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subechin (Offline)
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Moving back to Japan with family. Difficulties ? - 07-10-2011, 11:18 AM

Hello everyone,
I am new here and at first I like to appologize if my english isn´t correct as I am from Germany actually.
My wife is japanese and we have two sons of which the first one was born in japan since we lived there till the end of 2009. We moved to germany as I expected Germany to be better for our childreens education and also there is great Social Security in germany, so for me as a german i thought its a real safe place.
Now after living in germany for almost 1 1/2 years we are staring to having our doubts about that. German taxes are so high that it eats up almost half my salary and also as you might all know the situation in europe isn´t easy as the situation the euro is in but thats not really the point here.
We almost came to the conclusion that it was a mistake to ever leave japan as we had a great time there and my old employee would love to take me back.
The thing that really gets me to think since we have two childreen is Social Security. What happens if i loose my job? What happens if i get sick and can´t work anymore. Hospital bills will gorw and grow probably? How about insurances in japan?
I would like to have some advise or tips from mixed couples living in japan beeing in the same situation as me.
I know some migt say that my wife should know but she lived in her parents house till we married and then soon we moved to germany so she doesn´t really know and i like to sort this out by myself and like to disguss it with other people in the same situation.
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MMM (Offline)
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07-10-2011, 05:19 PM

I would be more concerned about children's education than losing your job and getting sick. How are the schools where you would live, and are you satisfied by the education they would get?
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07-11-2011, 03:00 AM

There are various forms of social programs in Japan, including unemployment insurance, healthcare, and a national pension plan. As a regular employee in Japan, enrollment in these programs is compulsory. Additional insurance is available from private providers, just as it is in other countries.

Keep in mind that Japan is facing a rather difficult financial situation as well. Those who are paying into tha national pension system right now aren't likely to get much when they retire, so saving as much as you afford to would be wise.

Personally, I think there are opportunities in Japan for those who want to look for them (the same is true for other countries as well). Prepare carefully, work hard, and work smart.
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subechin (Offline)
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07-11-2011, 03:28 AM

@MMM

I lived near Osaka City actually, Schools there are Nice and the Area is quit wealthy. I actualyl can´t say that i totally agree with the japanese education system but i also don´t agree with the german one. So if i had to choose i rather let my childreen go to school in japan.

@ Sangetsu

Well i think we can never know what will be the situation when i retire from work which will be in about 35 years. Now germany seems to be safer for my pension but honestly looking at the situation the euro is in now and all the dept the germans are making to support other european union countries it could be the same for germany. But after all we never know abouzt the future so it would be always wise to save up for private pension.

Pretty much i am concerned how the situation is now. As i heard the japanese gouverment cut the child allowance back for example which doesn´t look like a stable and smart move to me.
Also it of course isn´t in my interest to live on welfare in any country and so far i worked my whole life and always had a job. But having two childreen you begin to think, life changed and responsibility growed.
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07-11-2011, 04:50 AM

You`ve gotten a couple answers already, but I`ll give mine from the view of a "mixed couple" with a child in school in Japan.

Quote:
German taxes are so high that it eats up almost half my salary and also as you might all know the situation in europe isn´t easy as the situation the euro is in but thats not really the point here.
I can`t make any comparisons with the Euro situation, but Japanese taxes also take a very large portion of your income.

Quote:
The thing that really gets me to think since we have two childreen is Social Security. What happens if i loose my job? What happens if i get sick and can´t work anymore. Hospital bills will gorw and grow probably? How about insurances in japan?
And... This is the reason taxes are high. Social Security is one part, but there are a number of social services. Enrollment in the national insurance plan is compulsory for all residents in the country (not just employees). Hospital costs are mostly covered by insurance, and the initial costs are very low. If you are unable to work due to illness there are various services available to help with the cost of living and medical issues... There are also a number of services to help with supporting a family when unable to work.
Insurance would be one of the last worries, quite honestly. Japan has an extensive system in place.

Quote:
Originally Posted by subechin View Post
I actualyl can´t say that i totally agree with the japanese education system but i also don´t agree with the german one. So if i had to choose i rather let my childreen go to school in japan.
The Japanese education system you would have encountered while in Japan previously (if you were at all familiar with the elementary~junior high level - most people only know about high school) has changed significantly in the past few years. They pretty much revoked the Yutori policies, leading to a longer more structured school day. Whether this is a positive thing is going to be down to your personal opinion.

Quote:
Pretty much i am concerned how the situation is now. As i heard the japanese gouverment cut the child allowance back for example which doesn´t look like a stable and smart move to me.
The story is a bit different - it went more like this; raise the allowance a LOT, giving almost random "bonuses" to families with children and also to children who are not even in the country, etc... Then, they lowered it to a mid-point.

So, it has actually been raised when compared to the past. It started at 5000/month for 1 child, was raised to 20000/month plus a couple of "one time" gifts, and is now 13000/month. You can only say it has been "lowered" if you look at the 2 or 3 months that it was 20000 or more.


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