News & Blog

April 7, 2017

What is a Force Majeure clause?

The term “force majeure” comes from French and means “superior force.”  As a legal term, it refers to an unpredictable and extraordinary event that prevents the competition of a contract.  Due to the extreme and unpredictable nature of force majeure events, a force majeure clause is often used in business agreements to relieve both parties of liability for non-performance of the contract during a force majeure event.  In many cases, performance of the contract must be resumed after the force majeure event has ended.
April 5, 2017

What is the registration fee to establish a corporation in Japan?

In order to officially register a company in Japan, the founder of the company must pay a registration fee at the Legal Affairs Bureau.  This fee is calculated based upon the initial capital of the corporation.  Therefore, a corporation with an initial capital of one hundred million yen will require a larger registration fee than a company with an initial capital of ten thousand yen.
April 3, 2017

How are employee inventions handled in Japan?

An employee invention is an invention that is within the business scope of the employee’s company and made by the employee as part of the duties of his or her job.  Under Article 35 of the Patent Act, employers are granted a non-exclusive license to the employee invention.  The reasoning behind this is that the employee was working on behalf of the employer when the invention was created and being compensated for that work by the employer, so the employer should also be able to enjoy the benefits of the patent on the invention.
March 31, 2017

Do foreign heirs have to pay Japanese inheritance tax?

The burden to pay Japanese inheritance tax falls on the heirs, not on the estate itself.  However, in some cases, the heirs may not live in Japan and therefore would not normally be subject to Japanese tax.  Therefore, for inheritance tax purposes, non-resident heirs are considered “limited taxpayers” and are subject to tax on any assets they inherit located in Japan.