I have been solving the grammar tasks for JLPT N3. I have made a mistake in the following question.

お金をいただいてからでないと、商品はお渡し(    )。


I know the right answer is できません, but I still don't understand why. Can you explain to me please why other answers are wrong? It just seems to me that there is not enough context to solve this task.

I can guess that the first part translates like: If after I get money, it doesn't come off, the delivery of the item is... But I can't guess the right answer only from this. Can you help me please to understand it?


your confusion stems from the fact that you are mis-translating でない as "can't come off". However this is actually a portion of a standard sentence fragment:


which is a phrase meaning "something can't happen until something else happens first" (here is a link that might help: https://japanesetest4you.com/flashcard/learn-jlpt-n2-grammar-%E3%81%A6%E3%81%8B%E3%82%89%E3%81%A7%E3%81%AA%E3%81%84%E3%81%A8-tekara-denai-to/

so this sentence, with できません correctly attached, translates to

Until/Unless I/we receive the money I/we cannot deliver the goods.

| improve this answer | |
  • Thank you very much for the explanation. I completely understand now. It just didn't occur to me it was some standard phrase since I have never seen it before. Thank you – Alex Nov 23 '18 at 9:18

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.