Joint custody could soon become an option for divorced parents in Japan, where, currently, custody can only be assigned to one person.

In mid-April, the Lower House voted in favor of introducing joint custody alongside sole custody. Deliberations have since started in the Upper House and if the law is adopted during the current Diet session, it could become a reality in two years’ time.

Joint custody has many benefits, including establishing child-rearing as a shared responsibility. However, it alone cannot solve the problems in Japan’s custody system.