Posted by debito on July 8th, 2007
Hello Blog. This just in the other day from a friend, who is about to get married. Then he hit a major snag:
The couple had everything ready to go–working through a major chapel in Tokyo and sending out invites to hundreds of guests–and were ready to take out a loan from a finance company affiliated with the wedding company named “Life Angel”. When up came the brick wall:
For any loan over 100 man yen, sez Life Angel, you would have to have three Guarantors (hoshounin). In much the same way that you would if you were, say, renting an apartment.
Fine. He secured three Guarantors, all Japanese, all stable income earners and upstanding members of society. Would be no problem for a housing loan or rental.
But then Life Angel suddenly threw up another barrier midway: Those Guarantors must be family members, within “three levels of relatives” (sanshintou inai no shinseki).
My friend is not a Japanese–he’s a Western immigrant. Which means he has no family here.
But his fiance has Japanese citizenship. Unfortunately, she’s an immigrant too, a naturalized former Chinese citizen. Which means she has no family here either.
So now with a month and change to go before the big day, and investments in time and invites already made, their wedding is in underfunded limbo.
According to my friend, Life Angel loan company has justifed this policy by arguing that weddings are family affairs. Therefore securing family members as Guarantors is not odd.
We disagree. Here’s what’s odd about this arrangement:
It not only excludes the growing number of Immigrants into Japanese society (who can’t always transplants successful families over here as well)…
…but also excludes those Japanese who don’t have families in Japan either.
How about orphans, or people marrying later in life whose older, more established relatives have passed on?
How about those who don’t get along with their families, and aren’t in a position to ask them to be Guarantors?
Look, confining Guarantors to family members isn’t necessary for life’s other big financial decisions, such as mortgages, auto loans, or rental agreements. If it did, we’d have a lot more homeless and carless people. So why a wedding?
It seems even more arbitrary when you realize that a marriage in Japan does not even require that families legally witness the act. The Kon’in Todoke only requires two adult Witnesses (shounin) sign on. They can be anybody, as long as they’re adults.
So what’s with Life Angel’s rules? Especially so far into the game for my friend, who can’t switch tracks to another wedding chapel now?
So much for Life Angel’s “100% wedding ceremony” slogan. Avoid this company if you can. Just another one of those silly rules which has the effect once again of interfering with immigration and assimilation of NJ into J society.
Life Angel KK reachable at:
Tokyo to Minato-ku Nishi Azabu 4-12-24, Kouwa Nishi Azabu Bldg. 4F
0120-69-8515, 03-5469-8515, Fax: 03-5469-8658
Arudou Debito in Sapporo
DOCUMENTATION OF THE ISSUE (click on all images to open anew in browser):
TRANSLATION: As for the “Joint Liability Gurarantor” (rentai hoshounin) column, fill in without fail “spouse” under “JLG 1″. If you are using more then 100 man yen, then fill in two more JLGs under column 2 and 3. Further, in principle, “Joint Liability Gurarantor” is limited to parents, or relatives within three levels of relationship (sanshintou). Also, if they are currently employed, please fill in details of where they work.