Guide to Tax Filing for Non-Japanese Self-Employed Individuals

【Koshida Accounting Firm Column Date:

“The knowledge of all things is possible” ― Leonardo da Vinci




Hi, my name is Taisei Koshida, and I am a certified public accountant and tax accountant.


I aim to assist non-Japanese business owners who struggle with reading or writing in Japanese. If you find the Japanese tax return system challenging, I can help you with your tax filings.


If you are unsure about whether you need to file a tax return or not, this blog can be helpful for you.




Who Needs To File A Tax Return?

If you operate your own business and generate income, you are required to file a tax return. However, if you didn’t make a profit, filing a tax return may not be necessary.

On the other hand, if you incur a loss and want to carry it forward to offset against future profits, you must file your income tax return on time and declare the loss in your tax return.


If you need more information about carrying over losses, please refer to the following.

Filing Tax Returns in Japan: Importance of Blue-Form Submission and Deadline Compliance


What Are The Consequences of Not Filing A Tax Return?

If you fail to file your tax return, the tax authorities may investigate your business, demand tax payments, and impose penalties.



If you’d like more information, the following might be helpful for you.

Drawbacks of Not Filing Taxes



When Are Tax Returns Due?

If you operate your business as an individual (not a company), individual income tax is assessed based on a calendar year, and you must file your return by March 15 of the following year. If you operate a company, you must file within two months after the end of your company’s fiscal year.



How Should I Maintain My Business Records?

If you operate your business as an individual (not a company), using bookkeeping software is not always necessary, and you can manage your records with an Excel spreadsheet or similar tools. However, if you want to take advantage of the benefits of double-entry bookkeeping and reduce your profit by 650,000 yen, using software is necessary.



Our accounting firm has been actively assisting foreign business owners in Japan with accounting and tax matters. Please feel free to contact us through the inquiry form.