Refunds Q&A

We have prepared a list of Q&A regarding refunds. A wide variety of questions from overview of refund claims to details of how to apply and receive refunds are answered.

I live overseas, but I have not un-registered by address in Japan and I have left it as is.
Is it possible to claim refunds?
Even if your residency is still registered, as long as there is reality that primary residence is overseas, it is possible to receive acknowledgment as a「non-resident」. Please rest assured and make an inquiry.
How long will it take from signing the contract to receiving the refunds?
After all documents pertaining to overseas residency and refunds, the refunds may be completed within 2~3 months.
What are the required documents for refund claims?
Please prepare the documents below when utilizing our services.

  • All documents related to sale of real estate(sale purchase agreement, invoice/receipt of brokerage fees, registration fees, etc.)
  • All documents related to purchase of real estate(sale purchase agreement, invoice/receipt of brokerage fees, registration fees, etc.)
  • Copy of withholding tax payment slip ※Please acquire from buyer.
  • Bank account information of account receiving refunds(Copy of cover and 1st page of passbook)
  • Service Agreement ※Please fill in address, name, etc. and sign.
  • Written notice of tax agent ※Please fill in address, name, etc. and sign.
    ※For those who filed for tax returns, please also prepare a copy of the tax return form and documents stating monthly balance of payments until sale.
Is it better to ask an international tax accountant or an ordinary tax accountant to claim my refunds?
Consultations regarding refund claims of non-residents may be made to a tax accountant familiar with international tax regulations or an ordinary tax accountant. However, the result may drastically change based on whether or not the tax accountant is closely familiar with the acknowledgement of non-residents, utilization of tax treaties, and international tax regulations. Therefore, we recommend that possible clients deeply understand the merits and differences between consulting an international tax accountant and ordinary tax accountant.

Detailed explanation of differences between an「international tax accountant」and an「ordinary tax accountant」

Firstly, we will explain about the difference between an「international tax accountant」and an「ordinary tax accountant」.
Tax accountants have national certification regarding taxation and have the ability to exclusively perform all duties related to tax such as tax consultations, creating tax documents, act as a tax agent, etc. In other words, tax accountants are able to handle all matters regarding taxation such as income tax, corporate tax, inheritance tax, etc. However, as globalization expands, there becomes increased requests to handle international taxation matters. Although we say here “international taxation”, the work is focused on the tax regulations of Japan, but while working closely with local tax specialists, a wide range of knowledge and experience regarding tax treaties, acknowledgement of non-residents, handling of withholding tax, etc. is needed as special rules are incurred. Similar to how doctors have their specialization in different fields such as internal medicine, surgical department, obstetrics and gynecology, etc., and attorneys have specialization in different types of cases such as civil, criminal, road accidents, etc., tax accountants also have specializations. 「Inheritance-Specialized Tax Accountants」have increased in recent days, but it is clear that specialization in tax accountants will increase in the years to come. When appointing an「ordinary tax accountant」who is not familiar with international tax regulations to take care of taxation of non-residents or claim refunds, there is even risk that taxation may increase.
We suggest that you research the international tax experience of your tax accountant before entrusting your tax matters.