Chief Justice of Japan

The Chief Justice of Japan (最高裁判所長官, Saikōsaibansho-chōkan) is the chief judge of the Supreme Court of Japan and is the head of the judicial branch of the Japanese government.

Chief Justice of Japan
Naoto Ōtani

since January 9, 2018
StyleThe Honourable
AppointerHIM The Emperor
Term lengthLife tenure until the mandatory retirement age of 70.
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The Chief Justice is ceremonially appointed by the Emperor of Japan after being nominated by the Cabinet; in practice, this is following the recommendation of the former Chief Justice.[1] Under the Constitution of Japan, the only other official appointed by the Emperor is the Prime Minister, emphasizing the status of the Court as independent from the elected government.[2]

List of Chief Justices

Name Kanji Appointment date
Tadahiko Mibuchi 三淵忠彦 August 4, 1947
Kōtarō Tanaka 田中耕太郎 March 3, 1950
Kisaburo Yokota 横田喜三郎 October 25, 1960
Masatoshi Yokota 横田正俊 August 6, 1966
Kazuto Ishida 石田和外 January 11, 1969
Tomokazu Murakami 村上朝一 May 21, 1973
Ekizo Fujibayashi 藤林益三 May 25, 1976
Masao Okahara 岡原昌男 August 26, 1977
Takaaki Hattori 服部高顯 April 2, 1979
Jiro Terada 寺田治郎 October 1, 1982
Koichi Yaguchi 矢口洪一 November 5, 1985
Ryohachi Kusaba 草場良八 February 20, 1990
Toru Miyoshi 三好達 November 7, 1995
Shigeru Yamaguchi 山口繁 October 31, 1997
Akira Machida 町田顯 November 6, 2002
Niro Shimada 島田仁郎 October 16, 2006
Hironobu Takesaki 竹崎博允 November 21, 2008
Itsurō Terada 寺田逸郎 April 1, 2014
Naoto Ōtani 大谷直人 January 9, 2018

See also


  1. "Change at the top court's helm". Retrieved 15 December 2014.
  2. Repeta, Lawrence (2011). "Reserved Seats on Japan's Supreme Court". Washington University Law Review. 88: 1716.
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