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Tuesday, Feb. 8, 2005

LIFELINES

Wills, holistic dentistry and cash


More on wills

"To quote your column from some time ago," writes MJ, " 'Japanese inheritance law states that at the death of one spouse, half the estate goes to the remaining partner and half to the children of the marriage.'

"Does this apply when the deceased hasn't written a will? Will a will written in another country control the distribution of the estate? How do I get more info about this?"

Writing a will is not a tradition here, so Japanese law is very clear. If there is a will and it cuts out a spouse, he or she will get half of what they would otherwise be entitled to, in other words, a quarter. Any other claim must go through the courts.

Tokyo's Foreign Advisory Centre in Shinjuku (03-5320-7744) says that when one partner is Japanese and the other not, and inheritance is being contested, much depends on the residency status of the non-Japanese spouse and their nationality, as laws vary from country to country. "There is no easy answer," said Ms T of FAC (advisers do not give their names, for whatever reason.)

MJ should talk to lawyers, both here and in his home country.

Holistic dentist

Ahmad N. is looking for a "holistic, amalgam/mercury-free" dentist in Tokyo.

He says that research has established a connection between amalgam fillings/root canals and many diseases, and offers some interesting and diverse links to check:

tuberose.com/Dental_health.html

Amalgam silver fillings: www.amalgam.org/ and www.iaomt.org

On root canals, see www.alternative-doctor.com/dentistry/

For more information, see the article "Are Teeth the Root of Most Disease?" at www.consultclarity.com/blazing/dental.html

Sascha Hewitt of the Web site www.naturalhealingcenter.com says she has heard of holistic dentistry but never come across a practitioner, even in Australia.

A private dentist well-known to the foreign community (he did not want to be named) said that holistic dentistry can be traced to the work of a Harvard graduate who believed in alternative approaches to dentistry.

The use of amalgams containing mercury for fillings is a big controversy, because while mercury is obviously not good for the body, over 150 years have passed without 100 percent proven detrimental effect.

This dentist believes that polymer-based modern composites are not so different to the old fillings: "They're still chemical and again we have no idea of long term effects."

If any readers have experience of holistic dentistry, alternative fillings and other treatments, please let us know.

Whoops!

Regarding ISPs in Lifelines of Jan. 25, Phil says that in fact he wrote, "Asahi Net has far less maintenance-related interruptions of service than JENS . . ."

For balance he notes that many foreigners who want an ISP that provides good English support also want good global roaming service. "One advantage of JENS is that it checks one's incoming e-mail messages and attachments thereto for viruses free of charge, whereas Asahi Net charges the rather high fee of 210 yen per month for such virus checking."

Final note

Waldo notes that recently Japan released new 1,000 yen, 5,000 yen, and 10,000 yen bills. He asks, "Will the old style bills 'expire' at a certain time, after which they are no longer usable as currency or exchangeable for the new style bills? If so, after what date are they no longer good as legal tender?"

What tends to happen is that as old notes are taken out of circulation as they become worn and grubby. There is as yet no cut-off date.

Send your queries, questions, problems and posers to lifelines@japantimes.co.jp


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