​Living information for all

Childbirth and Parenting

Notification of pregnancy and issuance of a maternal and child health handbook (boshi kenko techo)


・Once you learn of your pregnancy, report it to your local municipal office as soon as possible.
・The office will provide the following to those who report their pregnancy:
i. A maternal and child health book (boshi kenko techo)
ii. Tickets for receiving subsidized prenatal checkups
iii. Consultation with public health nurses and other professionals
iv. Information on parental classes (for mothers and fathers)
*The maternal and child health handbook records the entire health history of the mother from pregnancy to birth, and of the child from infancy to early childhood, while providing guidance for the parents or guardians on childrearing. It is designed to allow parents or guardians to make notes of and manage information, and to enable healthcare professionals to make notes of and view information.




Prenatal health checkups


・During pregnancy, you must take even greater care of your health than usual. Please receive regular prenatal checkups and manage your health according to
the advice of doctors, midwives, and other healthcare professionals.
・It is best to receive prenatal health checkups with the following frequency:
i. Once every four weeks from early pregnancy until week 23;
ii. Once every two weeks from week 24 to week 35; and
iii. Once a week from week 36 until childbirth.




Home visits by a public health nurse, midwife, or other healthcare professional


A public health nurse, midwife, or other healthcare professional will visit you at your home to provide you with help and guidance on the following matters;
i. Guidance on home life or meals;
ii. Consultations about uncertainties or concerns you may have about pregnancy and
childbirth; and
iii. Consultations concerning caring for an infant.
*There is no fee for these visits. For details, please contact your local municipal office.




Parental classes (for mothers and fathers)


The municipality holds parental classes on pregnancy, childbirth, parenting, nutrition, and other relevant topics. These classes are also an opportunity to meet and talk with other expecting parents.





Procedures after Birth

Notification of birth


If you gave birth to a child in Japan
・A notification of birth must be submitted by the mother or father.
・This notification must be submitted within 14 days of birth.
・Submit the notification of birth to the municipality where your child was born or
the municipality of the person submitting the notification.
(1) Documents required for notification of birth
・Birth certificate
・For other necessary documents, contact the municipality to which you are
submitting the notification.
(2) Other procedures
If a status of residence is not obtained for the child within 60 days of birth, the
residence certificate may be deleted, and the child may not be able to receive administrative services such as national health insurance and child care allowance. For details, refer to Chapter 1, 2-4, “Acquisition of status of residence.”




Notification of the childbirth to home countries


If neither of the parents have Japanese nationality, your child cannot obtain Japanese nationality even if he or she is born in Japan. In such a case, it is necessary to perform the procedure to report the birth of the child to your home country. For details, please contact the embassy or consulate (general) of the father’s or mother’s country in Japan.In addition, acquire a passport for your child.




Childbirth Expenses and Allowances


・Aspregnancyandchildbirtharenotillnesses,theyarenotgenerallycoveredbyhealth insurance.
・C-sections and other surgical procedures are covered by health insurance as exceptions.




Lump-sum allowance for childbirth


This is a system for paying out 420,000 yen to cover the expenses for delivery when the mother is enrolled in health insurance or the national health insurance. However, if the delivery is not covered by the Japan Obstetric Compensation System for Cerebral Palsy, such as when the duration of pregnancy is less than 22 weeks, the amount paid is 404,000 yen.
There are two types of payment in this system. (1) Direct payment
With this method, the medical institution requests and receives the lump-sum allowance for childbirth on the mother’s behalf. As the lump-sum allowance is paid directly to the medical institution, you do not have to pay the full amount of the childbirth expenses at the payment counter when leaving the hospital.
(2) Proxy recipient
With this method, when requesting the lump-sum allowance for childbirth from
the Health Insurance Association or other association you are enrolled in, you can entrust medical institution where your child will be born to receive the allowance so that the lump-sum allowance is paid directly to the medical institution.




Childbirth allowance


If you are enrolled in health insurance yourself and must take a leave of absence from work without pay, you will receive a childbirth allowance for the duration you were absent within the period starting 42 days before birth (the due date) (98 days for multiple births) and ending 56 days after birth. In principle, the amount equivalent to 67% of your wages per day is paid as childbirth allowance during your maternity leave from your health insurance. However, if you receive wages from the company you work for during your leave, and the amount you receive from the company is greater than the childbirth allowance amount, you cannot receive the childbirth allowance.The date of birth is included in the period prior to the date when the child is born. If the actual date of birth is later than the due date, you will also receive a childbirth allowance for the delayed period.




Childcare leave benefits


(1) Provision during childcare leave
If you are enrolled in employment insurance and take childcare leave to care for a
child who is less than one year of age (one year and two months if certain conditions are met or one year and six months or two years if certain other conditions are met) and meet the following conditions, you can apply for childcare leave benefits at Hello Work to receive the benefits in principle. (For the first six months, you will receive the amount equivalent to 67% of your wages prior to the start of the leave. After that, you will receive 50% of your wages prior to the start of the leave.)
・Conditions for receiving the benefits
i. You have worked more than 11 days per month or more than 80 working
hours per months as the bases of wage payment for 12 months or more
during the two years prior to the start date of your childcare leave.
ii. You meet certain conditions such as your wages during childcare leave drop
to less than 80% of the wages you made when starting your leave.
(2) In the case of a temporary worker (employee with a fixed-term contract)
A temporary worker (an employee with a fixed-term contract) must satisfy all of the following conditions at the start of the childcare leave, in addition to the conditions
above:
i. Employed by the same company (same business owner) for more than one
year
ii. It is unclear that the employment contract will end before his/her child turns
one year and six months old (two years old if the childcare leave starts after the child is one year and six months old due to reasons such as the child being unable to enter daycare).




Child allowance


The child allowance is paid to ensure a stable home environment and the healthy development of the children.
This allowance is paid when the child and the person raising the child are both living in Japan.
(1) Eligibility
Person raising a child until the first March 31st after their 15th birthday
(2) How to receive the child allowance
・ Submit an application for the allowance to your local municipality.
・ In principle, the allowance is paid starting from the month following the month in
which the application is submitted.
・ You need to submit the new application when a new child is born or when you
move to another municipality
(3) Amount *If the income of the person raising the child is at or above income threshold, 5,000 yen a month is paid.
*”Third and subsequent children” means the third child and subsequent children among the children who have not reached the first March 31st after their 18th birthday and are being raised.(4) Payment timingAs a rule, child allowance is paid altogether once in 4 months (June, October, andFebruary).




Checkup of infants


Your municipality provides the following health checkups for free:
・ 18-month-old checkup
・ 3-year-old checkup
・ Depending on the municipality, checkups may be provided for infants of other ages.
*Checkups include tests of development, height and weight measurement, and parenting consultations. For details, contact your local municipality.




Vaccinations


There are some illnesses that can be immunized against with vaccinations. There are two types of vaccinations.
i. Vaccinations recommended by the municipality
These vaccinations may be provided for free. For details, contact your local
municipality.
ii. Voluntary vaccinations available by request
For these vaccinations, you will pay out-of-pocket. Consult your doctor before giving your child vaccinations.




Medical expenses for children


If you are enrolled in a health insurance, you pay 20% of the medical expenses for children up to age six prior to the start of elementary school.
Depending on your local municipality, medical expenses may be free until the end of elementary school or additional aid may be provided.




Facilities for preschool-aged children


・ There are different types of facilities for children up to age six prior to the start of elementary school, such as daycare centers, kindergartens, and centers for early childhood education and care.
・ Fees for daycare centers, kindergartens, centers for early childhood education and care, are free for all children aged 3 to 5. (1) Day care center (Hoikujo)
・ These facilities care for children in lieu of parents and guardians who are unable to
provide care at home for work or other reasons.
・ Regular daycare services are eight hours a day, and some daycares also offer after-
hours services such as evening and holiday daycare services.
・ Some day care centers offer hourly care services in which children can be left there
on an hourly basis in the event of urgent business or a short-term part-time job, for example.
● One point Non-registered daycare facilities (2) Kindergarten (Yochien)
・ Kindergartens are school for children from age three until they start elementary
school.
・ The standard time for education is four hours a day, but childcare services is
available at some kindergartens until evening or night, or from early morning, depending on the circumstances of parents and guardians such as working. ・ Kindergartens focus on a children’s voluntary activity and play, unlike education after elementary school.
・ Some kindergartens also offer consultation services related to child-rearing for parents and guardians in the local community or open their schoolyard to the public.
(3) Center for Early Childhood Education and Care (Nintei Kodomoen)
・ Centers for early childhood education and care combine the functions of both
kindergartens and daycares.
・ Centers for early childhood education and care can be used regardless of whether
parents/guardians work or not.
・ Theyalsohaveotherfunctionsforallhouseholdswithchildrensuchasconsultation
activities to help with the anxiety of parenting and providing a place where parents and children to get together.




After-school Children’s club (Hokagojido-club)


・ For children whose parents or guardians are not at home during the daytime for work or other reasons, after-school children’s clubs are available.
・ In these clubs, after-school care workers are staffed to offer an appropriate place for playing and spending time after classes.
・ In addition to after-school children’s clubs, some municipalities also offer after- school children’s classes that include different types of learning and interactive activities for all elementary school children.




Family Support Center


・The Family Support Center is an organization that consists of the members described below. The Center acts as a go-between to help members support each other.
i. Parents who need assistance in watching infants or elementary school children
ii. People who want to provide assistance
・ Examples of support are as follows.
i. Taking children to and from daycare facilities
ii. Watching children after daycare facility hours or after school
iii. Watching children while parents or guardians go grocery shopping or run
other errands
・ The procedure for using such support is as follows.
i. Contact the nearest local Family Support Center, and register to become a member.
ii. Apply for use of the support.
iii. A Family Support Center advisor introduces you to a member who will
provide you with assistance and acts as a go-between for you and that
person.
iv. Pay a fee to the person who provided assistance after the assistance.





Education

Education system in Japan


The Japanese education system is generally called the “6-3-3-4-year system” and consists of six years of elementary education, three years of junior high education, three years of high school education and four years of college education. Education is compulsory in elementary shools and junior high schools. Preprimary education is given at kindergartens etc.




Elementary and junior high school


Enrollment in a public elementary and/or junior high school
・Parents or gurdians have an obligation to send their Japanese children aged from six to 15 to elementary and junior high school.
・In the case of foreign children, the children can be accepted by Japanese public elementary and junior high school. Tuition and textbooks are free of charge.
・Tell your local municipal office that you wish to send your children to Japanese public school.
・Visit an appointed school with required documents and the Enrollment Permit for International Students issued by the municipal office.
・In Japan, besides elementary and junior high schools, there are compulsory education schools which provide compulsory education comprising grade one through nine, and special schools for physically and/or mentally-challenged children.




High school


・High schools are for those who have graduated from junior high school and wish to continue their studies. To get enrolled in high school you have to take an entrance exam and pass it, as a general rule.
・High schools are categorized into schools offering full-time courses, part-time courses and correspondence courses.
・High school graduates are entitled to apply to university.




Foreign and international school


Besides elementary, junior high and high schools, there are various types of educational institutes for foreign students, or so-called “foreign and international schools.”
Each school has different background of cultures, ethnicities, languages, curriculums and post-graduate paths, so you should choose one suitable for your children. (Enrollment qualifications for those who have graduated from foreign and international schools can be found in 1-7 Higher educational institutes
(colleges and universities).)☛ See the following URL for details:https://www.mext.go.jp/a_menu/kokusai/gaikoku/index.htm




Evening Class at Public Junior High School


・In Japan, there are evening classes at public junior high school for those have not completed their compulsory education either in Japan or in their home country. ・28 cities in 10 prefectures across Japan have 34 evening classes at public junior high schools (as of April 2020) and they accept those who have not graduated from junior high school for any reason.
・If you wish to get enrolled in evening classes at public junior high school near you,
contact your local Board of Education. ☛ See the following URL for details:
https://www.gov-online.go.jp/useful/article/201601/1.html




Lower Secondary School Equivalency Examination


・Those who have not graduated from junior high school in Japan can take this test. ・The test is held once a year.
・By passing the test, you will be qualified to take an entrance exam for Japanese high schools.




Upper Secondary School Equivalency Examination


・Those who have not graduated from high school can take this test. ・The test is held twice a year.
・If you pass it, you will be entitled for the following:
i. To take an entrance exams for colleges/universities, junior colleges or proffesional training colleges in Japan.
ii. To take tests for employment or qualifications which entitles people who have graduated from high shools.
☛ See the following URL for details: https://www.mext.go.jp/component/a_menu/education/detail/ __icsFiles/afieldfile/2019/05/13/1291562_02.pdf




Higher educational institutes (colleges and universities)


Admission to college and university
・Those who have graduated from high schools, middle schools or an accredited international schools in Japan
(http://www.mext.go.jp/a_menu/koutou/shikaku/07111314/003.htm) are entitled to apply for the following:
i. Colleges and universities
ii. Professional and vocational universities
iii. Junior colleges
iv. Professional and vocational Junior colleges
v. Professional training colleges (post-secondarycourse of specialized training colleges), etc.
・Those who have obtained one of the following certificates will also be qualified to apply for the above-mentioned educational institutes:
i. International Baccalaureate
ii. Abitur
iii. Baccalaureate
iv. General Certificate of Education, Advanced-Level
(See a list of accredited international Baccalaureate schools in Japan:
https://ibconsortium.mext.go.jp/ib-japan/authorization/)
・Those who have completed their 12-year education and graduated from an educational institute that is certified by any of the following groups are also entitled to apply for the above-mentioned educational institutes:
i. WASC (The Western Association of Schools and Colleges)
ii. CIS (Council of International Schools)
iii. ACSI (Association of Christian Schools International)
Other institutes for higher education
There are other institutes for higher education in Japan as follows and each has its own application requisites:
Chapter 5 Education
i. Graduate schools mainly for postgraduates
ii. Professional and vocational universities mainly for postgraduates
iii. Colleges of Technology mainly for junior-high graduates




Entrance exam to higher educational institutes


To get enrolled in a higher education institute, you have to pass an entrance exam or document screening.
Some institutes offer special assessments for foreign applicants.
The Examination for Japanese University Admission for International Students (EJU), operated by the Japan Student Services Organization, is employed by many colleges and universities as a special evaluation reference for international students.
☛ See the following URL for details: https://www.jasso.go.jp/en/eju/index.html




Financial support for elementary and junior high students


・There is a system that offersassistance for the expense of school supplies such as uniforms, school bags, stationery and school lunches.
・Low-income parents whose children go to elementary or junior high school are eligible for this assistance.
・The requirements for the assistance and the amount to be paid vary on the
municipality in which the applicant resides.
☛ See the following URL for details:
https://www.mext.go.jp/a_menu/shotou/career/05010502/017.htm
Chapter 5 Education




High School Tuition Support Fund


・High-school students whose annual household income is less than 9,100,000 yen, can receive financial aid to cover the expense of high school tuition.
・Students who go to national or public high school can receive financial aid equal to the amount of the tuition.
・The amount of the aid for private high-school students varies depending on their household income.
・In order to receive the aid, an application form must be submitted. Details will be announced by the school you attend.☛ See the following URL for details: https://www.mext.go.jp/a_menu/shotou/mushouka/1342674.htm☛ If you want to read in English: https://www.mext.go.jp/a_menu/shotou/mushouka/__icsFiles/afieldfile/ 2020/04/30/100014428_2.pdf




High School Supplemental Scholarship Fund


・Low-income parents whose children go to high school can receive benefits to cover the expense other than tuition fees, such as the expense of textbooks and school supplies.
・The amount of the benefits differs in the kind of schools students attend.
・In order to receive the benefits, you have to apply for an application form must be submitted.
・Details will be announced by the school your child attends.
☛ See the following URL for details: https://www.mext.go.jp/a_menu/shotou/mushouka/1344089.htm
☛ If you want to read in English: https://www.mext.go.jp/a_menu/shotou/mushouka/20210128- mxt_shuugaku_1344089_3.pdf




Scholarship for undergraduate and postgraduate students


・Scholarships are provided by the Japanese government, local governments and private foundations.
・National scholarships consist of two types:
i. Grant type: you do not need to pay it back
ii. Student loan type: you have to repay it after graduation
* Some student-loan type scholarships have interest charges while others don’t.
・Those who continue with higher education and have one of the following status of residence are eligible for the scholarships offered by the Japanese government: i. Special Permanent Resident
ii. Permanent Resident
iii. Spouse or child of Japanese national
iv. Spouse or child of Permanent Resident
v. Long-Term Resident (who intend to live in Japan permanently)
There are also grant-type scholarships for those whose status of residence is “Student” and have satisfied the academic requirements.
☛ See the following URL for details: https://www.jasso.go.jp/en/study_j/scholarships/shoureihi/index.html




Learning Japanese


Knowing Japanese will make your life easier in Japan. You can get to know others and make friends with them. They may help you when you need any help. You may be able to fulfill your dreams. In order to be yourself in Japan, it is strongly recommended that you keep studying Japanese.




Overview of the Japanese language


・Japanese language uses five types of characters: hiragana, katakana, kanji, and English letters (romaji) and numbers. Both Hiragana and Katakana have 46 characters each and those written in smaller versions (four characters for Hiragana and nine characters for Katakana). The special symbols ゙ ゚ー are also used. ・Kanji are helpful once you memorize them. Some may look complicated. Start by learning the simple ones.
・Learn about romaji as well, which is often used when you type or text for mails and social media
・If you live in Japan, it is very important to know the names of local places and streets by reading and writing characters such as Kanji. Japanese also has many dialects and they have an important role in your community life. You can learn these dialects at Japanese classes in your area and through communication with local residents.
・There are three forms of polite speech in Japanese: Honorific, humble, and polite. Know the difference and do your best to use them.




Where to learn


By attending Japanese classes, you can not only study the language, but also exchange information and make friends at the same time. Find a language school or lesson near you. Nowadays an increasing number of learners choose to learn online through social media such as Skype or E-learning. Find the method that is suitable for you.
(1) Japanese language school
・There are courses with different purposes: to prepare for school study, for work, or to prepare for exams
・There are classes for beginners through advanced learners.
・You can choose to learn in a group or in a private class.
・You have to pay for the classes.
(2) Japanese classes in local communities
・They are organized by local governments, international associations, or NPOs.
・Classes are held in community centers, schools, churches or volunteer centers. Teachers are volunteers in many cases.
・Some classes are free of charge. They are more economical than studying at a language school.
・Generally, classes are held once or twice a week for one to two hours.
* Check the following when you search for Japanese classes:
1Name of the class 2organizer 3venue 4contact number 5how to contact 6supportedlanguages7courseperiod8numberofsessions 9timetable(dayand time) 10qualification for application 11cost 12 class type (group or private) 13number of students 14level 15who teaches 16what to learn 17 availability of parking, baby-sitting services, etc.
(3) Online classes, distance learning
If you are too busy to go to language school because of working or parenting, you can study Japanese online using SNS or E-learning. There are various version of tuitions and services, so find the one that is most suitable for you.




Japanese language for “foreign nationals as residents”


Some crucial actions which foreign nationals need to take in Japan for their safety and security are listed in 23 languages as “Actions in Daily Life”. Check what you can do and what you want to do in Japanese. Tell your Japanese teachers and assistants about your study targets.
☛ [Examples of Actions in Daily Life (23 languages)] Find examples at the following link:
https://www.bunka.go.jp/seisaku/kokugo_nihongo/kyoiku/nihongo_curriculum/index _2.html




Materials for Japanese learners


Before you purchase textbooks, think about who you are going to study Japanese with. If you have decided to take Japanese classes, textbooks are likely to be provided by the school. If you have decided to study with somebody, choose a text book with them.
Then, what would you like to learn? Japanese characters (hiragana, katakana, kanji or romaji)? Speaking? All four skills (reading, writing, speaking and listening)? The materials you need vary in accordance with your target.
☛ Textbooks are available at large bookstores. A list of textbooks is also available in the “Handbook for Learning Japanese and Life in Japan”.
https://www.bunka.go.jp/seisaku/kokugo_nihongo/kyoiku/handbook/
☛ Foreign nationals who live in Japan have an opportunity to learn Japanese from the website for foreign nationals as residents to learn Japanese language, “Connect and Enhance Your Life in Japan,” aiming to communicate in Japanese or use Japanese in daily life.
https://tsunagarujp.bunka.go.jp/
Chapter 5 Education









Medical Services

Types of medical institutions


・There are a variety of medical institutions in Japan and each one has its own role. If your medical concern is not severe, visit a local clinic.
i. Doctor’s offices, clinics: For treatment of mild symptoms and slight injuries.
ii. Middle-scale hospital: For surgeries, hospitalization and emergency care
iii. Large-scale hospital: For critical emergencies and advanced medical
treatment
・Present your health insurance card at the hospital or clinic, or otherwise you will cover the full amount of medical expenses.
・Find a doctor depends on your symptoms of illness or injuries. Here are some examples:
Internal Medicine: Diagnosis and treatment of diseases affecting the internal organs (digestive, respiratory, circulatory, and urinary organs, blood, endocrine, nerves, etc.) mainly with medication without operations. You can also see them when you catch a cold or have general health problems
Surgery.: Surgical treatments mainly by oerations for internal organs damaged by cancer and injuries
Pediatrics: Treatment of children’s illness
Orthopedics: Treatment of the locomotive systems such as bones, joints,muscles, tendons
and its related nerves
Ophthalmology: Diagnosis and treatment of eye disorders
Dentistry: Treatment of teeth; endodontics, orthodontics, etc.
Obstetrics: Treatment of pregnancy, childbirth, newborns and related disorders etc.




How to find medical institution


・You can search for one using any of the following:
i. Municipal newsletters issued by the municipal office in your area
ii. Online
iii. Medical Information Net, which is provided online by your prefectural
government
2
*In addition, you can also search for medical institutions (hub medical institutions and other medical facilities that can accept foreign patients, selected by prefectures) in foreign languages on the website of the Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO) for foreign travelers visiting Japan.
https://www.jnto.go.jp/emergency/jpn/mi_guide.html
It is also possible to consult at the following:
i. The municipal office in your area
ii. A Medical Safety Support Center (*)
(*) Medical Safety Support Centers are located in about 390 in prefectures,
municipalities with public health centers and wards in Tokyo. ☛ See the following URL for details:
http://www.anzen-shien.jp/center/index.html
If you do not speak Japanese, you can consult at the following:
i. The municipal office in your area
ii. International associations near you
iii. NPOs (they may speak your language)




Medical Insurance


No matter where you are from, you are obliged to enroll in public medical insurance in Japan. This is a Japanese social system to guarantee that any resident can equally receives medical services at a high standard at low cost by sharing the cost across the whole of society.




Health Insurance


(1) Enrollment Requirements
Those who work for a company which is obliged to have their employees enroll in the health insurance and are obliged to enroll in the health insurance:
i. Regular employees, chief executives,board of directors
ii. Those who fulfill all of the following:
・who work during office hours for over 20 hours a week;
・who are expected to work for more than a year for the company; who earn more than 88,000 yen a month;
・who are not students; and
・who work for a company with more than 501 employees.
iii. Those who work as a part-time worker or a temporary staff for less than 30 hours a week but work over three fourths of the weekly labour hours of a regular employee at the same company (work place)
(2) Insurance premiums
As a rule, both the companies (employers) and the insured pay half of the health insurance premiums. Dependents of the insured do not need to pay premiums.
(3) Benefits
Copayment of medical expenses
The copayment ratio of medical expenses for the insured is as follows:
・Preschool infants under six years old: 20%
・School-age children through adults up to 69 years old: 30%
・Adults aged 70 to 74 years old: 20% (Wage-earners at their pre-retirement income level: 30%)
Medical expenses
In the following cases, you will need to pay the full amount of expenses by yourself; however, once your application is approved, the expenses minus your copayment will be reimbursed:
・When you have just been employed by a company and not received an insurance card yet;
・When you purchase medical devices such as a cast;
・When you have received an acupuncture, moxibustion or massage which your doctor deems medically necessary; or
・When you have received medical services outside of Japan. High-cost medical care expenses
The high-cost medical treatment system is a financial support system for cases where the total amount of medical expenses during a month that are paid for treatment or medications (except the cost for food and bed during in hospital) exceeds a certain limit. In such cases, the over-the-limit amount will be covered. The fixed monthly copayment limit varies with age (whether the insured is under 70 years old or not) and the income level of the insured.
Medical transportation expenses
If a pationent has a difficulty in moving due to illness or injury, but get transferred due to a temporary and emergency need as instructed by a doctor, his/her medical transportation expenses will be reimbursed in cash in cases where the following requirements are fulfilled:
You have been properly treated at the medical institution where you had been transferred to;
The reason why the patient has difficulties in transportation is his/her injury or illness which is the cause of the transportation;
It was an emergency and unavoidable.
Accident and Sickness Allowance
When the insured is unable to work due to illness or injury and have been absent from work for three consecutive days, accident and sickness allowance will be paid from the fourth day of absence.
The duration of payment will be onward for up to 18 months counting from the first day of payment.
Childbirth and Childcare lump-sum grant
This is a benefit for an insured or his dependent to help cover expenses related to childbirth. As a general rule, the allowance per child is 420,000 yen.
Maternity Leave Allowance
Maternity Leave Allowance is provided when an insured of health insurance takes leave for give birth. The allowance is paid for the days the insured is away from work during a period starting 42 days (98 days in the case of multiple pregnancies) before the estimated delivery day and 56 days afterward.
Family Medical Expenses
If the dependents of an insured get ill or injured, Family Medical Expenses will be provided. The range, measure and duration of the payment are the same as that of Medical Expenses for the insured.




National Health Insurance


(1) Enrollment requirements
・All registered residents who are under 75 and are not in Employees’ Health Insurance are obliged to get enrolled in National Health Insurance.
・Foreign nationals are obliged to join National Health Insurance except in the following cases:
i. The period of stay is less than three months (*);
ii. The status of residence is “Temporary Visitor”;
iii. The status of residence is “Designated Activities” and the activities are specified as “to receive medical treatment” or “to provide everyday assistance for someone who is engaged in the activities meantioned above”;
iv. The status of residence is “Designated Activities” and the activities are specified as “sightseeing, recreation or other similar activities”;
v. The status of residence is “Diplomat”;
vi. Persons who do not have a valid status of residence; or
vii. Persons who are from a country with which the Japanese government has a social security agreement with including health insurance, and have an official certificate issued by the government to show their membership of the social insurance system in their home country.
(*) Even if your period of stay is shorter than three months, you can join the National Health Insurance if your status of residence is one of the following and if you have any document to certify that your stay will be longer than three months:
・“Entertainer”
・”Technical Intern Training”
・“Dependent”
・Designated Activities (except iii. and iv. above)
(2) Enrollment and withdrawal application
You can join in or withdraw from National Health Insurance at the municipal office in your area. Ask the municipal office for more details.
(*) You must withdraw from National Health Insurance in the following cases:
i. When you move to a different municipality; or
ii. When you join Employee’s Health Insurance.
(3) Insurance premiums
Insurance premiums are calculated on a per-household basis and decided according to the insured’s income or the number of the household. This amount is paid by the head of the household.
* Insurance premiums may be reduced in accordance with income and other circumstances. Ask for further information at the municipal office in your area.
(4) Benefits
Copayment of medical expenses
The copayment ratio of medical expenses for an insured is as follows:
・Preschool infants under six years old: 20%
・School-age children through adults up to 69 years old: 30%
・Adults aged 70 to 74 years old: 20% (Wage-earners at their preretirement income level: 30%)
Medical expenses
In the following cases, you will need to pay the full amount of expenses by yourself; however, once your application is approved, the expenses minus your copayment will be reimbursed:
・When you have just been employed by a company and not yet received an insurance card; ・When you purchase medical devices such as a cast;
・When you have received an acupuncture, moxibustion and massage which your doctor deems medically necessary; or
・When you have had medical services outside of Japan.
High-cost medical care expenses
The high-cost medical treatment system is a financial support system for cases where the total amount of medical expenses during a month that are paid for treatment or medications (except the cost for food and bed during in hospital) exceeds a certain limit. In such cases, the over-the-limit amount will be covered. The fixed monthly copayment limit varies with age (whether the insured is under 70 years old or not) and the income level of the insured.
Medical transportation expenses
If a pationent has a difficulty in moving due to illness or injury, but get transferred due to a temporary and emergency need as instructed by a doctor, his/her medical transportation expenses will be reimbursed in cash in cases where the following requirements are fulfilled:
You have been properly treated at the medical institution where you had been transferred to;
The reason why the patient has difficulties in transportation is his/her injury or illness which is the cause of the transportation;
It was an emergency and unavoidable.
Childbirth and Childcare lump-sum grant
This is a benefit for an insured or his dependent to help cover expenses related to childbirth. As a general rule, the allowance per child is 420,000 yen.




Medical Care System for Elderly in the Latter Stage of Life


(1) Enrollment Requirements When you become 75 years of age
・All registered residents in Japan aged 75 years or older must join the Medical Care
System for Elderly in the Latter Stage of Life.
・Those who are between 65 and 74 years old and have been approved as having certain disabilities can also join this program. ・You have to withdraw from other insurance programs (National Health Insurance, Health Insurance Associations, Japan Health Insurance Association, or Mutual Aid Association, etc.) ・All foreign nationals aged 75 years or older, except in the following cases, must join this program as well: i. The period of stay is less than three months (*); ii. The status of residence is “Temporary Visitor”; iii. The status of residence is “Designated Activities” and the activities are specified as “to receive medical treatment” or “to provide everyday assistance for someone who is engaged in the activities meantioned above”; iv. The status of residence is “Designated Activities” and the activities are specified as “sightseeing, recreation or other similar activities”; v. The status of residence is “Diplomat”; vi. Persons who do not have a valid status of residence; or vii. Persons who are from a country with which the Japanese government has a social security agreement including health insurance, and have an official certificate issued by the government to show their membership of the social insurance system in their home country. (*) Even if your period of stay is shorter than three months, you can join the program if your status of residence is one of the following and if you have any document to certify that your stay will be longer than three months: i. “Entertainer” ii. “Technical Intern Training” iii. “Dependent” iv. “Designated Activities” (except iii. and iv. above) (2) Enrollment and withdrawal applicationYour application can be submitted at the municipal office in your area. Ask the municipal office for more details. Those who move to another municipality in another prefecture should withdraw from this program. (3) Insurance Premiums
Insurance premiums are the total amount of per-capita base and income-base charges. There are cases in which the premiums are reduced for dependents in the employees’ health insurance or for the insured in accordance with their income level and life status. Ask for more details at the municipal office in your area.
(4) Benefits
Copayment of medical expenses
When you receive medical treatment under the insurance coverage, your copayment ratio is 10%. However, if you have an income at a preretirement level, your portion is 30%.
Medical expenses
In the following cases, you will need to pay the full amount of expenses by yourself; however, once your application is approved, the expenses minus your copayment will be reimbursed:
When you have just been employed by a company and not yet received an insurance card;
When you purchase medical devices such as a cast;
When you have received an acupuncture, moxibustion and massage which your doctor deems medically necessary; or
When you have had medical services outside of Japan.
High-cost medical care expenses
The high-cost medical treatment system is a financial support system for cases where the total amount of medical expenses during a month that are paid for treatment or medications (except the cost for food and bed during in hospital) exceeds a certain limit. In such cases, the over-the-limit amount will be covered. The fixed monthly copayment limit varies with the income level of the insured. Medical transportation expenses
If a patient has a difficulty in moving due to illness or injury, but get transferred dut to an instruction by a doctor, his/her medical transportation expenses will be reimbursed in cash in cases where the following requirements are fulfilled:
You have been properly treated at the medical institution where you had been transferred to;
The reason why the patient has difficulties in transportation is his/her injury or illness which is the cause of the transportation;
It was an emergency and unavoidable.




Medicine


・Medicine can be purchased at pharmacies and drugstores.
・Medicine is often used to cure diseases and injuries. However, bear in mind that any medicine has side effects and that it should be handled with care.
・If you have any questions about any medicine, consult a pharmacist or a registered drug seller at the drugstore.
* A registered drug seller offers some over-the-counter (OTC) drugs as well.




Pharmacies


A pharmacy is a shop where pharmacists prepare and compound prescription medications for you. OTC drugs are also available.




Drugstores


OTC drugs are available at drug stores. However, prescription medications cannot be prepared at drugstores.





Pension and Welfare

Pension


The Japanese public pension is a system to provide lifetime social security through mutual generational support.
The system is run with the scheme in which contributions paid by working generations goes to pension benefits of people such as the elderly.
Scheme for Old-age Basic Pension and Old-age Employees’ Pension




National Pension


The Japanese National Pension system is a public pension system in which those aged 20 to 59 years who reside in Japan are to enroll.
(1) How to enroll the system
The insured (participants) are categorized according to their status as follows:
i. Category I insured persons
Persons who are not in Category II or III, such as those who are self-employed, engage in agriculture or fishery, etc. are categorized in Category I.
・Applications to enroll should be filed at the municipal office in your area.
ii. Category II insured persons
・Persons who have already enrolled in Employees’ Pension Insurance system or are categorized in Category II.
・Applications to enroll should be taken care of by the company which employs you.
iii. Category III insured persons
・Dependents of Category II insured persons are categorized in Category III. Applications to enroll are taken care of by the company where your spouse (in National Pension Category II) works.
* Dependents of Category I insured persons are not categorized in Category III.
* Dependent spouses married to persons over 65 years old in Employees’ Pension Insurance system who receive pension benefits are not categorized in Category III,
either.
(2) Contributions
・Contributions for those of Category I are flat. Those in Category II and III are exempted from payments of National Pension contributions.
・Contributions for those of Category I can be paid in cash when you receive a payment notice, by bank transfer, or with a credit card.
・A discount is applied if the full amount is paid in advance.
・Exemption from payment or contributions postponement options are available if you have difficulties paying contributions if your income has reduced or you have lost your job.
・For more details, please contact your municipal government or a Japan Pension Service (JPS) branch near you.
(3) Benefits
Old-age Basic Pension
・Persons who have paid contributions for at least 10 years are eligible to receive the Old-age Basic Pension when the insured attains 65 years of age.
・The benefit amount is calculated in accordance with the period during which theinsured has paid contributions.
Persons who have paid contributions for 40 years from 20 to 59 years of age can receive the full amount of pension benefits.
* The period of time during which the contributions have not been paid cannot be included in the qualifying period for benefits.
* The pension benefit amount to be paid to persons who have been exempted from the contributions payment for a period of time will be calculated in accordance with the type of such exemption and the basic pension expenditure ratio in the National Treasury.
Disability Basic Pension
・Persons who fulfill all of the following are eligible to receive the Disability Basic Pension:
i. A disability has been caused by illness or injuries; ii.The first doctor consultation about the illness or injuries which have eventually caused the disability in question was carried out while the insured had been covered by the National Pension system; and
iii.Contribution payment requirements had been fulfilled at the moment of the first doctor consultation.
i. ii.
A disability has been caused by illness or injuries;
The first doctor consultation about the illness or injuries which have eventually caused the disability in question was carried out while the insured had been covered by the National Pension system; and
Contribution payment requirements had been fulfilled at the moment of the first doctor consultation.
There are two grades of disabilities. Benefit amount varies from the grade.
Disability Grade 1 → Full amount of Old-age Basic Pension x 1.25
Disability Grade 2 → Full amount of Old-age Basic Pension
If you have a Child, no matter which grade he corresponds to, an additional amount is paid.
Chapter 7 Pension and Welfare
Survivors' Basic Pension
A “Dependent with a Child” or a “Child” who satisfies the following conditions is eligible to receive Survivors’ Basic Pension.
→ A “Dependent with a Child” or a “Child” who depended economically on the deceased insured satisfies i or ii below.
i. At the moment when an insured or ex-insured died, he had satisfied the ii.●contribution payment requirements.At the moment when an insured who had been qualified for Old-age Basic Pension for 25 years or more died,a “Dependent with a Child” or a “Child”.The amount of Survivors’ Basic Pension is the same as that for the full Basic Pension benefit. An additional amount will be paid if you have a Child.Key point Who is a “Child”?Chapter 7 Pension and Welfare The term “Child” refers to a child or young unmarried person who fulfills following two conditions:Under 18 years,and 18 years old until first 31st March after his birthday; or Under 20 years old with Disability Grade 1 or 2. Lump-sum Death BenefitIf an insured has paid contributions as a Category I insured person for more than 36 months and has not yet received any benefits, a family member can receive the Lump-sum Death Benefit.The benefit amount varies depending on the length of the contribution-paid period and contribution-exempted period.Widow's PensionThis is a benefit for a widow whose husband has died after contributing to the pension system at least for 10 years as a Category I insured person. However, said widow must have been financially supported by him and married to him at least for 10 years by the time of his death. The Widow’s Pension will be paid from 60 to 65 years old.The amount of the pension is 3/4 of the Old-age Basic Pension calculated based only on the period in which the insured husband had been categorized in Category I. 1-2Employees’ Pension Insurance systemEmployees who work for employers who are responsible to enroll their employees in appropriate employees' health and pension insurance systems will enroll Employees’ Pension Insurance by satisfying the enrollment requirements. (The requirements for
employers and employees are the same as those in Health Insurance.)
Employees who are not eligible for Employees’ Pension Insurance are to enroll in the National Pension system.
(1) Eligible members
Persons who are under 70 years old and work for employers who are responsible to enroll their employees in appropriate employees' health and pension insurance systems and fulfill the enrollment requirements, are to enroll Employees’ Pension Insurance.
* Employers
The following employers have a responsibility to enroll their employees in the appropriate employees' health and pension insurance systems:
i. Corporations; or
ii. Private entities except those in the agriculture, forestry, fisheries and service
industries and that have five or more employees.
(2) Contributions
Contributions are calculated as follows:
Monthly salary (monthly average remuneration) + bonus (standard bonus amount) × Contribution rate ÷2
* The employee and the company each pay half of the contributions for Employees’ Pension Insurance.
(3) Benefits
Old-age Employees’ Pension
If an insured person in Employees’ Pension Insurance system has a coverage period of at least 10 years, Old-age Employees’ Pension benefit can be received.
The amount of the pension varies in accordance with the insured persons’ monthly salary (monthly average remuneration) when paying contributions and the contribution-paid period, etc.
* It is possible to receive Old-age Employees’ Pension before your 65th birthday if you
Chapter 7 Pension and Welfare meet the contribution payment qualifications.Disability Employees’ PensionPersons who fulfill all of the following can receive Disability Employees’ Pension:i. The first doctor consultation about the illness or injury which have eventually caused the disability in question was carried out while an insured had been covered by Employees’ Pension Insurance;ii. Disabilities have been caused by illness or injuries; andiii. Contribution payment qualifications are fulfilled at the moment of the firstdoctor consultation.There are three grades of disability.Benefit amount varies according to the grade.i. Disability Grade 1 → Old-age Employees’ Pension amount x 1.25ii. Disability Grade 2 and 3 → The same amount as the Old-age Employees’Pension* A minimum benefit amount is reserved for Disability Grade 3. Guaranteed minimumbenefit=Disability Grade 2 Disability Basic Pension amount ×3/4Even if your disabilities are not approved for Disability Employees’ Pension, you may be able to receive benefits for persons with disabilities.Survivors’ Employees’ PensionSurvivor dependents of an insured decedent who fulfill any of the following are eligible to receive Survivor’s Employees’ Pension:i. If the insured fulfills contribution payment qualifications and when he/she has died;ii. If the insured fulfills contribution payment qualifications and when he/she has died within five years from the first doctor consultation on the illness or injuries he/she had been suffered from while he/she had been covered by Employees’ Pension Insurance;iii. When an insured or ex-insured who has the valid coverage period for Old-age Basic Pension over 25 years has died; oriv. When an insured who was eligible to receive Disability Grade 1 or 2 Employee’s Pension died.Survivors’ pension amount is 3/4 of the Old-age Employees’ Pension that the insured would receive.● Key Point Who is a “Survivor”?1-3 Lump-sum Withdrawal PaymentsEligibilityYou may claim Lump-sum Withdrawal Payments (LWP) when you leave Japan if you satisfy all conditions as below:1. You do not have Japanese nationality.2. You have been insured under the Employees’ Pension Insurance (EPI) or theNational Pension (NP) for six months or more;3. Your total insured periods for the EPI or the NP are less than 10 years;4. You no longer have a registered address in Japan;5. You are no longer covered by the EPI and the NP;6. You have never been entitled to Japanese public pension benefits includingDisability Allowance.7. Within 2 years after the date you no longer have a registered address in Japan.Chapter 7 Pension and Welfare A “Survivor” is defined as any of the following:1. Spouse (In case of a husband, he must be over 55 years. He can receive a pension from60 years old.)2. Child (as defined in the National Pension system)3. Parents (Over 55 years old. They can receive a pension from 60 years old.)4. Grandchildren (the same conditions as the Children are applicable)5. Grandparents (Over 55 years old. They can receive a pension from 60 years old.)* If a husband is qualified for the Survivors’ Basic Pension, he can receive Survivor Employees’ Pension from 55 years old.* Parents, Grandchildren and Grandparents can receive the benefit according to the priority ranking. Important notes for the application
Before applying for Lump-sum Withdrawal Payments (LWP), please read through the following notes:
1. When you apply for LWP, all your insured periods in the past shall be used as the
base to calculate your LWP amount. Once LWP are entitled to you, these insured periods will no longer be valid. Therefore, please carefully consider before claiming LWP.
* An application form for LWP is downloadable at the JPS (Japan Pension Service) website. Please also read the notes on the application form carefully.
2. If you still have a registered address in Japan on the day when the JPS receives your application, your application will be rejected. Please submit a move-out notice to the municipal office where you live before you apply for LWP.
3. In case you submit your application while you are still in Japan before you move to another country, please submit your application so that it arrives at the JPS after the move-out (planned) date on the residence certificate.
4. The amount of payment of LWP will be calculated based on your insured periods up to a certain number of years. This maximum number of years will be raised from April 2021. Specifically, the maximum number of years according to your insured periods is as follows:
・If your insured periods is only in and before March 2021:
It will be calculated based on your insured periods up to 3 years (36 months). ・If your insured periods includes in and after April 2021.
It will be calculated based on your insured periods up to 5 years (60 months).
Further, if you are going to stay in Japan for several times, with your insured periods expected to be the maximum number of years or more in total, and plan to receive your LWP to be calculated based on the whole length of your insured periods, you might need to claim LWP every time you move out of Japan.
☛ Visit the following JPS website for more details about Lump-sum Withdrawal Payments and the application form including mailing address.
https://www.nenkin.go.jp/service/jukyu/todoke/kyotsu/20150406.html Key Point Social Security Agreement
2 Long-Term Care Insurance
In Japan, there is a Long-Term Care Insurance system where the whole of society supports the elderly who need nursing care, etc. The insured pay premiums and when they need long-term care, they can use the long-term care service by paying their co- payment.
2-1 Eligibility
Persons who are over 40 years old and who will reside in Japan longer than three months have to get enrolled in the system.
2-2 Premiums
The insured in this system pay a premium calculated in accordance with their income in the previous year. The amount of premium varies not only from the income but also from the age of the insured and the area they lives in.
1. Over 65 years old member (Primary insured persons)
As a general rule, the premium is deducted from your pension. (You should pay in cash when you receive a payment notice.)
2. Over 40 and under 65 years old member (Secondary insured persons)
The premium will be deducted together with that for medical insurance.
☛ See the following URL for details about Long-Term Care Insurance (Secondary
insured persons): https://www.mhlw.go.jp/stf/newpage_10548.html
2-3 Long-Term Care service
The process for using the long-term care service:
Chapter 7 Pension and Welfare Japan has concluded Social Security Agreements with several countries. If you have insured periods of a country that has a totalization agreement with Japan, you may be entitled to a benefit(s) from Japan or/and the other country, even if your insured periods of each country is insufficient for the entitlement, by totalizing the insured periods of both countries.
☛ See the list of contracting countries of the Agreements on the website of the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare. 3
i. Apply for a certificate for Long-Term Care/Support Need at the municipal office in your area. Your application needs to be approved.
* You need to be certified for long-term care/support services.
* Once you apply, your physical and mental conditions will be checked and you will
be notified of the result generally within 30 days.
ii. Request a Care Plan from a Care Manager or a Community General Support
Center in your area.
* If you are going to move into a long-term care facility, apply to the facility directly.
iii. Service is provided according to a Care Plan.
* Long-term preventive care and life support services are available for persons who are
not certified for long-term care. Ask at your municipal office for further information.




Child Rearing allowance


This is a benefit for Children (※) in single-parent household.
Persons who are in custody of Children as listed below can receive the allowance:
i. Children whose parents are divorced;
ii. Children whose father or mother has died;
iii. Children whose father or mother has disabilities of a particular grade; or
iv. Children for whom it is not clear whether their father or mother is alive or
dead.
(*) ”Children” means persons who are under 18 years old or younger until the first 31st
March after their 18th birthday, or persons who are under 20 with certain disabilities.
Monthly allowance * In FY2020
First child/Where you have one child
In full: 43,160 yen Partial payment: from 43,150 to 10,180 yen
Additional amount for the second child and subsequent children
Chapter 7 Pension and Welfare [Second child]In full: 10,190 yen Partial payment: from 10,180 to 5,100 yen [Per child including the third and subsequent children]In full: 6,110 yen Partial payment: From 6,100 to 3,060 yen* The benefit amount varies from year to year depending on the inflation rate. Those whose income in the previous year had reached a certain standard cannot receive it. When you receive a public pension, etc., the allowance will only be paid partially, or will not be paid. For further information, ask at the municipal office in your area.3-3 Special Child Rearing Allowance (for parents of children with disabilities)This is a benefit for parents and guardians in households where children are under 20 years old and have physical or mental disabilities.* If the income of the parents in the previous year reached a certain level, the allowancewill not be provided. For further information, ask at the municipal office in your area.Benefit amount* In FY2020 (the amount varies every year in linked with prices)In case of children with extremely severe disabilities (equivalent to Disability Grade 1 for the basic pension)Per child 52,500 yen/monthIn case of children with severe disabilities (equivalent to Disabilities Grade 2 for the basic pension)Per child 34,970 yen/month3-4 Severe Disability PremiumThis is an extra allowance to help children and young persons under 20 who have severe physical or mental disabilities and need consistent nursing care.* If a qualified person had an income at a certain level in the previous year, the premiumwill not be granted. Contact your municipal office for more details.Benefit amount* In FY2020 (the amount varies every year linked to retail prices): 14,880 yen/month




Certification for Persons with Disabilities


Welfare for persons with disabilities
4-1 Certification for Persons with Disabilities
If a person has physical, intellectual or mental disabilities, a Certification for Persons with Disabilities is issued according to the grade of his or her disability as a certificate. With this certification, a tax reduction and discounts on transportation fares are applied.
Types of Certification for Persons with Disabilities
Physical disability certificate: for persons who have permanent physical disabilities Intellectual disability certificate: for persons who have mental disabilities
Mental disability certificate: for those have mental disabilities which cause them difficulties and limitations in social life
☛ See the following URL for details: https://www.mhlw.go.jp/stf/seisakunitsuite/bunya/hukushi_kaigo/ shougaishahukushi/techou.html
For details, please contact your local municipal office.




Public services for persons and children with disabilities


Various types of public services, such as nursing and rehabilitation training, are available for persons with disabilities.
Nursing and development support are also available for children and young persons with disabilities.
For further information on public services for persons with disabilities, contact your municipal office.




Public Assistance


Upon meeting the requirements indicated in 5-1, if a household’s income does not reach the minimum standard of living, public support may be given to bridge the difference between the income and the standard.
* The minimum standard of living is determined by the Minister of Health, Labour and Welfare.
Foreign nationals who fulfill the following condition may be eligible for the assistance: Persons whose status of residence does not have any limitations on their activities inJapan: Permanent Resident, Spouse or Child of Japanese National, Spouse or Child of Permanent Resident, Long-Term ResidentFor more details, please consult the municipal office in your area.




Requirements for Public Assistance


(1) Utilizing Assets
If you have any savings or land/buildings that are not in use, turn them into cash to cover your living expenses.
(2) Utilizing Skills
If you can work, make the best of your skills.
(3) Other Allowances
If you are eligible for pensions and/or any allowances, apply for them.




Types of assistance


The types of assistance will be determined according to what is necessary to live.









Tax

Non-Japanese citizens and tax


Non-Japanese citizens under the following conditions must pay tax in Japan:
Persons who earn income in Japan;
→As a rule, individual income tax is imposed on income.
Persons who have a registered address in Japan as of January 1.
→Individual Inhabitant Taxes are also imposed. (The amount of the tax varies in
accordance with your income in the prior year.)
Consumption tax is also imposed when you stay at a hotel or eat at a restaurant,etc.
● Key Point National Tax and Local Tax
Chapter 8 Tax
Japanese taxes are divided into National and Local Taxes, depending on to whom the tax is paid.
Taxes paid to the national government, such as Individual Income Tax, are called National Taxes.
Taxes paid to the prefectural or municipal government, such as Individual Inhabitant Tax, are called Local Taxes.




Individual Income Tax


Individual Income Tax is a tax imposed on personal income earned in a year starting from January 1 through December 31.
The tax is calculated as follows:
1. Gross income - Expenses, etc. = Net income (A)
2. Net income (A) − Deductions (see 1-3) = Taxable income (B)
3. Taxable income (B) × tax rate
The tax rate gradually rises along with the increase taxable income (B).




Taxpayer and scope of personal taxable income


The scope of individual income tax varies according to the following types of residence: (1) Residents
Persons who have a registered address (“domicile”) in Japan, or who have had a residence for over a year until the present (except (2) Non-Permanent Residents) are termed Residents.
→ All worldwide income of Residents that is earned inside and outside of Japan is
subject to income tax.
● Key Point “Domicile” and “Residence”
(2) Non-Permanent Residents
Within the term “Residents” as defined in (1) above, those who do not have Japanese nationality and for whom the time they have had a domicile or residence in Japan within the period of past 10 years is five years or less in total are termed Non-Permanent Residents.
→ 1Their income other than earned outside Japan, and 2 their income earned outside Japan as long as it is paid within Japan or is remitted to Japan is subject to income tax.
(3) Non-Residents
Persons who are not qualified as Residents are termed Non-Residents.
→ Only their income earned within Japan, such as salary, wages, other payments given for your work, etc. is subject to income tax.




Filing a tax return and payment


Income tax is self-assessed, with the annual income and the tax to be imposed on it calculated. Taxpayers submit a tax return to the tax office to determine the tax obligation while adjusting the withheld amount (see 1-4) within the due date. This procedure is called filing a tax return. (1) Persons who need to file a tax return
The majority of persons who receive salaries and wages do not need to file a tax return, since their tax obligations are determined by their income tax being withheld (see 1-4) and later adjusted in the final salary paid to them in a calendar year (see 1-4).
However, persons to whom any of the following apply must file a tax return:
Persons who have one employer and their total amount of their income other than salary income and severance allowance exceeds 200,000 yen;
Persons who have more than one employer and the total amount of salary income which has not been adjusted in their year’s final salary and income other than salaries and severance allowance exceeds 200,000 yen; or
Persons who have income from business or stock trading and are required to pay income tax according to the calculation.
If there is any tax to pay, taxpayers have to pay such amount in full by the due date. (The tax office will not send any notifications regarding this.)
The following methods can be used to pay tax:
1. Automatic account transfer from your domestic bank account
2. Online payment via Direct Payment or Internet banking
3. Online payment with your credit card; or
4. Over-the-counter payment with a tax payment slip (at banks, post offices,
convenience stores or tax offices)
(2) Persons who are eligible for a tax refund by filing a tax return
If it is found out that you are eligible for a deduction (see 1-3) from your withheld tax (see 1-4), you can receive a refund of the tax you have overpaid by filing a tax return. The refund will be remitted to your account at a post office or a bank.
If you have not overpaid income tax due to withheld tax or the like, you cannot receive a tax refund.
(3) When to file a tax return and pay tax
Income tax consultation and payments for every tax year must be done between February 16 and March 15 of the following year.
※ Tax office do not accept, as a general rule, consultations or the submission of
tax return on days they are closed (weekends, national holidays, etc.). The due date for income tax payment is March 15.
※ If this due date (March 15) falls on weekends or national holidays, it will be extended to the following business day.
(4) When you leave Japan
If you leave Japan and unregister your Japanese address, your income tax must be adjusted in your year’s final salary while you are in Japan.
If you need to file a tax return due to one of cases in (1) applying to you, you have to do so and pay any tax you owe before you leave Japan.
If you carry out any procedures relating to tax payment after you leave Japan, you have to appoint a tax agent who resides in Japan and send a “Declaration Naming a Person to Administer the Taxpayer’s Tax Affairs for Income Tax and Consumption Tax” to the tax office with jurisdiction. The agent will take care of the procedures after you leave Japan.
1-3 Major tax deductions
Taking each individual’s circumstances into consideration, a certain amount of deductions is applicable on your income tax calculation (see the formula in 1 above) if you fulfill the following:
In case of a Non-Resident (see 1-1 (3)), only limited types of deductions are applicable.
(1) If you give economic support to your family;
In the case where you financially support a family member, and the total
income of such dependent is 480,000 yen or less(380,000 yen or less in or before 2019), you can recieve a certain amount of incomededuction on your income tax calculation.
If your dependent family member is Non-Resident (see 1-1(3)), you have to attach the following documents to a tax return form or show them when you submit your tax return form at a tax office: 1. Family registration (a copy of your family’s koseki); and
2. Remittance slips or other documents to certify that you support your
non-resident family member.
(2) If you are married;
If you are married and satisfy certain requirements, a certain amount of
deduction is applicable to your income.
If your spouse is Non-Resident (See 1-1(3),) you have to attach the following documents to a tax return form or show them when you submit the tax return form at a tax office:
1. A marriage certificate (a copy of family registration, etc.); and
2. Remittance slips or other documents to certify that you support your
non-resident spouse.
(3) If you pay social insurance;
If you pay social insurance (Health insurance, National Pension, Employee’s
pension insurance, etc.) for yourself, your spouse and other family members who depend on you for their livelihood, you can receive an income deduction depending on the amount of the insurance premiums.
(4) If you pay life insurance premiums; or
If you pay a certain amount of life insurance premiums, long term medical care
insurance premiums and/or pension insurance premiums, you can receive a certain amount of income deduction.
(5) If you have spent a significant amount of medical expenses;
If the total amount of medical expenses spent by a taxpayer, his spouse and/or
other family members who depend on such taxpayer for their livelihood exceeds a certain amount, you can receive an income deduction depending on the amount of the medical expenses.




Withholding and year-end adjustment


Persons who receive salaries and wages pay income tax in the withholding tax system. When their salaries or wages are paid, income tax is subtracted (withheld) from them by their employer.
Tax is adjusted in the final salary or wage in a calendar year (year-end adjustment).
A withholding record with the annual gross salary printed on it is issued by an employer and provided to the salary receiver.




Special cases by Income Tax Convention


If your country and Japan have concluded an income tax convention, your income tax may be relieved by fulfilling certain requirements.




Definition of Individual Inhabitant Taxes


This is a tax you are obliged to pay to the prefectural and municipal offices with jurisdiction over your address as of January 1.
Individual Inhabitant Taxes consist of an income-graded component which is assessed on your income for the preceding year and a flat-rate component whose amount is regardless of your amount of income.
The Individual Inhabitant Taxes to be paid to your prefecture will be paid to your municipal government together with the one for your municipality.




How to pay the Individual Inhabitant Taxes


There are two ways of paying:
1 Special collection: The company that employs you withholds your
Individual Inhabitant Taxes from your salary and pays it to your municipal government. As a rule, employees themselves do not need to pay the taxes to the municipal office.
2 Ordinary collection: When you receive a written tax demand from your local government, go to the government office yourself with the demand you have received and the amount of taxes
indicated on it. (※)
(※) You may pay your tax at the post office or a convenience store. See the instructions indicated on the letter from your local government.




Miscellaneous


Please note the following regarding Individual Inhabitant Taxes:
1 2
3
The taxes must be paid to the municipality where you have had your registered address on January 1. Even if you leave Japan on January 2 or after, you still have an obligation to pay the tax.
When those who pay the taxes by special collection (see 2-21) terminate their employment, the outstanding tax balance must be paid by ordinary collection (see 2-22). However, there is another way to pay them to your municipality, namely, requesting that the company that employed you withhold the taxes from any salary or severance allowance that would be paid to you.
If you cannot pay your Individual Inhabitant Taxes before you leave Japan, you must appoint a tax agent who resides in Japan and will pay the tax for you, and notify the municipal office of such perso




Consumption Tax


The Consumption Tax at the rate of is 10% (Standard tax rate) is applied to the purchase of goods and services in Japan. In the case of the purchase of food and drink excluding alcoholic drink and dining out, the rate of 8% (Reduced tax rate) is applied.




Automobile Tax / Light Motor Vehicle Tax


(1) Automobile Tax / Light Motor Vehicle Tax with an environmental performance-
based tax reduction
When you purchase an automobile or a light automobile
When you purchase an automobile or a light automobile, you have to pay Automobile Tax or Light Motor Vehicle Tax with an environmental performance-based tax reduction.
(The amount of the environmental performance-based tax reduction is determined
according to an automobile’s or light automobile’s fuel efficiency and other elements.)
(2) Automobile Tax / Light Motor Vehicle Tax and tax reduction according to engine size
If you have an automobile
Persons who have an automobile (engine size over 660 cc) as of April 1, are obliged to pay Automobile Tax, a tax reduction will be applied according to its engine size. (※) (The amount of the tax reduction is calculated based on the engine size and other elements.)
(※) Instructions regarding the tax amount and payment method are given on a letter sent to you by the prefectural government.
If you have a light automobile
Persons who have a light automobile as of April 1 whose engine size is 660 cc or less are obliged to pay Light Motor Vehicle Tax, a tax reduction will be applied according to its engine size. (※)
(The tax amount is calculated based on the engine size, etc.)
(※) Instructions regarding the tax amount and payment method are given on a letter sent to you by the municipal office.




Vehicle Weight Tax


When you have your automobile or light automobile inspected
Vehicle Weight Tax is imposed according to the weight of your vehicle when it is inspected.




Property Tax


You are obliged to pay property tax if you have any of the following as of January 1 each year:
1 Land;
2 Buildings; or
3 Depreciable assets.
You have to declare the depreciable assets you have.
The amount to pay will be calculated by the municipal office based on the values of the assets.
Pay the tax to the municipal office where your asset is located.




National Taxes


(1) By Telephone (Call center)
English speakers will answer general inquiries about National Taxes at the following Tax Payment Call Centers:
Tokyo Regional Taxation Bureau 03-3821-9070
Osaka Regional Taxation Bureau (transfer to the Call Center from the main number) 06-6941-5331
Nagoya Regional Taxation Bureau 052-971-2059
(2) Tax Answers (FAQ on taxes)
☛ You can find FAQs and general answers to them via the link below:
https://www.nta.go.jp/english/taxes/index.htm
(3) National Tax Agency website
This website provides useful information on filing and paying national taxes.
☛ Click the link below or scan the QR code for further information: https://www.nta.go.jp/english/index.htm
Search





Inquiries on Local Tax


(1) Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications website
☛ What is the resident tax? (For foreign residents working in Japan)
https://www.soumu.go.jp/main_sosiki/jichi_zeisei/czaisei/c zaisei_seido/individual- inhabitant-tax.html
(2) Ask at a prefectural or municipal office in your area for more details.





Traffic

Traffic rules


As members of society, we are all obligated to obey traffic rules to ensure the safe and smooth movement of the many vehicles and pedestrians using our streets.




Safety guidelines for pedestrians



(1) Walking on roads and sidewalk
Generally,pedestrians shuoud walk on the right side of the street so that vehicles approach on their left.
Pedestrians should keep to the right side of the road.
Pedestrians should use the sidewalks or stay within the lines marked for walking on the road when they are available.
(2)Rules for crossing the street Crossing the street safely
Pedestrians should cross the street using the nearest traffic light intersection or pedestrian crossings,overpass or underpass.
Pedestrians should never cross a street that is marked with signs that prohibit crossing. Pedestrians should clearly show a driver their intention to cross the street by raising their hand or looking to the driver and cross the street only after the safety is confirmed.
Pedestrians should check that there are not any cars coming while crossing a street.
Rules of traffic lights
Green light : Pedestrians can proceed to cross the street.
Yellow or flashing green light: Pedestrians may not begin to cross the street;if pedestrians has already commenced crossing, he or she should either attempt to finish crossing quickly or turn back.
Red light: Pedestrians are prohibited from crossing the street.
Crossing streets that have traffic light buttons: Pedestrians should push the button to change the light to green,after which they can proceed to cross the street.
Crossing streets that have no traffic lights
Pedestrians should cross the street only after confirming there are no vehicles coming from either direction.
Before crossing the streets, pedestrians should stop and look in both directions to check for oncoming vehicles. If vehicles are approaching pedestrians should wait until they pass.
Pedestrians should continue looking both ways to check for oncoming vehicles when crossing the street, and walk straight ahead rather than diagonally.
Rules for rail crossings
Before walking over a rail crossing, pedestrians should stop and look both ways to make sure it is safe.
Pedestrians should never attempt to enter a rail crossing when the warning bell is sounding or the crossing bar is on its way down.
(3) Walking at night
Pedestrians should wear brightly colored clothing or reflective materials at night
When walking on the street at night, pedestrians shoud wear brightly colored clothing such as white or yellow as well as accessories with reflective materials or LED lights to ensure that drivers can easily see them.




Safety guidelines for cyclists


(1) Five rules to follow to ensure safety when riding a bicycle
Rule 1. In principle,cyclists should ride on the street and use sidewalks only in exceptional cases
Bicycles are classified as vehicles, so as a general rule,cyclists should use the street. Cyclists should use designated bicycle paths when they are available.
Cyclists should use the lanes markded for bicycles on sidewalks or roads when they are available.
Children under 13, adults 70 and over, and people with physical disabilities are permittd to ride a bicycle on the sidewalk.
Rule 2. Cyclists should ride on the left side of the street
Cyclists must not obstruct pedestrians if riding inside the lines marking pedestrian paths.
Rule 3. Cyclists must reduce speed on sidewalks and give pedestrians the right of way When passing pedestrians on sidewalks, cyclists should reduce speed enough to enable a sudden stop.
Cyclists should stop riding if there is a risk of obstructing passing pedestrians on sidewalks.
Rule 4. Cyclists must obey safety rules
Cyclist are prohibited from riding under the influence of alcohol. Riding double is prohibited.
Riding side by side is prohibited.
Cyclists must use bicycle lights at night.
Cyclist must obey traffic lights at intersections and check for safety after coming to a
full stop.
Rule 5. Children must wear a bicycle helmet
Parents and guardians must ensure that children wear a bicycle helmet in the following cases;
・ When a child under the age of 6 is riding in the children’s seat of a bicycle.
・ When a child under the age 13 is riding a bicycle.
Other regulations
Cyclists must not use umbrellas or talk on mobile phones when riding.
In order to protect a head, not only children, but also people of all generations are recommended to wear a helmet.
Cyclists are recommended to purchase personal accident insurance to be able to compensate for any damage or injury from a bicycle accident. Please keep in mind that you are required to purchase insurance in certain areas such as Tokyo or Osaka.
☛ See the following URL for details: https://www.jitensha-kyogikai.jp/project/#insurance-promotion
(2) Using intersections
When making a right-hand turn
At intersections with traffic lights
When the light turns green, the cyclist should cross the intersection in a straight direction and come to a stop on the opposite side with the bicycle facing right. When the light of the intersecting street turns green, the cyclist should proceed in a straight direction after looking both ways to check for safety.
At intersections without traffic lights
The cyclist should look behind to check for safety, cross the intersection in a straight direction, then slow down to make a right-hand turn,and check for oncoming cars before proceeding.
When making a left-hand turn
The cyclist should make sure not to obustruct pedestrians crossing the street.
“Stop” sign
Cyclists must come to a full stop at stop signs, and look both ways to check for oncoming cars before proceeding. Cyclists should come to a full stop at intersections where visibility is poor, narrow roads meet wide streets, or where sidewalks come to an end, and then look both ways to check for safety before proceeding.
Designated lines for bicycles
When an intersection has designated lines for bicycles,cyclists should ride within the
lines.




Safety guidelines for drivers (automobiles and motorcycles)


You need a driver’s license to drive.
You must present your driver’s license when asked by a police officer in the event of an accident or a violation of traffic rules.
You must drive on the left.
When driving near pedestrians and cyclists, drivers should slow down and make sure
to keep a safe distance between them and the vehicle.
NEVER drive after drink.
It is also prohibited to lend your car to someone who is under the influence of alcohol, to encourage someone who is going to drive to drink, and to ask somebody who has drunk alcohol to drive.
Drivers and other passengers must fasten their seat belts.
Young children under 6 must sit on a child seat.
You must not use a mobile phone while driving.
☛ See the following URL for details: https://www.npa.go.jp/english/bureau/traffic/index.html




Driver’s license


One of the following three valid driver’s licenses is required to drive a car (including motorcycles) and a motorized bicycle in Japan:
Chapter 9 Traffic
1. 2.
3.
*
*
Japanese driver’s license;
International driving permit (issued by the countries who signed the 1949 Geneva Conventions and is in the official format); or
Foreign driver’s license issued in the following countries with a Japanese translation certified by the embassy of your country, etc.:
(Seven countries and areas: Estonia, Switzerland, Germany, France, Belgium, Monaco and Taiwan)
A moped is a type of motorized bicycle, so you have to have one of the licenses mentioned in 1. to 3. above to ride one.
Regarding 2. and 3., the permit is valid for a maximum of one year.
☛ See the following URL for details: https://www.npa.go.jp/english/bureau/traffic/index.html




How to get a Japanese driver’s license


There are several ways to get a Japanese driver’s license as follows: Getting a Japanese license by taking a driver’s license test
i. You must pass the aptitude, skills and knowledge examination at a Driver’s License Center, etc.
ii. If you take a complete course of driving lessons at a designated driving school, you will be exempted from taking a skills examination.
How to convert a foreign driver’s license to a Japanese one
i. If a foreign driver’s license holder is approved as having sufficient knowledge
of road rules and practical driving skills, he or she will be exempted from taking
knowledge and skills examination.
ii. After being licensed in a country, you must have resided for at least an additional
three months there.
iii. Your application must be submitted at a Driver’s License Center under the
jurisdiction of the prefectural police in your area.
iv. For more details on the documents required for the application, please ask at a
Driver’s License Centers.




How to renew a Japanese driver’s license


Renewal of the driver’s license
A Japanese driver’s license has a validity period.
When the renewal time approaches, a notice will be sent to your registered address as a postal card. Renew your license in time.
If you do not renew your driver’s license, you are not allowed to drive.
How to change your registered address
If there is any change with regard to your name or address etc, notify a police station near you of that fact.
Further details such as which documents you will need are available at a police station near you.
2-3 Penalty point system
When a driver violates traffic rules or causes an accident, penalty points will be given. A driver’s license may be suspended or revoked based on the sum of the points accumulated over the last three years.




Motor vehicle registration


Motor vehicles cannot be used unless they are registered. When there is any change to the registered information, such as change of the owner or owner’s address, or when the vehicle is no longer used in Japan the registration must be accordingly updated.
(1) When to register and types of registration Registration for a unregistered vehicle
When you start to use a unregistered vehicle → Initial registration
Registrations for an already-registered vehicle
When the name or address of the owner change → Registration of alteration When the owner changes → Registration of transfer
In case of disassembly or export of a vehicle → Registration of deletion
(2) Where to register
Registration can be done at 91 bureaus of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT) or Automobile Inspection & Registration offices around Japan.
If you have any questions about registration, please ask at an MLIT bureau or Automobile Inspection & Registration office near you.
☛ Information on MLIT bureaus in Japan: https://www.mlit.go.jp/jidosha/kensatoroku/ans_system/help02.htm




Parking Space Certificate


To own an automobile, you as the owner have to have a parking space. Therefore, when you purchase one or when you move and change your address, you have to register your car and have a certificate of parking space issued by the police station with jurisdiction over the location of parking space.
In case of a light motor vehicle, you must notify the police station with jurisdiction over the location.
This certification is necessary in Tokyo metropolitan 23 wards, cities, towns and some villages. Certification for light motor vehicles is required in the Tokyo Metropolitan 23 wards and some cities.
For more information, please contact the police station with jurisdiction over the parking location.




Vehicle Safety Inspection (including some types of motorcycles)


Automobile owners have to have their motor vehicles inspected periodically as required by law.
There are two ways to have your car inspected:
1. Carrying to Service garage
About 90% of automobile owners in Japan nowadays have an inspection performed at an authorized service garage. To request an inspection, ask at a service garage with blue sign (designated service garage), yellow sign or green sign (certified service garage) near you.
2. By yourself at an MLIT bureau
About 10% of the automobile owners in Japan nowadays maintain their automobile by themselves and take it to an MLIT bureau for a safety inspection. Inspection can be carried out at 93 MLIT bureaus (89 for Kei-vehicles) located across the country. For further information on the inspection, please ask at an MLIT bureau near you.
☛ MLIT bureau locator https://www.mlit.go.jp/jidosha/kensatoroku/ans_system/help02.htm
☛ Information on the Kei-Vehicles https://www.keikenkyo.or.jp/procedures/procedures_000134.html
After your motor vehicle passes its periodical inspection, a certificate and a sticker on which the inspection expiration date is printed will be issued. Put the sticker on the windshield, and make sure to carry the certificate whenever you drive.




Car Insurance


(1) Compulsory Automobile Liability Insurance (CALI) What is CALI?
CALI is an insurance mandated for all registered vehicles, including automobiles and motorbikes, to cover provide relief to the victims of traffic accidents.
If someone gets injured or dies in an accident, insurance benefit will be paid from CALI.
It is prohibited by law to drive an automobile or motorcycle without CALI.
If you cause an accident resulting in injuries or death without CALI, you will have to pay a very large amount of medical expenses and compensation by yourself.
☛ See the following URL for details: https://www.mlit.go.jp/jidosha/anzen/04relief/index.html
Where to buy CALI
CALI is available at the following:
i. Insurance companies (mutual aid associations), branches and dealers
ii. Car and motorcycle dealers
iii. For mopeds and motorcycles, CALI can be purchased at Post Offices (some do not sell CALI), some insurance companies (mutual aid associations), online or at convenience stores.
* If you have any inquiries, ask at a location close to you that deals in CALI.
(2) Voluntary Insurance
CALI does not cover property damage such as a damaged vehicle. Voluntary Insurance is for covering what CALI does not.
Differences between CALI and voluntary insurance are as follows: