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Collected Item: “Benefit during COVID-19 in Japan”

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Benefit during COVID-19 in Japan

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Before the 100,000yen per person stimulus payment, Japan had a different plan. Originally, the plan was to give 300,000-yen stimulus payment to households with reduced revenue. However, this had many issues. To begin with, who can receive the stimulus payment was very narrow and hard to understand. The measurement of reduced revenue was based on who was considered as the「世帯主」meaning the head of the household.

If the income of the head of household from February to June due to the spread of the new corona infection has…

(1) Decreased and becomes the resident tax exemption level

(2) Decreased by more than half and becomes less than twice the resident tax exemption level

The Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications decided that single-person households would be considered as tax-exempt households if their monthly income after the decrease was 100,000 yen or less, in order to make the stimulus payment conditions uniform nationwide. As one person is increased in the household, the standard monthly income increases by 50,000 yen. The problem was that this only covers 20% of the whole citizens/residents and cannot cover the majority. Other problems were the fact that the stimulus payment is based on the income of the head of the household. In modern days, it is normal for both husband and wife to work and especially in Japan, it is hard to just live with an income of one person. Therefore, even though the head of the household’s income did not decrease for example for the husband, if the wife’s income has significantly decreased, it will cause problems. The nuisance of head of the household is considered to be a man/husband in Japan and hence using the word 世帯主/head of the household is a problem. Finally, the problem of this stimulus payment plan is that the money is given to the head of the household. A simple calculation will indicate that a single-person household can receive 300,000 yen per person, but a four-person household can only receive 75,000 yen per person. This may create a sense of unfairness. Also, if the head of the household receives the stimulus payment, it may not be distributed properly to all household members. In particular, due to COVID-19, there is an increase in cases of domestic violence and child abuse and these victims will have trouble receiving the money.

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Stimulus payment, flawed, Japan

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