japanese court in cross-border disputes. On 10 March 2016, the Supreme Court delivered its first ruling concerning Article 3-9 of the Code of Civil Procedure (CCP), a provision allowing a court to dismiss the action without prejudice under special circumstances by considering factors such as the nature of the case, the defendant’s burden to make an appearance and the location of evidence, among other things, even if Japanese courts have international jurisdiction based on other provisions thereunder. In this case, a Japanese plaintiff claimed damages against a US corporation alleging that certain statements posted on its website are defamatory. The Supreme Court denied jurisdiction based on the following:

a the dispute derived from litigation in the United States concerning the forced redemption of the corporation’s shares prompted by the plaintiff’s alleged violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act;

b evidence pertinent to the expected issues are located in the US (thus it would overburden the defendant to pursue litigation in Japan); and

c the plaintiff anticipated litigation concerning the management of the corporation to take place in the United States.2

On 15 February 2016, the Tokyo District Court ruled that the forum selection clause provided in the master development and supply agreement between Apple Inc and Shimano Manufacturing Co Ltd is invalid.3 Apple was sued for damages by its supplier Shimano, which alleged that Apple suspended its orders and demanded price reduction and rebate payments in violation of Japan’s Act on Prohibition of Private Monopolization and Maintenance of Fair Trade. The clause provided that the parties submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the state or federal courts in Santa Clara county, California, and that it would apply whether or not the dispute arises out of or relates to the agreement. In essence, the court ruled that forum selection clauses must be made with respect to an action based on certain legal relationships, to ensure foreseeability of the parties and prevent unexpected damages. Because the scope of the clause in question had no limitation other than that the dispute arises between Apple and Shimano, the court found that the clause lacked the above requirement and is therefore unenforceable.

On 28 June 2016, the Osaka High Court set aside an arbitral award rendered by the Japan Commercial Arbitration Association (JCAA) on the grounds that the presiding arbitrator failed to disclose the conflict of interest with the claimant of the arbitration.4 This is the second reported case of setting aside an arbitral award since Japan’s Arbitration Act came into effect in 2004. In this case, the presiding arbitrator worked in the Singapore office of a law firm. A little over a year later, an attorney who represented a sister company of the claimant in an unrelated class action in California joined the same law firm’s San Francisco office. The Osaka High Court ruled that this fact may undermine the presiding arbitrator’s impartiality and independence, and the failure to disclose thereof amounts to a material procedural breach, even if that did not influence the result of arbitration directly. The case has been appealed to the Supreme Court, and is awaiting decision as of 1 December 2016.

III COURT PROCEDURE

i Overview of court procedure

Civil litigation is governed by the CCP and other relevant laws, as well as the Rules of Civil Procedure (RCP) issued by the Supreme Court. Japanese must be used in all court proceedings.5 Thus, any evidentiary documents written in other languages must be accompanied by a Japanese translation.6

ii Procedures and time frames

Civil litigation commences when a plaintiff files a complaint to the court of first instance with competent jurisdiction,7 which will be a district court if the amount in controversy exceeds ¥1.4 million.8 Cases in district courts are generally handled by a single judge, but in some cases the court may decide to adjudicate using a panel of three judges.9 A copy of material documentary evidence concerning matters requiring proof must be attached to the complaint.10

The complaint is then served to the defendant along with summons designating the first date of oral argument, which must be within 30 days from when the action was filed.11 The defendant is usually required to submit an answer one week before the first oral argument. The first oral argument is conducted in a courtroom open to the public. If the defendant disputes the allegations in the complaint, then after the first oral argument the case is typically referred to a procedure called preparatory proceedings. Oral argument and preparatory proceedings are conducted approximately every one to two months depending on the court’s calendar.

Preparatory proceedings are designed to sort out issues and evidence of the case efficiently.12 It is not open to the public, and is conducted outside of the courtroom (usually in an ordinary room near judge’s chambers) in a less formalistic manner to facilitate candid communication between the judge and the parties (or their counsels). Often, the court may discuss potential settlement during the process. Unlike the oral argument, preparatory proceedings may be conducted by telephone or video conference systems so long as one of the parties attends in person.13 Parties submit briefs and documentary evidence to clarify and support their allegations, and through the process the court identifies important facts as well as issues that need to be proven through ensuing examination of witnesses and the parties. Parties are expected to complete submitting their allegations and evidence before the court closes the proceedings. Any late submissions may be denied by the court as untimely if they will delay the conclusion of the litigation.14

In practice, to the extent practicable, courts try to complete examining the witnesses and the parties in one day. Testifying witnesses and parties usually submit a written statement before being examined. Because Japan’s rules of evidence in civil litigation do not impose stringent requirements to admit hearsay, only important witnesses tend to be called to take the stand. Testimonies of marginal witnesses are substituted with their written statements. Once the examination of witnesses and the parties have been completed, courts usually ask the parties to submit their final brief before closing the oral argument. The judgment is rendered within two months after the closing of the oral argument, but may take longer depending on the complexity of the case.15

The losing party may file an appeal to the court of second instance, which will be high court if the court of first instance was district court, within two weeks from the receipt of the judgment.16 For the grounds of appeal, the appellant may allege error not only in the application of the law, but also in the finding of facts. The appellant needs to submit a written statement establishing the grounds for an appeal within 50 days of filing a petition for an appeal.17 Appellate review is usually handled by a panel of three judges, and is restricted to the extent that the appellant requests the prior judgment be rescinded.18 The most recent statistics show that the oral argument is conducted only once in over 70 per cent of the appellate cases.19

Within two weeks from the receipt of the appellate judgment, the losing party may file a final appeal to the final appellate court, which is the Supreme Court if the court below was a high court. The Supreme Court only examines questions of law. The grounds for a final appeal are limited to misinterpretation or violation of the Constitution, or certain grave procedural errors.20 However, when there are no grounds for a final appeal, a party may still petition the Supreme Court to accept a case as a final appellate court; and if the Supreme Court finds that there are material matters concerning the construction of laws and regulations, it may accept the case on its discretion.21 The appellant must file a written statement of grounds for final appeal within 50 days from the day on which the appellant received a written notice of the filing of a final appeal.22 In practice, the Supreme Court conducts oral argument only if it contemplates reversing the judgment below.

Judicial statistics23 indicate that at district court, approximately 76.9 per cent of the cases are adjudicated within one year, and about 93.9 per cent within two years. At high court, approximately 76.5 per cent of the cases are adjudicated within six months, and about 93.8 per cent within one year. For district court cases that reached up to the Supreme Court, about 59.5 per cent were completed within three years from the filing of the complaint in a district court, and about 90.8 per cent were completed within five years.

iii Class actions

On 1 October 2016, the Act on Special Provisions of Civil Court Procedures for Collective Recovery of Property Damage of Consumers (the New Act) came into effect. The New Act is a new legislation enabling consumers to recover damages collectively concerning claims in connection with consumer contracts. The New Act will not apply to claims in connection with consumer contracts concluded before the New Act came into effect.

While often dubbed as the Japanese version of a class action, the new system under the New Act is considerably different from the class action under US law. Notably, the ability to initiate important procedures under the New Act is not given to individual consumers, but to a Specific Qualified Consumer Organisation (SQCO) certified and regulated by the Prime Minister. Furthermore, claims that could be brought under the new system are limited to monetary damages that are more or less foreseeable based on the underlying consumer contract.

The system under the New Act is designed in two stages so that consumers may recover damages in a simplified and prompt manner. First, the SQCO files an action for declaratory judgment on common obligations.24 This stage seeks to determine whether a business operator has an obligation to pay money for property damages to numerous consumers in connection with consumer contracts based on factual and legal causes common to these consumers. Once the common obligation is established by declaratory judgment or otherwise, the procedure then advances to the second stage called ‘simple determination proceedings’. Here, the SQCO will give individual notice to known consumers as well as public notice concerning, among other things, the court proceedings to award damages based on the common obligation, and the method of delegating powers to the SQCO necessary to ascertain the amount of damages specific to individual consumers.25

Claims concerning consumer contracts that could be brought as the basis to establish the business operator’s common obligation are limited to the following five:

a a claim for performance of a contractual obligation;

b a claim pertaining to unjust enrichment;

c a claim for damages based on nonperformance of a contractual obligation;

d a claim for damages based on warranty against defects; and

e a claim for damages based on a tort arising from the provisions of the Civil Code.26

The New Act excludes the following damages as a basis for establishing a common obligation because they need to be determined on a case-by-case basis: secondary loss, loss of profit, damages arising from harm done to a person’s life or body, and emotional suffering.27 To recover these damages, consumers must file their own action with the court.

iv Representation in proceedings

Natural persons (except minors and those under guardianship) may pursue litigation pro se in all instances of civil litigation. Corporations, partnerships and other associations or foundations for which a representative or administrator is designated may also pursue litigation in all instances of civil litigation.28

Generally, only licensed bengoshi (attorneys at law) may serve as counsel.29 However, in limited circumstances, other licensed professionals such as benrishi (patent attorneys) and shiho-shoshi (judicial scriveners) may also serve as counsel.

v Service out of the jurisdiction

Service of documents to foreign jurisdiction is governed by the Convention of 15 November 1965 on the Service Abroad of Judicial and Extrajudicial Documents in Civil or Commercial Matters (the Hague Service Convention), and the Convention of 1 March 1954 on Civil Procedure (the Hague Civil Procedure Convention), bilateral treaties, reciprocal judicial aid arrangements, and acceptance on case-by-case basis agreements. In foreign jurisdictions lacking diplomatic relationship with Japan, documents are served by publication, which becomes effective six weeks after the notice has been posted at the court.30

vi Enforcement of foreign judgments

Article 118 of the CCP provides that a final and binding judgment rendered by a foreign court is recognised in Japan if it meets all of the following requirements:

a the jurisdiction of the foreign court is recognised under laws or regulations or conventions or treaties;

b the defeated defendant has received service (excluding service by publication or any other service similar thereto) of a summons or order necessary for the commencement of the suit, or has made appearance without receiving such service;

c the content of the judgment and the court proceedings are not contrary to public policy in Japan; and

d a mutual guarantee exists.

To enforce a foreign judgment in Japan, a party must file for an execution judgment requesting permission to execute the judgment to the district court having jurisdiction over the obligor. As long as the foreign judgment is final and binding, and meets the requirements under Article 118 of the CCP, the court will render judgment without investigating the appropriateness of the foreign judgment itself.31

vii Assistance to foreign courts

Japan is a signatory to both the Hague Civil Procedure Convention and the Hague Service Convention. When these conventions are applicable, judicial assistance to foreign jurisdictions concerning service of documents and taking of evidence are conducted under the Act on Special Provisions concerning Civil Procedures Incidental to Enforcement of the Convention on Civil Procedure and Other Convention. Note that Japan is not a signatory to the Convention of 18 March 1970 on the Taking of Evidence Abroad in Civil or Commercial Matters. Judicial assistance pursuant to reciprocal judicial aid arrangements or case-by-case basis agreements are governed by the Law Relating to the Reciprocal Judicial Aid to be Given at the Request of Foreign Courts. Japanese courts require serving documents to be accompanied by a Japanese translation.32

Japan has concluded a bilateral consular convention with the United States and the United Kingdom respectively, and allows consular officers from these two countries to record testimony provided voluntarily by residents in Japan.

viii Access to court files

Any person may make a request to inspect a case record. However, if the oral argument of the case is closed to the public, then only parties and third parties who have made a prima facie showing of their legal interest may inspect the record. Copying of the case record is also restricted to the parties and such interested third parties.33

At the request of a party, the court may prohibit those who are not the party to the case from inspecting or copying parts of the case record that include either of the following:

a a material secret regarding the private life of a party, and the inspection or copying thereof by any third party would be substantially detrimental to the party concerned in his or her social life; or

b a party’s trade secret as defined in the Unfair Competition Prevention Act.34

ix Litigation funding

Third-party funding is not common in Japan. For those having difficulties in affording a lawyer, the Japan Legal Support Centre provides Civil Legal Aid in the form of advances.

IV LEGAL PRACTICE

i Conflicts of interest and Chinese walls

Conflicts of interest are regulated by the Attorney Act and the Basic Rules on the Duties of Practising Attorneys,35 which is the professional code of conduct adopted by the Japan Federation of Bar Associations (JFBA). Provisions governing conflicts of interest also apply to registered foreign lawyers in Japan.

A lawyer is prohibited from undertaking a matter if he or she provided advice to or has been engaged by the opposite party, or if the lawyer was consulted by the opposite party to whom he or she owes a fiduciary duty. A lawyer is also prohibited from undertaking a matter that he or she has handled in the past as a public servant, or was involved as an arbitrator or mediator in any alternative dispute resolution proceedings. Without obtaining consent from the client, a lawyer may not undertake a matter requested by the opposing party, a matter in which the interest of the client and the lawyer conflicts, or a matter where the opposing party is the lawyer’s spouse, lineal kin, sibling or cohabiting relative. Also, unless all concerned clients consent, a lawyer may not undertake a matter where the interests of one client conflict with those of another client, or a matter where the opposite party is a client to whom the attorney provides continuous legal service.

For law firms with two or more lawyers, a lawyer is prohibited from undertaking any matter where another lawyer of the firm has a conflict, except where there are grounds enabling the lawyer to maintain impartiality in performance of his or her duty. Chinese walls are fairly common in large law firms, but the existence of a wall alone is not dispositive in determining such impartiality.

ii Money Laundering, proceeds of crime and funds related to terrorism

To prevent money laundering, transfer of criminal proceeds and funds related to terrorism, the Act for Prevention of Transfer of Criminal Proceeds provides that lawyers are to verify a client’s identity and preserve records pursuant to the rules established by the JFBA. Under the JFBA’s Rules Concerning Client Identity Verification and Record Preservation,36 a lawyer (including foreign registered lawyers in Japan) must verify the identity of the client in the following circumstances:

a managing a client’s accounts in financial institutions, taking custody or managing a client’s assets over ¥2 million in total in connection with legal services; or

b preparing or executing on behalf of the client certain transactions including, among other things, selling or buying real property, investing for the purpose of incorporating or managing a company, executing business operations, electing the company’s representative, executing trust agreements, and acquiring or selling a company.

When a lawyer verifies the client’s identity pursuant to the rule, the lawyer must preserve documents submitted by the client for identity verification and keep the record concerning the client’s identity and descriptions of the service provided for five years after its completion.

In addition, a lawyer must carefully consider whether a request to provide legal service or manage assets relates to a transfer of criminal proceeds, and cannot be retained if that is the purpose. If a lawyer becomes aware of the purpose after the engagement, the lawyer must explain that the request is illegal and endeavour to persuade the client to abandon its intent. If the client does not comply, the lawyer must resign.

iii Data protection

The Act on the Protection of Personal Information was significantly amended in 2015 and will come into full force and effect on 30 May 2017. The Act provides a regulatory framework to protect personal information concerning a living individual that either:

a can be used to identify that specific individual based on other information included therein such as name, date of birth or other descriptions; or

b contains individual identification codes to be designated by the Cabinet Order.37

Some provisions of the amended Act apply to foreign business operators that acquire personal information about individuals in Japan in connection with the provision of goods or services and use that information outside of Japan.38

To the extent that a lawyer qualifies as a business operator handling personal information under the Act, he or she must not provide personal data to a third party without obtaining the person’s consent in advance, unless the provision is based on laws and regulations, or falls under certain statutorily recognised exceptions.39 The amended Act also provides that under certain circumstances, a business operator handling personal information must obtain the person’s consent when providing personal data to a third party in a foreign country.40 The Personal Information Protection Commission, which has been newly established as the regulatory body of the amended Act, published four guidelines concerning the Act on its website on 30 November 2016, which will become effective at the same time as the Act itself comes into effect.41

V DOCUMENTS AND THE PROTECTION OF PRIVILEGE

i Privilege

Under Japan’s CCP, communication between attorney and client is statutorily protected in the form of an attorney’s right to refuse to provide testimony or produce documents. A Japanese attorney (including a foreign registered attorney) may refuse to disclose any facts learned in the course of performing his or her duties42 or produce any document containing such facts that are subjected to the duty of confidentiality.43 There are no statutes providing for the client’s privilege, although clients may waive the attorney’s privilege.

Outside of these specific provisions in the CCP, Japan’s current legal system does not recognise attorney–client privilege, or attorney work-product privilege as it is known in the common law jurisdictions, as the recent Tokyo High Court decision confirmed in its ruling.44 Because Japan’s CCP does not provide for a broad pretrial discovery permitting a party to request the other party to produce relevant documents or make disclosures, there has not been much discussion concerning the necessity of privilege until recently. On 19 February 2016, the JFBA issued a proposition to establish privilege securing confidentiality of communication between a lawyer and a client against disclosure requests in civil, criminal, or administrative proceedings.45

ii Production of documents

Under the CCP, a party may request the court to issue an order to produce a specific document held by the other party or a third party. However, the holder of the document may refuse to produce the requested document if it falls under any of the following exemptions:46

a the document contains information that may subject the holder, his or her spouse or a relative to criminal prosecution;

b the document contains secrets obtained by a public officer in the course of his or her duties and the disclosure thereof is likely to harm the public interest;

c the document contains information obtained by a lawyer (including a registered foreign lawyer), doctor or other professional that is subject to the duty of confidentiality;

d the document contains matters concerning technical or professional secrets;

e the document is for the exclusive use of the holder (this excludes governmental documents prepared for the systematic use by the government); or

f the document is related to criminal or juvenile proceedings.

If a party refuses to comply with a court’s production order, the court may deem the other party’s allegations concerning the facts to be proven by such document as true.47 A third party may be fined no more than ¥200,000 for not complying with the order.48

VI ALTERNATIVES TO LITIGATION

i Overview of alternatives to litigation

The alternate dispute resolution (ADR) system in Japan can generally be classified into three categories based on the service provider: judicial ADR involving the court, governmental ADR involving administrative institutions, and private ADR offered by various private entities such as Bar associations, the JCAA, the Tokyo Maritime Arbitration Commission of the Japan Shipping Exchange, and the Japan Sports Arbitration Agency. To promote the use of private ADR, the Act on Promotion of Use of Alternative Dispute Resolution provides for a certification system enabling qualified dispute resolution providers to have their competency certified by the Minister of Justice. As of 1 December 2016, 146 certified dispute resolution providers are in operation.49

ii Arbitration

The Arbitration Act, which is based on the UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration, governs arbitral proceedings seated in Japan and related court proceedings. The Act does not distinguish between domestic and international arbitration, and applies to both commercial and non-commercial arbitration. Registered foreign lawyers may serve as counsel on international arbitration cases seated in Japan; non-registered foreign lawyers may serve as well for such cases if the lawyer was retained in his or her licensed foreign jurisdiction.50 Grounds to recognise, enforce, or set aside an arbitral award are essentially the same as the Model Law.

Japan is a signatory to the New York Convention and is generally recognised as a pro-arbitration jurisdiction. Japan declared that it will apply the Convention to the recognition and enforcement of awards made only in the territory of another contracting state, but does not limit its application to commercial arbitration.

The major arbitral institution commonly used in Japan is the JCAA. However, the JCAA has on average received about 20 new cases a year for the past five years, with 17 new cases in 2016 as of 12 December.

iii Mediation

The Civil Conciliation Act provides for conciliation, a form of mediation in a broad sense provided through the judicial system, where parties may resolve their civil disputes before a conciliation committee consisting of a judge and two civil conciliation commissioners appointed by the court. Agreement reached by the parties during conciliation has the same effect as a settlement in court.51 In 2015, 40,445 civil conciliation cases had been filed in both summary courts and civil courts.52 The process concluded within three months for approximately 68.5 per cent of the cases, and six months for approximately 88.3 per cent of the cases.

 

iv Other forms of alternative dispute resolution

Labour tribunal proceedings in the court, which started in 2006, have become a common option to resolve employment disputes between an individual employee and the employer expeditiously. Under the Labour Tribunal Act, a labour tribunal composed of one labour tribunal judge and two labour tribunal members who are experts in labour relations attempts to resolve the dispute by promoting conciliation or rendering decisions. Save for exceptional circumstances, labour tribunal proceedings must be concluded by the third hearing.53 In 2015, 3,679 new labour tribunal proceedings had been filed with the court. Recent statistics show that, on average, the labour tribunal proceedings take 79.5 days.54

The financial ADR system, which started in 2010, is another ADR system used to resolve disputes with a customer involving financial products or services. Currently, there are eight dispute resolution organisations appointed by the Prime Minister. Mediators appointed by the organisation may prepare a special conciliation proposal if the parties are unlikely to settle voluntarily, and if the customer accepts that proposal, then the opposing financial services provider must accept the proposal unless it takes certain actions such as filing litigation within one month.55 Disputes under the Financial ADR system are typically resolved within two to six months. In the fiscal year ending March 2016, 1,148 new cases had been filed.56

VII OUTLOOK AND CONCLUSIONS

On 27 December 2016, the Consumers Organisation of Japan became the first entity to be certified as an SQCO, and others are expected to follow. The first collective consumer action may be filed in 2017, and will certainly be a touchstone of the new system, which has received mixed reviews.

Footnotes

1 Tomoki Yanagisawa is a partner at TMI Associates.

2 Supreme Court 10 March 2016, Heisei 26 (ju) No.1985, 70-3 Minshu 846.

3 Tokyo District Court 15 February 2016, Heisei 26 (wa) No. 19860 (interlocutory judgment).

4 Osaka High Court 28 June 2016, Heisei 27 (ra) No. 547, 1498 Kinyu Shoji Hanrei 52.

5 Article 74 of the Court Act.

6 Article 138 paragraph 1 of the RCP.

7 Article 133 paragraph 1 of the CCP.

8 Article 24 item (i) of the Court Act. Summary courts have jurisdiction as the court of first instance when the amount in controversy is ¥1.4 million or less. Article 33 paragraph 1 of the Court Act. For the sake of simplicity, this article will discuss cases where a district court is the court of first instance.

9 Article 26 of the Court Act.

10 Article 55 paragraph 2 of the RCP.

11 Article 60 paragraph 2 of the RCP.

12 Article 168 of the CCP.

13 Article 170 paragraph 3 of the CCP.

14 Article 157 paragraph 1 of the CCP.

15 Article 251 paragraph 1 of the CCP.

16 Article 285 of the CCP.

17 Article 182 of the RCP.

18 Article 304 of the CCP.

19 General Secretariat of the Supreme Court, Annual Report of Judicial Statistics for 2015, Volume 1 Civil Cases.

20 Article 312 of the CCP.

21 Article 318 paragraph 1 of the CCP.

22 Article 194 of the RCP.

23 General Secretariat of the Supreme Court, Annual Report of Judicial Statistics for 2015, Volume 1 Civil Cases.

24 Article 3 of the New Act.

25 Articles 25 and 26 of the New Act.

26 Article 3 paragraph 1 of the New Act.

27 Article 3 paragraph 2 of the New Act.

28 Article 29 of the CCP.

29 Article 54 paragraph 1 of the CCP.

30 Article 112 paragraph 2 of the CCP.

31 Article 24 of the Civil Execution Act.

32 Article 1-2 paragraph 1 of the Law relating to the Reciprocal Judicial Aid to Be Given at the Request of Foreign Courts.

33 Article 91 of the CCP.

34 Article 92 paragraph 1 of the CCP.

35 www.nichibenren.or.jp/library/en/about/data/basic_rules.pdf.

36 www.nichibenren.or.jp/library/en/about/data/rccivrp02.pdf.

37 Article 2 paragraph 1 of the Act on the Protection of Personal Information.

38 Article 75 of the Act on the Protection of Personal Information.

39 Article 23 of the Act on the Protection of Personal Information.

40 Article 24 of the Act on the Protection of Personal Information.

41 www.ppc.go.jp/personal/preparation/.

42 Article 197 paragraph (1)(ii) of the CCP.

43 Article 220 item (iv)(c) of the CCP.

44 Tokyo High Court 12 September 2013, Heisei 25 (Gyo-Ko) No. 80, 60-3 Shomu Geppo 613, cert denied, Supreme Court 28 April 2015, Heisei 25 (Gyo-Tsu) No. 496 and (Gyo-Hi) No. 538.

45 www.nichibenren.or.jp/library/ja/opinion/report/data/2016/opinion_160219_2.pdf.

46 Article 220 of the CCP.

47 Article 224 of the CCP.

48 Article 225 paragraph 1 of the CCP.

49 www.moj.go.jp/KANBOU/ADR/jigyousya/ninsyou-index.html.

50 Article 5-3 and 58-2 of Act on Special Measures concerning the Handling of Legal Services by Foreign Lawyers.

51 Article 16 of the Civil Conciliation Act.

52 General Secretariat of the Supreme Court, Annual Report of Judicial Statistics for 2015, Volume 1 Civil Cases.

53 Article 15 paragraph 2 of the Labor Tribunal Act.

54 www.courts.go.jp/vcms_lf/hokoku_06_02minji.pdf. See page 63.

55 Articles 156-44 and 156-50 of the Financial Instruments and Exchange Act.

56 www.fsa.go.jp/singi/singi_trouble/siryou/20160609/02.pdf.