Japanese tax treaty forms on the web

June 6, 2010  |  Tax Treaties
Torii in Miyajma shrine, one of the best known scenic spots in Japan.

Torii in Miyajma shrine, one of the best known scenic spots in Japan.

The Japanese tax authority website allows the download of PDFs of the forms (”Treaty Forms’) that must be completed to claim reduction or exemption from Japanese taxes under Japan’s tax treaties (to claim ‘Treaty Benefits’).  Typical Treaty Benefits are reductions in the rate of Japanese withholding taxes on income or dividends.

The Treaty Forms include detailed notes in English on their completion on the reverse which should be read closely.  Forms can be filed by the entity claiming the treaty benefits concerned but it is often helpful (or for practical purposes almost unavoidable) to appoint a local tax representative to file the form concerned.

Sometimes the Treaty Forms themselves require a Japanese tax return to be filed along with the form (for example, when claiming an exemption from tax on disposals of certain Japanese shares – completion is a practical impossibility for the non-Japanese speaker even for simple cases). This article explains the scope of Japanese taxation of foreign companies and when withholding tax or tax filing is required while this article has some more details around the legal definition of Japan source income in the Japanese tax code.

Please refer to the links below for the forms.

WARNING Regrettably the Japanese tax authorities’ web site does not associate a unique URL with a unique tax treaty or other tax form. Instead the URL to the PDF file of the treaty form is named after the row in which the form appears on this table starting at around row 253. This will may cause the links below to link to the wrong form when the Japanese tax authority site is updated by adding or deleting forms in the table, so please check the form itself is correct in case this site is not up to date with tax authority changes. If the link is not up to date you should still be able to find the form on the same page a row or two above or below or by searching the Japanese tax authority web site.

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