Civil right. – In the course of 1889, a civil code was promulgated to enter into force on 1 January 1893, essentially based on a notable project carried out by the French jurist Boissonade de Fontarabie. But this code was never applied, due to the very strong opposition of the country, and was replaced with a new, much more elaborate code, which entered into force as a whole on July 16, 1898, although it was promulgated twice, in 1896 and in 1898. The current civil code of Japan was inspired by the German civil code, not neglecting the codes of other countries and national customs, especially in matters of kinship and succession, and in general of family law.
The Japanese Civil Code (Minp ō) includes five books. The first book (articles 1-74) contains the general provisions; the second book (articles 75-398) deals with real rights; the third book (articles 399-724) of the obligations; the fourth book (articles 725-963) of the kinship and the fifth book (articles 964-1046) of the succession. For the transmission of real rights, the code has adopted the principle that this occurs through the simple declaration of the will of the parties, but that third parties cannot oppose the purchase or loss, or the modification of a right in rem on a property, if it is not transcribed according to the rules established by the law on the transcription of real estate. This law, of February 24, 1899, states that the transcription takes place for the constitution, modification or extinction of any of the property rights listed below: 1. ownership; 2. surface; 3. long lease; 4. servitude; 5. pre-emption; 6. pledge; 7. mortgage; 8. lease. The law also admits a provisional registration and a precautionary registration. In this regard, some other laws should be mentioned: 1. law of 27 March 1900, on the surface right; 2. law of 1 May 1909, on the protection of buildings; 3. law of 21 September 1901, on the right of perpetual lease of land; 4. law of 13 April 1910, on the right of land ownership of foreigners; 5. law of 7 April 1921, on the letting of residential houses; 7. Law of March 31, 1914, on marital status; 8. law of March 16, 1899, on citizenship, etc.
Commercial law. – The codification of commercial law was first carried out on the project of the German jurist Hermann Roesler, fundamentally based on the Zollverein German 1861. Although it was promulgated in the course of 1890, to enter into force on January 1, 1893, this code only had partial application from 1893 to 1897, and a very short full application from 1897 to 1899. In this last year, with June 16, the new commercial code came into force, prepared by a committee of Japanese jurists, which was mainly inspired by draft revision of the German Commercial Code (which later became the Handelsgesetzbuch code of 1897), without neglecting the codes of other countries and national mercantile customs. The commercial code of Japan (Sh ō – h ō) was promulgated with the law of March 9, 1899, however the third book of the old code, on bankruptcy, remained in force, a book finally repealed and replaced from January 1, 1923 by the new law on bankruptcy. bankruptcy, of April 25, 1922.
The 1899 Commercial Code, which was significantly changed in 1911, includes 5 books. The first book (articles 1-41) contains the general provisions; the second (articles 42-262 ter) deals with commercial companies; the third (articles 263-433) of the commercial acts; the fourth (articles 434-537) of the debt securities and the fifth (articles 538-689) of the maritime trade. Important rules for the application of the commercial code were issued with the law of March 9, 1899.
Civil procedural law. – A first code of civil procedure was promulgated in 1890, to enter into force on 1 January 1891: it was compiled almost literally on the Zivilprozessordnung of 1879 and was subsequently modified in 1898 (to agree with the new civil code, then published), in 1911, 1922 and 1926.
The Code of Civil Procedure (Minji – sosh ō – h ō) comprises 8 books. The first book (articles 1-222) contains the general provisions; the second (articles 223-359) deals with first instance proceedings; the third (articles 360-419) of the appeals; the fourth (articles 420-429) of the revision; the fifth (Articles 430-443) of the interim proceedings (the modification of 1926 abolished Articles 444-496); the sixth (articles 497-763) of forced execution; the seventh (articles 764-785) of the proceedings by summons for public proclamations; the eighth (articles 786-805) of the arbitration procedure.
Then there is a group of laws which form a real complement to the code of civil procedure, and which we limit ourselves to enumerating here: 1. law of 21 June 1898, on the procedure for state actions; 2. law of 21 June 1898, on the procedure in non-contentious matters (very important law, the first book of which contains the general provisions, the second deals with civil non-contentious matters, and the third with commercial non-contentious matters); 3. law of 21 June 1898, on auctioning; 4. law of 25 April 1922, on bankruptcy, in the second book of which there are real procedural rules; 5. law of 25 April 1922, on the concordat.
Criminal law and procedure. – The codification of criminal law was first carried out on the project prepared by the French jurist Boissonade de Fontarabie, basically based on the Napoleon code. It was promulgated in 1880 to enter into force on 1 January 1882. and after about three decades it was replaced by a new code inspired by more modern principles and more in keeping with the changed times.
According to Aparentingblog, the current penal code (Kei – h ō) was promulgated on April 24, 1907, to come into force on October 1, 1908. It includes two books (general provisions and offenses), and consists of 264 articles in all.
The Code of Criminal Procedure (Keiji – sosh ō – h ō) is Japan’s most recent code, having been promulgated on May 5, 1922, replacing the old 1890 code of procedure.
Complementary provisions of the penal code and criminal procedure are the law of April 17, 1922, which establishes a special court for minors; the other of April 18, 1923, which establishes jurors, and finally the law of March 28, 1931, which grants indemnity in the event of unlawful detention or judicial error.