My novel Losing Kei, is about an American woman who loses custody of her only son to her Japanese ex-husband. As anyone who lives in Japan knows, the Japanese do not allow joint custody and often rule in favor of the Japanese parent. Today, The Japan Times takes up the issues of custody and parental abduction in a two page spread. From Colin P. A. Jones’s article “How Will Japan Respond?”:
“The term Japanese family law may seem like an oxymoron to anyone who has experienced the well-intentioned but often ineffectual efforts of Japan’s family courts in child-custody cases, particularly when a foreign parent is involved. Some consular offices are privately scathing when discussing such cases. Diplomats from one G-8 country who discussed the problem with family-court representatives were even told that in such disputes, custody would always be awarded to the Japanese parent – because only they, not the foreign parent, have a family register.”
For the rest of the article, go here.