Commercial Transactions

August 2, 2018

Are there any limits on what can be contracted to in Japan?

Parties in Japan are free to contract regarding almost anything but contracts that are against public policy are considered void.  This makes sense and most people would agree that the concerns of public health and safety outweigh the parties’ right to enforce a contract for the sale of illegal drugs.  However, there is no specific line to determine which contracts will be considered as “against public policy,” and contracts that might infringe on public policy are dealt with on a case-by-case basis. Sometimes these public policy goals may not be as obvious as the above example where the contract in […]
November 14, 2018

Are there any mandatory provisions that must be included in a contract?

For the most part, parties have freedom of contract in Japan and are allowed to include, or not include, whatever they want in their contract.  However, there are exceptions to this generally lenient rule and the mandatory provisions included in the Japan Civil Code are one exception. Certain contracts are subject to special mandatory provisions that are automatically inserted into the contract by law.  One example is for contracts governing the lease of land for the purpose of owning a building.  The Land Lease and House Lease Act provides that these contracts shall have a minimum term of 30 years.  […]
November 16, 2018

What industries are common in the Kansai area?

The Kansai area, composed of the area surrounding Osaka, Kyoto, Kobe and Nara, has been a major hub of business and commerce since ancient times in Japan.  Kansai’s traditional role as a hub of industry continues to this day but modern enterprises have taken their place alongside more traditional crafts. Some of the major companies that have their headquarters in the Kansai area include, Sharp, Panasonic, Mitsubishi and Kyocera.  The Kansai area also is home to a majority of Japan’s high tech solar power and advanced battery industries.  On the other hand, traditional crafts and tourism related industries still thrive […]
May 23, 2019

Does a buyer have to inspect goods upon receiving them?

A big problem arises in purchase and sales agreements when the seller and buyer are not clear on the products that are to change hands.  The seller may ship a certain quality and quantity of products that he or she thinks the buyer wants, when in fact the buyer actually was hoping for something completely different. In these cases it is always best for the buyer to inspect products upon receipt.  However, whether the buyer has an obligation to do so depends on the terms of the contract or whether the buyer is an experienced merchant or a normal person.  […]