Tips for Successfully Navigating Tax Audits in Japan

【Koshida Accounting Firm Column Date:

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 unclear about Japanese tax audits, you might find this blog helpful.




It is rare to have a tax return filed without any errors. Therefore, it’s important to avoid revealing unintentional mistakes during tax audits.


Aim to Shorten the Duration of Tax Audits

Reducing the time spent by tax officers on audits decreases the likelihood of finding errors. Let the tax officers know that you are busy and would like them to finish as early as possible. While it’s unlikely that they will immediately agree and leave earlier, it is crucial to assert pressure on the tax officers.


Prepare Documents in a Modestly Disorganized Manner

Tax officers check various types of documents such as ledgers, invoices, and receipts. If documents are too neatly organized, the efficiency of the audit increases, raising the likelihood of finding errors. Thus, it’s better to have your documents modestly disorganized.


Minimize Direct Interaction between the President and Tax Officers

If a president, with no knowledge of taxes, spends too much time conversing with tax officers, their flaws may be exposed. As usual, it is advisable to schedule many engagements and be out of the office, excluding the approximately one hour required for tax officer consultations.



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