politics

Gov't to submit bill allowing more part-timers to join health insurance and pension programs

21 Comments

The ruling Democratic Party of Japan plans to submit a bill to the current Diet session which will enable more part-time workers to become eligible for health insurance and pension programs.

A task force met Tuesday to finalize the plan that calls for the minimum number of working hours for an employee to qualify for company health insurance to be lowered from the current 30 hours to 20 hours per week, once they have worked for the same company for at least 12 months, TV Asahi reported. The revised law will only apply to companies that employ at least 500 staff.

Employees who earn up to 940,000 yen will qualify to join health insurance and pension programs.

The labor ministry estimates that the new guidelines will enable at least 3.7 million non-permanent workers in Japan to join the programs. Companies currently pay about half an employee's pension premium.

After it is enacted, the bill will go into effect from fiscal 2016.

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21 Comments
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Good to be able to sustain welfare obligation to the aging society. But lets wait until the business community make their reaction. There is a monetary reason why companies chose to hire 'arubaito' of course.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

499 Part timers....that's the loop hole.

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Who pays for the insurance? Half employee/half company? I'm looking for 19-hour weeks on this one.

And a question:

Employees who earn up to 940,000 yen will qualify to join health insurance and pension programs.

940,000 is the maximum or the minimum? If it's the minimum, would it be: Employees who earn at least ... And if it's the maximum, would it be: Employees who earn at most ...

Actually, this law looks like it's targeting convenience stores, a major employer of part-time employees.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

2016? Gee, that will give a lot of these companies time to work out their loopholes around this. All you Ei-kai-wa employees beware. You may see your hours and/or wages drop in the near future to - ahem - cover costs of health-care and pension.

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Or they can hire the same person for 11 months and 30 days. Fire them, and re-hire them.

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Sounds to me like this is more about Government trying to get more people to pay into the mismanaged pyramid scheme that Japanese pension is.

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borschtMar. 14, 2012 - 09:18AM JST Actually, this law looks like it's targeting convenience stores, a major employer of part-time employees

And so it should, It infuriates me that these japanese women get married, give up their full-time job ,which fiscally contributed to society, and spend the next 30 years in a tax free hobby part time job. Fast forward to the age of 60 and they get all the benefits of a pension and medical care.

The tax burden in Japan relies too much on single full time workers and DINK couples.

Of course we all know that the softening of the tax burden will not be mirrored in the wage packet of the single full time workers and DINKS, the government will just waste the money on their pet pork projects, but that's a different issue altogether.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

How much will you have to pay if you earn e.g. Y1000000 per year? I have to pay about Y50000 per month, yet I am entitled to precisely nothing. What a scam.

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2016? Gee, that will give a lot of these companies time to work out their loopholes around this. All you Ei-kai-wa employees beware. You may see your hours and/or wages drop in the near future to - ahem - cover costs of health-care and pension.

I don't imagine that this would affect dispatch ALT comapnies and/or Eikawa companies. Most employees sign a 1 year contract, which technically isn't for an entire 365 days. Most begin early April and finish mid March.

Worst case scenario, the companies will just dish out 6 month contracts. Loop-hole found. Problem solved!

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if you replace the phrase " to become eligible for" in the 1st paragraph with "are being forced to join" then the story would be more accurate. Pffft!

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Awww... it's "allowing" them to pay into a system that will never be able to come close to paying them back. How kind.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

It's stupid having different health insurance and pension schemes depending on what a person's job is. Revamp the whole thing so that everyone is eligible/liable to join the same scheme, and take away the company contribution so that it's a level playing field for all and improved welfare doesn't mean a brake on employment.

At the same time, fix politicians' salaries at no more than the national average, and let them have the same health insurance and pension as everyone else. They'd soon see to it that there was a substantial increase in the national average wage, and they'd fix the pension toot sweet.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Why would anybody in their right mind want to pay into these ripoff scams?

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@cleo, I agree with most of your ideas, except about the company contribution. I think that's necessary. A healthy insurance/pension system is one in which employers and employees both have a stake in each others' welfare.

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plasticmonkey - it's not a good idea to have different systems for company workers and the self-employed, contract workers, part-timers etc. Who has a stake in the welfare of non-company employees? Everyone should pay the same, adjusted for income. If companies want to add the amount they now pay in premiums onto salaries, that's fine; but people should know how much they're really paying.

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And so it should, It infuriates me that these japanese women get married, give up their full-time job ,which fiscally contributed to society, and spend the next 30 years in a tax free hobby part time job. Fast forward to the age of 60 and they get all the benefits of a pension and medical care.

That's because the men wanted it that way...

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How many insurance do we have to pay? Its like extortion that they made it legal!

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Japanese labor laws are the bomb. Different rules for different workers all around. And different rules depending on how many hours you work as well. It's a shitty patchwork of add-ons and outdated ideas about how to compensate people for their work.

If you work, no matter how few hours, you should be entitled to health care and pension. Period. This is achieved by taxing people a percentage of their income. Same percentage for everyone. It isn't more complicated than that.

I know Japan's so called "efficiency" is based on part-time work but it is no longer a sustainable system. Time to re-work and simplify it all.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I have to pay about Y50000 per month, yet I am entitled to precisely nothing. What a scam.

You get no health coverage for that? What country do you live in?

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Nessie: I pay about Y50000 per month for the pension; the medical insurance is extra. It's the pension that I won't be getting due to the 25 year contribution requirement. Sometimes they talk about changing that, but never do it.

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