What is Legally Secured Portion in Japan?


Suppose that there’s one wife of Japanese. Her Japanese husband has died. Her husband left a will stating that our children will inherite entire property. Is she not able to inherit anything?

The applicable law in the case of inheritance is the law of the deceased person’s country.

In the given question, since the deceased was a Japanese,the Japanese civil code will apply.

However,the Japanese civil code accepts that it is not appropriate to respect only the will of the deceased and ignore completely the hopes for inheritance of the close relatives.

Hence, a system of legally secured portion was established as a means to guarantee a portion of inheritance for all those eligible.

In other words,for all heirs within a defined limit, a percentage of the share is granted regardless of whether a will is written by the deceased, and the heirs have a right to claim their fixed portion.

2. Person entitled to legally secured portions include lineal descendants, such as the spouse and children of the deceased, as well as lineal ascendants, such as parents. Brothers and sisters may be legal heirs but are not considered persons entitled to legally secured portions.

The percentages of legally secured portions in the case where lineal ascendants alone are the heir(where there is no spouse or child), is one-third of the legally stipulated amount.

Any other cases would be one-half of the legally stipulated amount.

In order for persons entitled to legally secured portions to make a claim for their portion, one must request utter demand for abatement of the legally secured portion.

You should note that your right to the legally secured portion will expire unless action is taken within one year from the time you became aware that inheritance has begun, and that you would have to request abatement for your secured portion.