Created for expats living in Japan

Child Allowance System (Jidō Teate) in Japan

The Japanese child allowance (Jidō Teate - 児童手当) is paid to those raising children aged 0 to 15 years. The benefits depend on the annual household income and, in addition to the child allowance provided by the government, some municipalities also have their own child allowance system.

In this article, you can learn who is eligible for the child allowance and how to receive it.

Who is Eligible for the Child-Support Allowance?

The Japanese child allowance is payable to those who are raising a child (children) until the child graduates from junior high school (until the first 31 March after the child's 15th birthday).

How to Calculate the Child Allowance

The amount of the benefits is per person, per month.

Under 3 years old

¥15,000/month, per child

3 years old to the age before completion of primary school

¥10,000/month, per child

¥15,000 for the 3rd* and onwards

Junior high school student

¥10,000/month, per child

Families exceeding the provided income limit

¥5,000/month, per child

If the income of the person raising a child is above the income limit and below the maximum income limit (see below), a flat monthly allowance of ¥5,000 is paid.

The term "3rd and onwards" refers to the 3rd and subsequent children in care before high school graduation (until the first 31 March after the child's 18th birthday).

Income Limit and Maximum Income Limit

If the income of the person raising a child is less than [1] (income limit) in the table below, the above-mentioned amount will be paid.

If the income is above [1] and below [2] (maximum income limit), a flat monthly allowance of JPY 5,000 per child will be paid.

If the income is above [2], no child allowance will be paid.

Application for the Benefits

Application procedures are handled at your local municipal office. If the municipality approves the application, the child allowance will begin to be paid in the month following the month of application. We advise to apply as soon as possible.

When your baby is born

You must apply to the municipality of your current address within 15 days from the day after the date of birth. If the mother is temporarily away from her current address due to a home birth, etc., do not forget to apply to the municipality of her current address within 15 days.

When you change your address to another city

You must apply to the municipality of the new address within 15 days from the day after you move in.

Required documents for application

There are some documents such as a copy of the applicant's health insurance card, bank account number etc. Please check with your local municipal office for details in advance.

When will the Child Allowance be Paid?

The child allowance is paid in June, October and February each year, up to the respective previous month.

Other Conditions

If a child lives abroad

In principle, the allowance is paid when the child lives in Japan (if the child lives abroad to study and meets certain requirements as below, the child is eligible for the allowance).

If a child lives abroad (does not have a domicile in Japan), as a general rule, the allowance for that child will not be paid.

However, exceptions may be made to the child allowance if the student resides abroad for a reason of studying abroad and meets all the following requirements.

(i) The child must have had a continuous residence in Japan for more than 3 years prior to the day when he/she no longer has a resident address in Japan.

(ii) The child must reside abroad for the purpose of receiving an education and not live with his/her parents (or guardian of minors, if any).

(iii) The child must have moved out of Japan within 3 years of the date of the move.

In other cases, such as when a child returns to Japan after studying abroad for a short period of time, and then returns abroad to study again within 3 years, he/she may be eligible for the allowance even if he/she does not meet the requirements in (i) above.

If parents are separated due to divorce proceedings, etc.

If their parents are living separately due to divorce proceedings, etc., priority will be given to the person living with the child.

If parents live abroad

If their parents live abroad and designate a person in Japan who is taking care of the child, the payment will be made to that person (the person designated by the parents).

For further details, please contact the local authorities.

Child Allowance Funded by a Municipality

Note that some local authorities have their own payment conditions, for example, some local authorities provide child allowance until the age of 18. The Tokyo Metropolitan Government has also decided to distribute 5,000 yen per child until the age of 18 from the next financial year, without upper income limit.

For detailed conditions, please consult your local municipal office.

Donations of the Child Allowance

If you prefer not to receive all or a part of the Child Allowance, you can easily donate to your local municipality to support children's health and wellbeing. Please contact your local municipality for more information.