Make Japanese Law Transparent



  1. Introduction
  2. General Features of Insolvency Procedures (Liquidation and Rehabilitation Procedures)
  3. Liquidation Procedures
  4. Rehabilitation Procedures
  5. Institutional Framework (Stakeholders, Judiciary)
  6. International Insolvency Issues

1. Introduction

This project will present an account in English of the overall scope of Japan’s insolvency system. However it will not consist of a mere translation into English of Japanese textbooks and similar materials on Japanese insolvency law, as it is felt that such an approach would not assist foreign legal specialists in their understanding in this field. For these reasons the following methodology has been adopted.

Firstly, the order of presentation and the categorization of topics in this document have been modeled on those in “Orderly & Effective Insolvency Procedures - Key Issues,” a document prepared in 1999 by the Legal Department of the International Monetary Fund (available from This document from the IMF was developed in response to the Asian currency crisis of 1997, when the IMF made its financial support to the countries affected conditional upon their establishing proper insolvency systems. It provides comprehensive coverage of the theoretical legal and policy issues to be considered when putting in place a proper insolvency system. By modeling itself on this document, this project has presented the points of interest that Western legal academics and practitioners look for when studying insolvency systems, in an order with which those specialists are familiar (this order is described in more general detail below). This is also the reason for using the categorization of topics in the IMF document in this project.

Secondly, a Q&A presentation format has been adopted. Simply describing the bare bones of a country’s laws governing a particular field of endeavor can obscure the reader’s understanding of how the living body of that law functions in practice. We have accordingly chosen to present Japan’s insolvency system in the form of answers to specific practical questions that the reader may raise.

It is planned to progressively review and improve the categorization of topics and the content of individual sections of the project.

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