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Tuesday, May 11, 2004

LIFELINES

Insurance, pension cash and divorce


Health Insurance

I have been in Japan for almost 6 years and I have paid into the social health insurance system during my 3 years on the JET Program. After I had finished JET, I dropped out of the system and have not enrolled in the national health insurance system.

If I was to enroll in the national health insurance now, would I be required to make contributions retrospectively dating from 2002 to now in addition to this year's payments? I'm currently enrolled in Global Health Insurance.

The rule for re-entering the national health insurance plan is that you have to pay up for the past two years.

At the same time, this is usually a "case by case" basis with the various local governments, with many variables coming into play, including time spent living overseas.

The best thing to do is to go to your local city office, explain to them the situation and they will let you know how much you need to pay up to get enrolled again.

Pension Payments

I have been working in a local consulting company in Utsunomiya, Tochigi. I have been paying a pension premium every months.

After completing 25 years of contributions in order to claim a pension, if I go back to my country, how will I get my pension? Will they send pension to my country's bank account every month or year? Do I need to come Japan to get my pension every month or year?

After you have paid up your minimum your pension will be put into a bank account for you. You may designate a bank account overseas.

Remember many Japanese too retire overseas and so set up the same system. These days, many have a bank account in Japan that allows them to withdraw cash overseas.

Citibank, for example has an account that allows you to withdraw cash overseas through the Plus system.

You can check it out at www.citibank.co.jp

From our readers

Gavin writes: For more information on the topic of divorce in Japan I suggest the following Web site, which is very comprehensive and resourceful: www.crcjapan.com/en/

Quickies

For a good hospital for the international community in the Kanto area check out the Kameda Medical Center homepage at www.kameda.com

Printing

Need quick printing done? Talk to Mr. Okusa at Matsuo Printing. You can reach them on (03) 3432-1321 or at www.mprint.co.jp

Haircuts

Looking for someone in Japan who can cut your hair who has experience with non-Japanese hair? A new shop, Liason, in Ebisu, can be reached at (03) 3461-1919. Talk to Mr. Kagawa.

Ken Joseph Jr. directs The Japan Helpline at www.jhelp.com or 0570-000-911 Send your queries, questions, problems and posers, to: lifelines@japantimes.co.jp


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