FAQ

December 19, 2016

Are International Commerce Terms (Incoterms) used in Japan?

International Commerce Terms (or Incoterms as they are often called) are a set of pre-defined commercial terms that are commonly used in international contracts between businesses.  Many of the terms are three letter abbreviations that appear as common clauses in commercial contracts.  Japanese business that rely on import or export of goods will regularly include these standard terms in agreements with foreign buyers or suppliers.
November 29, 2016

Is there an escrow system in Japan?

The Japanese government operates a public system very similar to escrow called the Deposit system (kyotaku 供託).  Under this system, a party may deposit money (or other negotiable securities) with the government deposit office prior to executing a contract.  Upon completion of the contract the government office will release the money to the relevant party.  This system can be useful if two parties to a contract do not trust each other to keep their promises.  In such case, one party may ask the other to put the money in the Deposit system until the performance is complete to ensure that […]
November 7, 2016

Who has the responsibility to repair damage to an apartment in Japan?

In general, Japanese law dictates that lessors are responsible for making the repairs necessary for use of the leased space or object.  In other words, a landlord that rents an apartment is generally responsible for maintaining the apartment in a usable manner.  However, small acts of maintenance (such as changing light-bulbs or repairing the paper on sliding shoji doors) are generally expected to be performed by the tenant during the course of the lease.
October 19, 2016

What are the highest and lowest interest rates allowed in Japan?

Interest-free loans are allowed under the Japanese Civil Code so parties are free to contract into zero-interest loan agreements as they wish.  However, there are limits on how much interest a lender can charge on a loan.  The Interest Rate Restriction Law provides that the maximum allowed interest rate is 15% annually for amounts of 1 million yen or more.