National

To help simplify complex tasks, Diet passes legislation allowing online administrative procedures

JIJI

The Diet on Friday enacted legislation that enables online administrative procedures in order to enhance residents’ convenience by simplifying complex procedures related to events such as changes of address, death and property inheritance.

The bill was approved at a plenary meeting of the House of Councilors, the upper chamber of the Diet, by a majority vote with support from ruling and opposition party lawmakers. It cleared the House of Representatives, the lower chamber, earlier this month.

The government is set to draw up a relevant program by yearend, and online administrative procedures will become available in stages as soon as a necessary system is ready.

At a news conference the same day, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said, “We hope to realize more efficient and affluent communities by making the most of digital technologies and further pushing forward with the digitalization of the whole society.”

On moving, a portal website allowing people to conduct procedures related to the changes of address for electricity and gas supplies and bank accounts all together is slated to come into use by the end of March.

As for deaths and inheritance issues, online procedures will become available for stopping the receipt of pensions, getting life insurance payouts and making inheritance tax payments.

Meanwhile, online procedures will not be allowed for welfare benefit applications and for marriage and divorce registrations because they require face-to-face procedures at administrative offices.

The legislation will enable Japanese nationals living abroad to use their My Number tax and social security identification cards and therefore to complete procedures to receive pensions and pay taxes on the Internet.