The disclaimer process to the Japanese family court.

Japanese business start-up consultant

I wrote a relevant blog on 31st August, 2020. ( There were some enquiries on this matter, so I decided to describe some additional points below.

Shihoshoshi Lawyers, who are primarily working on non-conflicting cases and legal administrative matters, have a different perspective from Bengoshi lawyers, who are working on any cases including negotiating legal disputes.

The following contents on this subject of the disclaimer process are written in accordance with Japanese civil law. Under the Japanese legal system, because the estate of a dead person passes to the heirs directly, the heirs inherit a debt or liability as well as tangible asset, such as cash, stocks, bonds and property.

If the deceased person is a Japanese national who left their assets in Japan that the negative assets, such as debts and liabilities, outweigh the positive assets, their statutory heir has the right to renounce their interest under an intestacy. This disclaimer process to the Japanese family court can be done from abroad.

The required documents for this procedure must be in writing, form of the court “the Application for Renunciation of Inheritance” (相続放棄申述書) in Japanese. Copies of the deceased person’s Japanese family register are also required. The fact that such a person is abroad must be made clear at the stage of submitting the documents to the court. An affidavit issued by a notary public in their country of residence, or a certificate of residence and signature issued by the Japanese embassy might be necessary.

In Japan, this disclaimer process does not end with the submission of written documents above, and requires a response to a written enquiry made by the court later on. After submitting the enquiry form, the court will again send a “Certificate of Acceptance of the Application for Renunciation of Inheritance” (相続放棄受理通知書 in Japanese) at the end of the procedure.

It is important to act quickly and seek legal advice, especially if you are an expat and a resident outside Japan. I provide support for the disclaimer process to the Japanese family court from abroad.

司法書士堀明子 – HORIakiko –
司法書士 / ビジネスコンサルタント / ライフ・コーチ
Shiho-shoshi Lawyer / Business consultant / Life coach
Tel: +81-(0)3-3249-1536

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