Parent-Child Visitation Support Guide
Revised effective as of April 2017.
As a social welfare agency providing support for parent-child visitations under the 1980 Hague Convention, ISSJ facilitates visitations and contacts between parents and their children who do not live with each other and are therefore unable to see one another without special arrangement.
Who Can Request Visitation/Contact Support
- Those who have applied for assistance under the Implementation Act of the Hague Convention and received approval from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to receive visitation support.
How to Obtain Parent-Child Visitation Support
- Initial Consultation
We will respond to request for consultation by telephone or e-mail (Japanese or English).
- Submission of Application Form
Please complete the application form by providing requested information and submit it to ISSJ with the original signature of the applicant (the completed form can be mailed or PDF). If you have any agreement or other relevant document pertaining to your visitation rights (such as an agreement between the parties, mediation papers, settlement records, decree and court judgment, etc.), please send all such documents along with the application form.
- Application Review In‐person Meeting for Acceptance and Commencement of Support
Based on the designated application form (and an agreement) that you have submitted, we will have an in- person meeting with the father and the mother separately for acceptance of support. We will ask about background that led to the use of our assistance and previous contact with their children up to the present, etc. We will also explain our support method and confirm the final goal that the father and the mother aim for.
- Visitation Plan
We will work closely with both parents and the child by phone, e-mail, or in-person meetings to develop a visitation plan that takes everyone’s wishes into consideration. The actual visitation schedule is basically decided one month in advance. Please note that we cannot respond to the schedule adjustment immediately before the fixed schedule.
- Follow-Up on Visitation
Once the visitation takes place, we will follow up with both the father and the mother separately by phone, e-mail, or in-person meeting. After providing our visitation support service twice, we will have an in-person meeting again with each of the parents support to confirm the visitation plan going forward.
Details of ISSJ Visitation Support. Services
①Visitation Support with the Attendance of ISSJ Social Worker(at a maximum of 4 times)
ISSJ social worker picks up the child on the day of the schedule visitation and accompanies the child at the site of the visitation. Our visitation support service is available for a maximum of 5 hours a day.
②Online Mimamori Contact (at a maximum of 4 times)
By using an online visitation system developed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs called “Online Mimamori Contact” on PC, tablet or smartphone, the parent and child have online meeting sessions via the internet with the assistance of and monitoring by the social worker.
Terms and Conditions of ISSJ Parent-Child Visitation Support Services
In working with ISSJ, it is important for all parents to observe and adhere to the following:
- We set the visitation schedule based on our assessment of the physical condition and schedule of the child.
- Once the visitation schedule is agreed upon, we will execute such visitation as arranged except in case of unavoidable circumstances.
- Parents should take special care not speak ill of the other parent, and be considerate to each other in order to allow the child to experience a positive and enjoyable visitation.
- Please refrain from smoking or consuming alcohol during visitation.
- If we suspect or notice any abusive behavior, violence, coercion, or plans for abduction, we will terminate the visitation.
- If the child allows the visiting parent to take photos or short videos, please never use any such photos or videos for mediation or other legal proceedings involving the child so as to allow the child to relax and enjoy the visit without worrying or being anxious. (In case of Online Mimamori Contact, taking videos is not allowed during the visitation)
The 1980 Hague Convention Concerning Support for Visitation and Contact
ISSJ has a contract with Ministry of Foreign Affairs(MOFA) to support visitation and contact between parents and children that are separated.
For further information please see Examples of visitation by ISSJ(pdf)
For those who want to be assisted by the Central Authority based on the Hague Convention, please see the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan’s website, “To Those Who Want to Have Visitation or Contacts with the child （Assistance Provided by Central Authority based on the Hague Convention）”
(Examples of visitation by ISSJ included)