Unemployment Benefits (Shitsugyo Kyufu)

If you quit or lose your job, you can receive unemployment benefits until you find a new job.
You’ll receive 50 – 80% of your old salary.


1. You need to search for and find a new job quickly

2. If you quit your job because your company told you to quit:
You must have paid unemployment insurance (koyo hoken) for at least six of the past 12 months that you worked.

If you chose to quit your job:
You must have paid unemployment insurance for at least 12 of the past 24 months that you worked.

If you didn’t have unemployment insurance or worked as a freelancer, you can’t get unemployment benefits.


Ask the company where you were working for a “Statement of Unemployment for Insured Party” (koyo hoken hihokensha rishokuhyo)

Go your local Hello Work (public employment bureau) to apply for a qualification to receive benefits (jukyu shikaku kettei) and for a certificate stating you are searching for work (kyushoku no moshikomi)

<What You Need>
・Statement of Unemployment for Insured Party (get this from the company you worked for)
・Residence (zairyu) Card (see note)
・Documents that show your individual number (e.g., My Number (individual number) card)
・Personal seal (inkan)
・A bankbook or cash card in your name
・Two photos showing your face (3cm in height and 2.5cm in width)Note: If you are a Japanese citizen but don’t have a My Number card, you will need a document to prove your identity. Please ask for more information at Hello Work.


●When You Will Receive Money

If you quit your job because your company told you to quit: Seven days after you complete the procedures
If you chose to quit your job: Seven days after the above procedures + three months (see Note 1)

Note 1: People who choose to quit their job for any of the following reasons on or after February 25, 2020 only need to wait seven days:
1. Quit because a family member who lives with you contracted COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and needs nursing or nursing care
2. Other people at your workplace were infected with COVID-19, so you quit to avoid getting infected
3. Because you or a family member you live with has an underlying medical condition/is pregnant/elderly, so you quit to avoid infecting them with COVID-19
4. Quit because your children need taking care of because of COVID-19

If the above applies, but you haven’t gotten the money after seven days, please speak to your local Hello Work office.

●Length of Unemployment Benefits

You can receive money for a set number of days for a year (see Note 2) from the day after you were unemployed.
The number of days depends on the number of years you have worked in Japan.

Note 2: Benefits can be extended to more than one year in the following cases:
・If you don’t go to Hello Work to avoid being infected with COVID-19
・If you had symptoms that seemed like COVID-19
・If your children needed taking care of because of COVID-19


●Contact Information

Hello Work

Hello Work locations with interpreters (as of May 2020)


●Sample Documents

<Statement of Unemployment for Insured Party 1>


<Statement of Unemployment for Insured Party 2>



●Things to be Careful of:

If you don’t have a Statement of Unemployment for Insured Party, please get this from your company.

When you receive the Statement of Unemployment for Insured Party, select “Reason for Unemployment” (離職理由 (rishoku riyuu) – why you quit)

If you decided to quit, select “自己都合” (jiko tsugo)

If your company asked you to quit, select “会社都合” (kaisha tsugo)

Sometimes a company will say you chose to quit, even if they asked you to.

They might lie and say you can’t look for a new job if you select “会社都合” so please be careful.

Note: If you quit your job due to COVID-19, make sure the company writes this down.


<References and Sources> (Japanese)
Hello Work

Using Hello Work

Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare
There is an English version of “Rishoku Sareta Minasama e” (離職された みなさまへ).

Special measures for COVID-19 (Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare)

Articles on withnews and Yahoo! News (written by a member of POSSE)

アラビア語 インドネシア語 英語
韓国語 スペイン語 タイ語
タガログ語 中国語 ネパール語
ビルマ語 フランス語 ベトナム語
ポルトガル語 ロシア語 日本