Guides for Disability Living in Japan

  • Guides for Disability Living in Japan

    Posted by Mr.Marsh on October 15, 2022 at 3:34 pm

    Anyone know of resources or help for English speaking foreigners with disabilities living in Japan?

    This appears to primarily be a travel oriented discussion site, so I don’t want to be off topic.

    The disability status system appears “all or nothing”. As in, in order to be approved for, say, discounted transportation fees, you also must qualify & be approved for a Japanese Disability Pension. Is this accurate?

    Mr.Marsh replied 1 year, 7 months ago 2 Members · 4 Replies
  • 4 Replies
  • Josh Grisdale

    October 15, 2022 at 4:17 pm

    While this site is focused on travel, these questions do seem to come up frequently enough that maybe there should be a group for it!

    Implementation of services is done by the city/town/ward, so the best thing is to look at the website of the local government as they tend to have English versions of their sites, or offer machine translation.

    The basis of all services, though, is the 障害者手帳 (shogaisha tech, or disability ID). You get it through your local government, but it is from the prefecture and recognized in other prefectures. You do need this for getting discounts etc, or applying for disability pension. The disability pension does require the ID, but having the ID does not guarantee getting a pension, etc since that is a function of current and past income. Basically the ID just let’s people, organizations, other governments know that you have been certified as having a disability.

    As for guides… I’m not sure I know of any other than the suggested local government sites. If you live in a bigger city, the city hall may have interpreters on hand to help you when applying…

  • Mr.Marsh

    October 15, 2022 at 4:41 pm

    Thank you for the response. I looked into obtaining a 障害者手帳 (shogaisha tech, or disability ID) from the local city office. Applying appears to be the same as applying for a Disability Pension(?!) which is something I don’t want to do, as I fear it could interfere with further visa approval. I can’t find any official information. The local government translation service pointed me the English version of the website but all the PDFs are in Japanese. If you have time to point me in the right direction or recommend services (tax filers, accessible apartments) please message me. Any information would be appreciated,

    • Josh Grisdale

      October 24, 2022 at 2:43 pm

      Hmm there may have been some misunderstanding along the way because those two are not connected. Maybe it wasn’t the pension, but 手当? That would come from the disability department…

      You may want to get in touch with a disability organization like DPI Japan –

    • Mr.Marsh

      October 27, 2022 at 10:00 am

      It’s very possible there’s a translation issue or misunderstanding. Everything I’ve tried indicates it’s an “all or nothing system” Thank you for the suggestions.

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