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Certificate of Eligibility

Japan With Kids - Forums: Immigration/visas/re-entry permits/naturalization: Certificate of Eligibility
By Ian Copsey on Sunday, March 26, 2006 - 8:01 pm:

I used to live & work in Japan for nearly 7 years, have a Japanese wife and I'm in the final stages of negotiating employment with the Japanese office of a foreign company. We had planned to return to Japan next month but I have just been reviewing the immigration procedure and it seems a lot different to when I was there last!

Before the Japanese firm I worked with (the representatives of the U.S. company who were the real employers) were the lessee of my apartment and so I could move in without having a residency visa but I was paid out of Hong Kong. The big difference this time is that I shall be a local hire and will have to rent an apartment in my own name so will require a residency visa (or my wife can rent but she has no income).

Whether I can complete the visa application will depend on how long a Certificate of Eligibility takes to organize. I suspect that 2 weeks will not be enough! Does anyone have any idea of how long this process will take?

My suggested solution is that we stay in a serviced apartment for as long as is necessary, can work at the company in Japan but will need to be paid offshore or as a consultant until the residency visa is completed. Does anyone have any experience to suggest this wouldn't work?

By Scott Hancock on Sunday, March 26, 2006 - 10:12 pm:

CoE can take up to two months; two weeks would be remarkable.

Staying in the serviced apartment and being paid off-shore should work.

Whatever you do, don't try to explain it when you come into Immigration. Just say you are visiting on business.

Once you get the CoE, you'll have to go to some Japan cousulate in another country to get it changed into the visa in your passport.

By Ian Copsey on Sunday, March 26, 2006 - 10:44 pm:

Thanks Scott
That's what it took last time but for some reason it was applied for from outside of Japan which I understand takes longer. I was hoping that if it was applied for within Japan it would be a bit shorter.

I remember all tips about the immigration explanations and that I have to go out of Japan to get the residency permit. Just have to brush up on my Japanese again... :)

By Scott Hancock on Sunday, March 26, 2006 - 10:49 pm:

If you're going to start your new life over as a gaijin, I guess you'll have to learn again - "Logic is not universal. And in Japan, it isn't consistent, either."


By Ian Copsey on Sunday, March 26, 2006 - 11:59 pm:

Yep, I guess you're right! I love the place to bits and have always wanted to get back but I have wondered how many times I'll be saying "aaahhh, I'd forgotten about THAT!"...

By Tyng Battista on Monday, March 27, 2006 - 10:29 am:


I am wondering if anyone has been in this situations before?

I am having a dependent visa but would like to have it change to working visa, can I just go to my ward office or do I have to go to the Immigrations department?

Thanks for any advice.


By Scott Hancock on Monday, March 27, 2006 - 10:38 am:

Changing the type of visa has nothing to do with the ward office (other than registering such change after it's accomplished).

Please see the many discussions under this main topic (Immigration/Visa/Re-entry) for information on what's involved.

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