Littler Global Guide - Japan - Q1 2017

Browse through brief employment and labor law updates from around the globe. Contact a Littler attorney for more information or view our global locations.

View all Q1 2017 Global Guide Quarterly updates

Amendment of Act Expands the Benefit of Employees with Child or Family Member who Needs Care

Enacted Legislation

The revision of Act on Child Care Leave and Family Care Leave, which becomes effective on January 1, 2017, expands the benefit of employees with a child or a family member who needs care so those employees can keep working with balancing their private lives. Employees are now able to divide family care leave of 93 days up to three periods. Statutory days-off for child care or family care can be taken in half-day increment. Also the revision allows an employee with a family member who needs care to be exempted from overtime work or to have shortened working hours. The requirements for limited-term employees to be eligible for child care leave or family care leave have been relaxed as well.

Necessary Measures to Prevent Maternity Harassment Required for Employers

Enacted Legislation

The amendment of Act on Equal Opportunity between Men and Women in Employment, which becomes effective on January 1, 2017, requires employers to take necessary measure to prevent harassment relating to the employee's pregnancy, giving-birth or taking a childcare or family-care leave. The necessary measure includes, articulating anti-harassment policy, setting up an appropriate help line, swift and proper investigation and actions afterwards, eliminating the cause of harassment, protection of privacy for applicable parties.

Amendment on Act to Promote the Employment of Disabled Employees First Set a Reasonable Accommodation Obligation to Employers

Enacted Legislation

The revision of Act to Promote the Employment of Disabled Employees, which has been enacted June 2013 and has mostly taken effect on April 1, 2016, sets out prohibition of discrimination against disabled employees as well as reasonable accommodation for them. Also, effective on April 1, 2018, this revision will change the statutory employment rate of disabled employees.

Amendment to Act on Employment Insurance to Cover Employees Over the Age 65

Enacted Legislation

The revised Act on Employment Insurance will cover the employees over the age of 65 who have been exempted from employment insurance, effective on January 1, 2017. The payment of premium will be excused until 2019 as a transitional measure.

Amended Immigration Control Act to Create Nursing Care and Tighten the Sanction for Illegal Overstay

Enacted Legislation

The revised Immigration Control Act will create a new category of nursing care, which brings opportunities for nurses and caregivers regardless of nationality, effective on the designated day within a year from November 28, 2016. Currently this category is open only to specific countries under the scheme of EPA (Economic Partnership Agreement). Also, effective on January 1, 2017, the sanction for illegal overstay shall be tightened such as adding penalty for falsifying application documents for entry as well as assisting such falsification for commercial purpose. The cease of the activity for which the visa is granted now immediately constitutes the cause of cancellation of visa if the person is trying to engage in other activities without justified reason.

First Step to Set New Limit of Overtime Work

Proposed Bill or Proposed Initiative

On March 13, 2017, Japan Business Federation ("Keidanren") and Japanese Trade Union Confederation ("Rengo") have agreed to limit monthly overtime less than 100 hours during busy periods among other things and the bill based on this agreement will be started to be drafted for the big revision of Labor Standards Act.

Information contained in this publication is intended for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or opinion, nor is it a substitute for the professional judgment of an attorney.