Last week I received a green envelope containing a letter about my Japanese National Health Insurance (国民健康保険, kokumin kenkou hoken) application. It had a small booklet that looked like a coupon booklet, with perforated sections.
I took it to my local post office to pay it and she explained that you could either pay it monthly, in one Y2,000, and then five Y1,000 installments, or pay the whole Y7,000 at once. I thought it would be better to get it all out of the way so I paid the full amount. She tore out all of the sections and stamped them, and then gave the remainder of the booklet back to me.
So hopefully that's all sorted and I'm insured by the Japanese government!
A couple of days after I paid for it another letter arrived by Registered Mail so I had to sign for it at my door (wrapped in a blanket!) Inside there was a card I had to peel off and put inside a plastic wallet, and I assume I have to carry that around with me. There was also another card made of paper that you can cut off a leaflet, and I'm not completely what it's for, but I've cut it out and will keep it with the other one.
Rob also got this letter, despite not having received the first one, so he hasn't paid for it yet. I assume that he wouldn't be able to receive the discount on medical care though, once they check the details. He's going to go back to the Health Insurance department of the City Hall and ask if there's been a problem.