Update on digitalization of Civil Litigation procedures in Japan

Promulgated on May 25th, 2022, the amended Japanese Code of Civil Procedure has a significant update especially regarding digitalization of civil litigation procedures.

Since the promulgation of the amendment to the Japanese Code of Civil Procedure (CCP) on May 25th, 2022, the amendment has become effective in phases.

Key points of the amendment regarding digitalization are,

  • expansion of procedures and relaxation of requirements for online participation;
  • online submission and receipt of relevant documents; and
  • digitalization of case records in principle.

On March 1st, 2023, the provisions regarding online participation for preparatory proceedings and settlement proceedings became effective before courts in civil cases. Thus, one or both parties can now participate in these proceedings via online.

Before the effective date, preparatory proceedings via online were only available when one of the parties appears on that date (i.e., online participation of both parties was not available). Settlement proceedings were not even possible to be held via online.

Though the specific date has not been announced, further provisions enabling online oral arguments will become effective during 2023.

It is also scheduled that provisions regarding online submission and receipt of relevant documents, and digitalization of case records will become effective during 2025.

After these provisions become effective in 2025, online procedures such as to file an action and / or submit a written claim, and to receive service of process from the court via the Internet will become possible. Further, parties will be able to access the court's server via the Internet to view, etc., such case records.


Authored by Hiroto Imai, Mizue Kakiuchi, and Taiju Chimura.

Hiroto Imai
Mizue Kakiuchi
Senior Associate


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