The Japan Pension Service, which is administered by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, has a chequered history. In May 2007, the Democratic Party of Japan exposed a huge scandal, showing that as pension records had been transferred to computer, 50 million people who had paid insurance prior to 1997 could not be matched with any citizen on the computerized database. Even by 2010, the majority of these pension funds still hadn’t been matched to the people who paid them.
This resulted in a certain distrust from citizens, who increasingly feel that paying their National Pension Premiums is useless. Furthermore as the population ages, pensionable age is pushed further and further into old age, many young people feel they will never actually receive the pension funds they are currently paying.
Only 56% of citizens actually pay their National Pension Premiums, despite there having been a law in place since 2010 that says the government can forcibly collect these payments. While in the past this law has rarely been applied, now the government is suggesting that it be widely enforced, with those who refuse to pay being at risk of having their assets seized.
This has drawn a wide reaction from netizens, most of whom seem to have little faith in the national pension system as it currently stands.
From Yomiuri Shimbun:
Pension Non-Payers To Be Sent Demand Notices Warning Of Seizures
On December 12, the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare consolidated a policy in which demand notices warning of asset seizures would be sent to all non-payers who fail to pay their national pension premiums by the designated deadline.
The proposal will be presented to a meeting of the expert committee of the social security advisory panel.
When the demand notice is delivered, non-payers will be subject to pay back-payments. However, if these are paid by the deadline designated in the demand notice, then asset seizures will not be carried out.
Currently, demand notices are only sent out to a portion of non-payers, but the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare will deal with this by increasing the number of Japan Pension Service officials.
Comments from 2ch.net:
Well, you reap what you sow w
Hah, but they can’t even ensure that you get the pension! w
If they send out notices to everyone who doesn’t pay this, then the postal costs of sending the demand notices alone will come to a huge sum.
Come on, this is despotic.
The thing with these pensions is that every person who is 40 or under now will never get 100% of their pension.
Make enrollment voluntary!
Anyway, even if we try to get it, they’ll say it’s only from age 75 onwards, right?
You have to be fucking kidding.
We should have the freedom to not pay pensions and stuff if we don’t need them!
It’s a fraudulent system when even if you pay the entire pension premium,
you won’t get a single yen if you die before you can receive it.
Among those bastards who aren’t paying, there won’t even be any decent assets to seize, will there?
Isn’t it weird that although there are people who get pensions even though they never paid into them, and there are people who receive social security payments that amount to much more than a pension, that you get your assets seized because you haven’t kept up with payments?
Are pensions a form of tax?
Comments from Twitter:
Glad I’m a salaryman.
Well what can you do. They should still make those who really can’t pay it exempt though.
Still no explanation for their operational failures when it comes to pension money, eh?
I don’t like this…Those people who’ve stuck to their payments should request a waiver!
Things are getting tighter and tighter.
Please seize TEPCO’s assets first!
They really should do this. It’s the same as tax, paying it is mandatory. In order to do away with the current situation, where people who pay their pensions earnestly are the ones who are inconvenienced, then this kind of thing is the right thing to do. I actually think that they’re late in doing it.
I bet most of these are youngsters. They’re just going to be forced to pay these pensions, even though the way things are going pensions will certainly go bust in the future and they’ll never get any of it back (bitter laugh).
Before that happens, they should put the knife to pensions and medical fees, and create a sustainable system. From beginning to end, this country is pandering to its elderly and snatching from its young.
I always thought it would come to this when the country was in severe financial difficulties.