Rules of Employment

Work regulations

“Work regulations” are the rules stipulated by the company. If the company has more than 10 employees, the company is required to have work regulations. All of the company’s employees should be able to see the regulations.

Payment of wages

  • Wages must be paid directly and with money (a bank transfer can be used)
  • Your company deducts taxes and social insurance premiums from your wages and pays them to the country on your behalf.
  • Wages must be paid at least once a month on a fixed date.


Receive a payslip from your company on the payday.
A payslip is a document given by your company that details the wage amount and other allowances, as well as deducted taxes and insurance premiums. You will receive a payslip every month.

Leave allowance

If you are absent from work for reasons attributable to your company, your company must pay you a leave allowance equal to at least 60% of your average wage.

Working hours and work breaks/rest periods

Working hours

Up to 8 hours per day (working hours might vary depending on work styles or work shifts)
Up to 40 hours per week

Work breaks

At least 45 minutes if your working hours per day exceed 6 hours
At least 60 minutes if your working hours per day exceed 8 hours

Rest periods

At least 1 rest day per week, or at least 4 rest days in 4 weeks

Annual paid leave (Annual leave)

Annual paid leave is a holiday that a worker can take during which wages are paid even though he/she is absent from work. Workers can take annual paid leave if they have been working continuously for 6 months and have reported for work on at least 80% of the total working days. Dispatched workers and part-time workers abide by the same rules.

Overtime work and work on holidays

Working hours stipulated by law

  • Up to 8 hours per day, or up to 40 hours per week
  • At least 1 rest day per week, or at least 4 rest days in 4 weeks

Working longer than the legal working hours is called “overtime.”
Rules for overtime:Up to 45 hours a month, 360 hours a year
When the company is very busy, employees may be permitted to work overtime beyond the hours specified in this rule. Please contact the Labour Bureau for more details.

When you work overtime, or work on holidays or during night, your salary will be a little higher.
①If you work more than 8 hours a day or 40 hours a week, your salary will be at least 1.25 times higher
②At large companies (all companies from April 1, 2023), if you work overtime more than 60 hours a month, your salary will be at least 1.5 times higher
③If you work on holidays, your salary will be at least 1.35 times higher
④If you work from 10:00 pm to 5:00 am, your salary will be at least 1.25 times higher
In the case of overtime work for those supposed to work during night(items ①&④), your salary will be at least 1.5 times higher

Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare Upper Limit for Overtime Work (Japanese)

Special leaves

Maternity leave

A female employee can rest for 6 weeks before childbirth at her own request (or 14 weeks in the case of multiple fetuses). After childbirth, a female employee must rest for 8 weeks after childbirth.
She can receive a “childbirth allowance” from her health insurance while on maternity leave.

Childcare leave

Male and female employees can take childcare leave to raise their children.
They can take a leave of absence from work until their children becomes one year old. They can receive “childcare leave benefits” from their employment insurance while on childcare leave.

Family care leave

What is “Caregiving”?
Caregiving is taking care of persons who have difficulty living their daily lives due to advanced age or special illness.
If you have a family member who requires caregiving, you can take a total of 93 days of family care leave. Family care leave can be taken in 3 divided times. If you take family care leave, you can receive a “family care leave allowance” from your employment insurance (up to 67% of your regular salary).

Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare: Family Care Leave System (Japanese)

Resignation, end of contract

Voluntary resignation

Those who do not have a fixed-term labor contract

Notify your company of your resignation by the date set by the “employment resignations” (or at least 2 weeks before your resignation).

Those who have a fixed-term labor contract

You cannot resign during the middle of the term of contract. If you have special reasons, consult with your company.

Companies cannot force you to resign without reasons


When your company orders you to “quit your job,” this is referred to as “dismissal.”
If the dismissal lacks clear reasons, your company cannot dismiss you.
When your company dismisses you, they are required to provide you at least 30 days advance notice. If not, they must pay you the average amount of wages for the number of days falling short of the 30 days advance notice.

Termination of fixed-term employment

When a contract is not renewed after a fixed-term employment contract expires, this is referred to as “termination of fixed-term employment.”
Regarding workers “whose contract has been renewed at least three times ” and “who have been working for at least one year”, if a company will not renew a contract after the term has expired, the company must provide 30 days advance notice of the “termination of fixed-term employment.”
You have to make a new contract with the company if you wish to work there after the contract expires. Without rational reasons, a company cannot terminate a fixed-term employment for workers whose contract has been renewed many times.

When the company encourages you to voluntarily resign

Even if your company asks you to “resign voluntarily” instead of dismiss you, you can decide whether or not to resign. If you do not wish to quit your job, make a clear statement to your company that “you are not going to resign.”

Bankruptcy of the company

If your company goes bankrupt due to financial difficulties and is unable to pay your wages, please first consult with the “Foreigner Consultation Corner” of the Labour Bureau.
The government may pay a part of the unpaid wages on behalf of the company.