Do you know that you will receive an allowance if you lose your job?

Hello, This is Yohji.
Japan has a system in which Job-seeker allowances are paid between the time you lose your job and the time you get a new job.
This system is well known to Japanese people, but foreigners living in Japan may not know it, so I will write this topic.
Actually, when I was young, I was helped by this system.
It may be a little difficult,
but Please read until the end as it is a system that will help you financially, especially if you are dismissed.

What is employment insurance system?

The employment insurance system(雇用保険制度 / こよう ほけん せいど) shall provide benefits which ensure displaced employees a stable life until they find a new job. This insurance also be provided to foreign employees.
* Although, this topic will focus on the basic allowances that will be paid while you are unemployed.

Employment insurance is managed and operated by the national government (Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare), and its administrative procedures and allowance payment services are carried out at public employment security offices (in Japan, called Hello Work / ハローワーク) in each region.

The main source of revenue is insurance premiums paid by participating business owners.
Hello Work also introduces jobs for free.

Persons eligible for employment insurance

These are the following conditions to apply for employment insurance.

  • People working in Japan (including foreigners)
  • Working hours are 20 hours or more per week
  •  Under 65 years old
  • Employed by a Japanese company
  • Continuously employed by the same company for 31 days or more

Employment insurance premiums will be deducted from your salary. Insurance premiums vary depending on the type of business and salary. You can look if you have unemployment insurance if the amount is displayed in the “Employment insurance premium”(雇用保険 / こようほけん) item on your salary statement.

Conditions for Job-seeker allowance and period until benefits

  • Must have employment insurance
  • The period of participation in employment insurance must be longer than the specified number of days.
    ▼Retirement for personal reasons: Must have been enrolled for a total of 12 months or more in the two years prior to the date of leaving the job.
    * Retirement for personal reasons: Quit the company because don’t like own job. Quit the company because had a job  wanted to do.
    ▼Retirement due to company reasons: Must have added at least 6 months in total for one year before the date of leaving the job.
    *Retirement due to company reasons: Unable to work due to bankruptcy of the company, dismissal due to personnel reduction, or illness.

In addition, it is the “state of unemployment” defined by the Public Employment Security Office (Hello Work) that “You have a positive intention to get a job and have the ability to get a job at any time, but you cannot get a job”. Is a prerequisite.

 How to apply for Job-seeker allowance

Necessary items

  • Proof of unemployment (-1 and -2)(離職票 / りしょくひょう)
    It is issued by the company and will be sent by mail after retirement.
  • Individual Number Card (called マイナンバーカード)
    If you do not have an Individual Number Card, you will need an Individual Number Notification Card and a photo ID (resident card, driver’s license, etc.)
  • Two ID photos (length 3 cm x width 2.5 cm)
  • Seal
  • Bankbook or cash card

If you do not receive it within 10 days from your retirement date, if the company does not issue a Proof of unemployment, or if you lose it, please contact Hello Work.

Flow of Job-seeker allowance application

Go to Hello Work
  • Monday to Friday (excluding holidays and year-end and New Year holidays) from 8:30 to 17:15
  • It is recommended that you go as soon as you receive the  Proof of unemployment from the company.

Please tell as follows at the reception counter.


I would like to apply unemployment benefits.(失業手当を申し込みたいのですが。 / しつぎょうてあてを もうしこみ たいのですが。)


I don’t speak Japanese, so I would like to consult in English.(日本語がうまくないので、英語で相談したいです。/ にほんごが うまくないので、えいごで そうだん したいです。)

Register for a job

You can also register on a computer equipped in Hello Work, but only Japanese formats may be available.
In that case, please fill in the written job application form prepared at the counter.
The entry method is explained in English, Tagalog, Portuguese, etc., and this PDF should help you.

Submit the Proof of unemployment to the counter

Receive the Unemployment Insurance Benefit Manual and go home.

Participate in the employment insurance beneficiary briefing session
  • The date and time will be specified by Hello Work, so please be sure to participate.
  • The briefing session takes about 2 hours.
  • Bring the Unemployment Insurance Benefit Manual, seal, and pens.

After attending the briefing session, you will receive your employment insurance eligibility certificate and unemployment certification report and go home.
At the briefing session, the staff will also tell you the date of unemployment certification.

Go to the Hello Work on the day of unemployment certification

The unemployment certification date is specified by Hello Work.
From the second time onward, the staff will ask you about the status of your job hunting activities.


Job hunting refers to job application and interviews.
Please note that the allowance will not be paid unless you are looking for a job.

Job-seekers allowance is deposited in the account
  • The allowance will be credited to your bank account 7 days after your eligibility date (or 2 months if you retire for your own reason).
    * Actually, it takes about one month from the application for the allowance to be transferred to your bank account.
  • Therefore, it is recommended that you go to Hello Work as soon as you receive the Proof of unemployment from the company.
    * Eligibility certification date: The date when the job application registration at Hello Work and submit Proof of unemployment to Hello Work.

After that, you must go to Hello Work on the day specified by Hello Work (every 4 weeks) in order to be eligible for eligibility.

Allowance benefit amount and benefit period

Calculation formula for the amount of benefits

Total wages paid monthly in the 6 months immediately before the day of leaving the job ÷ 180 × (50% ~ 80%)

1.2 million yen ÷ 180 × (50% ~ 80%) = 3,333 ~ 5,333 yen / day
3,333 ~ 5,333 yen / day x 30 days = 99,990 ~ 159,990 yen / month

Benefit period

The benefit period depends on whether the reason for leaving the job is due to company reasons or personal reasons.

Retirement for personal reasons
Retirement due to company reasons

Introduction of Hello Work with an interpreter

Hello Work is available all over Japan, and some of them have an interpreter. If you have trouble applying for an allowance or registering for a job, visit the nearest Hello Work office with an interpreter.
Interpreters are often available for a limited time, so call Hello Work, which has an interpreter, to make a appointment in advance.

Hello Work with an interpreter <2021/05 version>

The address of each office is not listed, but you can find the address by entering the phone number on Google map and searching.

Support this blog

This blog is run with your donations. If this article helps you, I would be grateful if you could support this blog in the form of a cup of coffee.


Employment insurance is a very important insurance that helps us financially in the event of unemployment.
First of all, please check if you can apply for employment insurance or if you have it.
The most important thing is not to give up your benefit application just because you don’t speak Japanese.
I also have an online community “useJapan” where foreigners living in Japan can consult with each other (free of charge).

Introduction and usage of the online community “useJapan”

If you have any problems in your life in Japan other than employment insurance, please feel free to contact me in the online community. I hope you can spend your time just for your happiness. I hope you can help me when I’m in trouble.

Reference contents

For Everyone Who Has Lost Their Job

For those who have completed the procedure

Proof of unemployment – 1
ID photo machine
Proof of unemployment – 2
the Public Employment Security Office (Hello Work)


Yoji Yoshimaru

There is no maximum salary cap. However, there is a maximum amount of payment according to age.
●Under 29 y-old : 6,815yen
●30 ~ 44 : 7,570yen
●45 ~ 59 : 8,330yen
●60 ~ 64 : 7,150yen

Gricelda Roytek

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