Shouts fill a room at a temporary housing complex where seven officials, kneeling in their dark suits, face 70 or so tenants who were forced to abandon their homes near the Fukushima nuclear plant after some of its reactors went into meltdown after the March 11 quake struck.
"We don't know who we can trust!" one man yelled in the cramped room where the officials were trying to explain the hugely complex procedures to claim compensation.
"Can we actually go back home? And if not, can you guarantee our livelihoods?"
About 80,000 people were forced to leave their homes by the nuclear crisis.
While the owner of the plant, Tokyo Electric Power Co, has made temporary payments to some victims, it was only last month that it finally began accepting applications for compensation.
But the procedure is so complicated that it seems to just make things worse.
After claimants have read a 160-page instruction manual, they then have to fill in a 60-page form and attach receipts for lodging, transportation and medical costs.
"It's too difficult. I'm going to see how it goes. I don't want to rush and mess up," said Toshiyuki Owada, 65, an evacuee from Namie town, about 20 km (12 miles) away from the plant.
One hundred sixty pages just for the instructions to fill out the compensation form. You'd think TEPCO and the Japanese government were making it as difficult as possible in order for the hundreds of thousands of people affected by this mess to get compensation, especially since they could be on the hook for a trillion or so.
We're seeing the method to this madness, and it's saddening to see Japan take a page from the Bush playbook.