How to Apply for Moratoriums on Taxes and Utilities

If you have trouble paying taxes and utility bills due to COVID-19, you can apply for moratorium. 

More and more people are furloughed, experienced a significant decrease in income etc. since our society has been severely affected by COVID-19 pandemic.

In response to the current economic fallout, infrastructure providers now grant moratoriums on taxes, water, gas, and electricity bills in cooperation with the Government of Japan and local municipalities. We introduce how you apply for them.

Moratorium on Taxes

How It Works

In case you have difficulty paying taxes, you can apply for a year-long moratorium at offices in charge of any issues with taxes,such as a tax office. Installment payment is available as another option.

During your moratorium, in addition, overdue tax (interests imposed on tax delinquency) will be reduced.

Terms and Conditions for Application

  • You are highly likely to have difficulties making ends meet or continuing business while paying taxes.
  • You apply for moratorium within 6 months after the tax payment deadline.
  • You have no unpaid taxes except the ones that you are applying for moratorium.

Emergency Moratorium 

In addition to the aforementioned moratorium that is available also at normal times, there is Emergency Moratorium newly established in response to COVID-19’s impact. This year-long moratorium comes with the exemption of overdue tax, and no security is required.

Terms and Conditions for Application

You are eligible for this moratorium if you are currently put in any of the situations below:

  1. Since February 2020, for over a month, your income has decreased by 20% or more compared to the same period last year due to COVID-19
  2. You are temporarily unable to pay taxes due to COVID-19

*You may be able to apply for the moratorium without payment of overdue tax if any of the conditions listed below apply to you: 

  • As a result of disinfection work at a facility with (a) coronavirus case(s), you have been forced to dispose of your work-tools, including assets and equipment.
  • You (taxpayer) or your family member is infected with coronavirus.
  • You have been forced to suspend or halt your business operations due to the pandemic etc.

Taxes Subject to Moratorium

  • Most of the taxes whose deadlines are between February 1st, 2020 and February 1st, January 31st, 2021 (Updated 6/28)
  • Unpaid taxes that are already overdue

How to Apply 

There are two types of taxes: National Tax(国税: koku-zei) and Local Tax (地方税: chihou-zei). Where to go differs depending on the type of taxes you apply a moratorium for. 

  • National Tax

Regarding moratorium on national taxes, such as corporate(business) tax, withholding income tax, self-assessed income tax, consumption tax and so on, please contact “Tax Payment Call Center.” 

After making a call to check and make sure you are eligible, you need to hand in the application form to a department of tax collection in a tax office (税務署: zeimu-sho) near you. You can download the application form from the website and submit it by post; you can also submit it online via  the online service “e-Tax”.

For more details: Tax Payment Call Center: Japanese / English

As of now, information about Tax Payment Call Center is supported in Japanese and English.

In case you want to get information on tax payment in other languages, please refer to any of the help desks and services listed on our article “Tips for seeking help in languages other than Japanese”.

  • Local Tax

Regarding moratorium on local taxes such as residential tax, property tax, car tax and so on, please contact a help desk of your local municipality. You can visit the municipality’s website to get more informed about local taxes and moratorium on them. In case you cannot find information in your language or understand the content, please refer to any of the help desks and services listed in our article “Tips for seeking help in languages other than Japanese”.

Moratorium on Utility Bills

Several companies and organizations provide financial assistance for those who have difficulties paying a utility bill such as electricity, gas or water bill. Below is a list of moratoriums on major infrastructure fees in the Greater Tokyo area.

*There are also other financial support services available.

Electricity Bill

  • Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO)

(Updated 6/28) 4 3-month moratorium is available for electricity and gas bills for March (with the payment deadline of March 19th or later) and April 2020. Payment deadline of a bill for May is deferred for 3 2 months, a bill for June for 2 months a month and a bill for July for a month.

You are eligible if you have difficulty paying utility bills due to COVID-19. You can apply by phone, but TEPCO call center does not operate multilingual services.

Helpline : 

  • Users of billing plans before deregulation : 0120-993-052
  • Users of electricity/gas billing plans after deregulation : 0120-995-113

Times of operation : 9:00 to 17:00 (Monday to Saturday except holidays)

Gas Bill

  • Tokyo Gas

(Updated 6/28) 4 3-month moratorium is available for electricity and gas bills for February (with the payment deadline of March 25th or later), March and April 2020. Payment deadline of a bill for May is deferred for 3 2 months, a bill for June for 2 months a month and a bill for July for a month.

You are eligible if you receive “emergency small amount fund (緊急小口資金: kinkyu koguchi shikin)” or “general supporting fund (総合支援資金: sougo shien shikin)”, or you are in a financially difficult situation since you were furloughed/laid off. 

You can apply by submitting the form via Tokyo Gas’s website or by phone. However, no multilingual support is operated. 

Application form : 

お問い合わせ内容入力 | 東京ガス_災害時受付フォーム
東京ガス_災害時受付フォーム

Call desk : Tokyo Gas Customer Center (for general information) 0570-002211

Times of operation : Monday to Saturday, 9:00 to 19:00 / Sundays and Holidays, 9:00 to 17:00

Water Bill

Tokyo 

You may grant a moratorium with the period of up to 4 months from the date of application. 

Who is eligible ?

Those who have difficulty paying water bills and sewer charges due to the financial fallout caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

 How to apply

You can apply by phone or FAX. Though the municipality’s website and helpline do not offer multilingual support, there is English version of the web page. 

Check out more details such as phone number here.

Kanagawa 

How to apply

By submitting your payment plan to a branch office of waterworks bureau (水道営業所), you can apply for a moratorium with the period of up to 4 months.

You can get the location and contact information of a branch office near you on “notice of your water and sewage consumption” (meter reading slip) or the 

website of prefectural waterworks bureau.

The website is available only in Japanese, but you can browse it through Google translate.

Saitama and Chiba 

Each municipality offers financial assistance and moratorium on water bills. 

Respective municipality’s website may have detailed information.In case you cannot 

find information in your language or understand the content, please refer to any of 

the help desks and services listed in our article “Tips for seeking help in languages 

other than Japanese”.

Please read these articles for further information

If you are in a financially tough situation with decreased income, you can take a look at these articles (in multiple languages) on other financial supports.

Supports available when money is tight because of COVID-19

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