The responsibility for implementing Canada's income security programs, which includes the Canada Pension Plan and Old Age Security, rests with Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC).
The Agreement on Social Security between Canada and Japan was signed on February 15, 2006 and came into force on March 1, 2008.
The Agreement may help you qualify for Canadian and Japanese old age, disability or survivor benefits.
Social security legislation and agreements are complex. This sheet contains only general information and may not describe all the provisions that apply to your situation.
The Canadian pension programs included in the Agreement are the Canada Pension Plan and the Old Age Security program.
Under the Canada Pension Plan, you can receive a benefit when you retire or if you become disabled. The Plan may also pay benefits to your survivors after you die.
To qualify for a benefit, you normally must have contributed to the Plan, which came into force on January 1, 1966, for a minimum period.
If you do not qualify for a Canada Pension Plan benefit, Canada will consider periods of insurance to the pension program of Japan as periods of contribution to the Canada Pension Plan.
The Old Age Security program covers most persons who live or have lived in Canada. The Old Age Security pension is payable at the age of 65 to persons who meet certain residence conditions. To qualify for this pension in Canada, you normally must have lived in this country for at least 10 years after the age of 18. You normally need 20 years of residence in Canada after the same age to receive an Old Age Security pension outside Canada.
What happens if you do not qualify for a Canadian Old Age Security pension because you have not lived in Canada for the minimum number of years? Under the Agreement, if you have resided in Canada after age 18 and from January 1, 1952, Canada will consider periods of insurance to the pension program of Japan after the age of 18 and from January 1, 1952 as periods of residence in Canada.
The pension program of Japan consists of the National Pension system and the Pension Systems for Employees. The National Pension system covers all persons residing in Japan. The Pension Systems for Employees cover most employed persons in Japan.
To qualify for a benefit under the pension program of Japan, you normally must have contributed to the program for a minimum number of years. For example, to qualify for a Japanese old age pension at the age of 65, you normally must have contributed to the pension program for at least 25 years.
If you have not contributed to the program for the minimum period, you may not qualify for a Japanese benefit. However, to determine eligibility for a Japanese benefit under the Agreement, Japan will consider periods of contribution to the Canada Pension Plan as periods of insurance to the pension program of Japan.
You may qualify for a benefit from Canada or Japan, or both. Under the Agreement, each country will pay a benefit based solely on your periods of contribution, insurance or residence under its pension program.
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0L4
If you live in Canada or the United States, you can also contact Service Canada, toll-free in English or in French at:
If you live outside of Canada or the United States, you can contact service Canada in English or in French at:
Tel: 1-613-957-1954 (collect calls accepted)
Hours of Operation: Agents are ready to answer your questions Monday to Friday 8:30 am to 4:30 pm North American Eastern Standard Time.
Please have your Canadian social insurance number ready.