Japan plans to start looking at the idea of granting divorced couples joint custody over children. The law now grants custody to one parent only.
Justice Ministry officials say they will begin discussions on the pros and cons of joint custody after completing an ongoing survey around July. They have been reviewing regulations and operations in 24 countries, mostly Western nations, where joint custody is widely practiced.
There are mixed views of joint custody. Some people say the psychological burden on children can be reduced by preventing a disconnect with one parent. They also say joint custody could make it easier for divorced couples to share child-rearing costs.
But others say parents may have different opinions regarding a child's education, which could hurt the child's interest.
The officials say they will take time before making a decision.