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Japan: New Instructions Allow Women to Remarry 100 Days After Divorce

(Feb. 26, 2016) Currently, article 733 of Japan’s Civil Code states that women cannot remarry until six months after a divorce. (Civil Code (Part IV and Part V) (tentative translation), Act No. 89 of 1896, art. 733, Japanese Law Translation website.) This provision aims to avoid uncertainty regarding the identity of the legally presumed father […]

Turkey: Legislation Adopted on Part-Time Work Option for Working Mothers

(Feb. 19, 2016) Legislation amending Turkey’s labor laws, adopted by the Grand National Assembly (the Turkish parliament), creates flexible work options. Under the new provisions, “working mothers with young children will be able to work part-time” by permitting “rented workers” (i.e., contract workers), whose employment contracts will end when the mothers go back to work, […]

Sweden: Single Women Receive Legal Right to Insemination Assistance

(Jan. 29, 2016) On January 13, 2016, the Swedish Parliament adopted a law that will give single women the right to receive assistance with artificial insemination. The law gives single women the same reproductive assistance rights as heterosexual and homosexual couples.  (Assisterad befruktning för ensamstående kvinnor, Socialutskottets betänkande 2015/16:SoU3 [Assisted Pregnancy for Single Women, Parliamentary Committee Report […]

Brazil: Ministry of Foreign Affairs Publishes Brochure on Child Custody and International Abduction

(Jan. 20, 2016) On January 19, 2016, the Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs published on its website a brochure (cartilha) on child custody, international abduction of children, and violence against women. (MINISTÉRIO DAS RELAÇÕES EXTERIORES, DISPUTA DE GUARDA E SUBTRAÇÃO INTERNACIONAL DE MENORES – ORIENTAÇÃO PARA OS PAIS, MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS CONSULAR PORTAL (last visited […]

Japan: Supreme Court States Family Name System Constitutional

(Jan. 8, 2016) On December 16, 2015, the Japanese Supreme Court held that a Civil Code provision that requires one partner of a married couple, which in practice is nearly always the female partner, to change his/her surname to that of the other partner does not violate the relevant provisions of the Constitution. (Case No. […]

Saudi Arabia: Proposed Change to Give Widows, Divorced Women More Independence

(Dec. 7, 2015) According to a December 2, 2015, report in Al Riyadh, a state-aligned newspaper, women in Saudi Arabia who are divorced or widowed will soon be able to transact some business without prior approval of a male relative or a court order.  The report stated that the Interior Ministry will issue family identity […]

Kyrgyzstan: Reproductive Rights Now Specified by Law

(Nov. 17, 2015) On July 4, 2015, the President of Kyrgyzstan, Almazbek Atambayev, signed the Law on Reproductive Rights of Kyrgyz Republic Citizens. (Law of the Republic of Kyrgyzstan No. 148 on Reproductive Rights of Kyrgyz Republic Citizens (Law No. 148) (July 4, 2015), Ministry of Justice of Kyrgyz Republic website (in Russian).) This Law […]

Estonia: Access to Abortions Simplified for Minors

(July 28, 2015) On February 12, 2015, the President of Estonia signed into law amendments to the Act on Termination of Pregnancy and on Sterilization, which entered into force on March 2, 2015. (Act on the Termination of Pregnancy and on Sterilization (as amended on Jan. 29, 2015), RIIGI TEATAJA [Estonia’s official gazette] I, 11/2015, […]

Germany: Federal Constitutional Court Declares Child Care Allowance Act Unconstitutional

(July 27, 2015) On July 21, 2015, the German Federal Constitutional Court (Bundesverfassungsgericht, BVerfG) ruled that the Deutscher Bundestag (German Parliament) lacked the legislative power to enact provisions on the care allowance (Betreuungsgeld), which provides money to stay-at-home parents. (BVerfG, 1 BvF 2/13, July 21, 2015 (in German).) The provisions of the Federal Act on […]

Cameroon: Far North Region Bans Burka, Face-Covering Veils

(July 22, 2015) It was reported on July 17, 2015, that Cameroon’s Far North Region instituted a ban on July 15 against women wearing burkas (a covering for the face and the whole body) and veils that cover the face. The ban comes in the aftermath of two suicide bombings, said to have been instigated […]