Your Rights: Pregnancy, Child birth, Maternity Leave

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働く女性の妊娠・出産・育児に伴って利用できる各種制度について

If you’re a working woman and are either thinking about starting a family or are looking for a little financial help or extra time with your young family, there are a number of employment laws and benefits available to assist you. The Child Care and Family Care Leave Law was revised in 2010 and is applicable to both working mothers and fathers – which ever one is the main care-giver. Below are some of the laws that safe guard a worker’s rights and provide assistance to families in the areas of pregnancy check-ups, birthing costs, maternity leave, working hours, overtime, sick leave, night work, and child care leave.

For further information about any of the following items and information specific to your working status, work conditions, and family situation, visit or call (052-581-0100) the Nagoya International Center’s resident civic advisory service; available in English Tuesdays and Saturdays (10:00 – 17:00).

 


Pregnancy 妊娠

Time off for pregnancy check-ups 妊婦健康診査等に必要な時間の確保
If requested employers must secure the necessary time off so that a female employee may receive the health guidance and medical examinations prescribed in the Maternal and Child Health Act (Act on Securing of Equal Opportunity and Treatment Between Men and Women in Employment, Article 12).

Changes / reduction of working hours 主治医の指導に伴う労働等の軽減
Employers must take necessary measures, such as change of working hours and reduction of work, in order to enable female employees to comply with the medical advice they have received (Securing of Equal Opportunity and Treatment Between Men and Women in Employment Law, Article 13).

  • In order to correctly convey this information between the medical facility and the employer the Ministry of Health, Labour, and Welfare have issued a standard report format known as the “Mother Health Contact Card” 母健連絡カード. You can download and print this out from here http://bit.ly/motherhealth.

Days Off – before and after child birth 産前産後の休業
If a female employee requests, an employer cannot ask a female employee to work within 6 weeks (14 weeks in the case of multiple fetuses) of her expected delivery date.

Employers cannot ask a female employee to work within 8 weeks after childbirth. However with medical approval a female employee can request to work after 6 weeks have passed since childbirth (Labour Standards Law, Article 65).


Birth 出産

Lump-sum Payment of Childbirth and Childcare 出産育児一時金
If a person is enrolled in National Health Insurance or Employees’ Health Insurance they may receive a lump-sum birth reimbursement if they request it (National Health Insurance Law, Article 58). The amount is currently set at 350,000 Yen; per child in the case of twins.

 

Maternity Allowance 出産手当金
If a person who enrolled in Employees’ Health Insurance (not available with National Health Insurance) is absent from work in order to give birth to a baby and will lose income from their employers, they can receive a Maternity Allowance (Health Insurance Law, Article 102).

  • Benefit Amount
    Approximately two-thirds of the daily standard wage is paid. This allowance is payable from 42 days preceding the delivery date until 56 days after the delivery. In case of twins or more, it is payable from 98 days preceding the delivery date. If the baby is born later than the expected delivery date, it is payable from 42 days preceding the expected delivery date.

Child Raising 育児

Returning to Work After Child Birth 産後休業後の復職
A woman raising an infant under the age of one year may request time off of at least 30 minutes twice a day to care for the infant (Labour Standards Law, Article 67).

Female employees that have given birth with the last 12 months may request time off to receive the health guidance and medical examinations prescribed in the Maternal and Child Health Act (Securing of Equal Opportunity and Treatment Between Men and Women in Employment Law, Article 12 / 13).

 

Time off for Child Raising 育児休業
Upon application to their employer an employee may take child care leave during the period until their child reaches one year of age. However if both parents want to take child care leave they can do so for a period of one year during the period until the child reaches one year and two months of age. Under specific circumstances this can be extended until the child reaches one year and six months of age (Child Care and Family Care Leave Law, Article 5).

 

Basic Childcare Leave Benefits 育児休業給付金
If an employee who is covered by employment insurance (koyō hoken 雇用保険) takes childcare leave to look after a child who is younger than one-year-old, the employee is entitled to 50% of their regular salary for the leave period (Employment Insurance Law Article 61-4).


Benefits for Working Parents 幼児を育てながら働く

Shorter Working Hours 短時間勤務制度
If requested to do so by the employee, employers are obliged to make measures to shorten the working hours of an employee who has a child of less than 3 years of age and has not taken child care leave (Child Care and Family Care Leave Law, Article 16).

Limitation on overtime work 時間外労働の制限
If requested by the employee, employers must not have the worker work overtime in excess of 24 hours per month and 150 hours per year if that employee is taking care of a pre-school-age child (Child Care and Family Care Leave Law, Article 17).

Limitation on late-night work 深夜業の制限
If requested by the employee, employers must not have the worker work late at night if that employee is taking care of a pre-school-age child (Child Care and Family Care Leave Law, Article 19).

Leave to care for a sick / injured child 子の看護休暇
Upon application to their employer, an employee who is taking care of a pre-school-age child may obtain leave to look after the child in the event of injury or sickness to the child; with limits of up to five days per year if they have one pre-school-age child, or up to ten days per year if they have two or more such children (Child Care and Family Care Leave Law, Article 16).

 

Exemption from overtime work 所定外労働の免除
If requested to do so by the employee, employers must exempt the employee from working in excess of the prescribed working hours (Child Care and Family Care Leave Law, Article 17).


Further Reading in English

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