Flowers in Japan

Certificate of eligibility

A Certificate of Eligibility is issued before a visa application by a regional immigration authority under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Justice as evidence that the applicant fulfills various conditions of the Immigration Control Act, including those certifying that the activity in which the foreigner wishes to engage in Japan is valid and comes under a status of residence (excluding Temporary Visitor Status).

The Certificate of Eligibility has the advantage of reducing the time required to obtain a visa and complete immigration procedures, since a foreigner in possession of such a certificate can probably acquire a visa at an embassy or consulate without any inquiries being made to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and, by showing the certificate to the immigration officer, obtain landing permission more easily.

Please note, however, that even if a foreigner possesses a Certificate of Eligibility, an embassy or consulate will not issue a visa in certain circumstances -for example, if there has been a change in the situation since the issue of the certificate (such as the company that was planning to hire the foreigner deciding not to do so because of business difficulties) or if it becomes evident that the documents submitted to obtain the certificate were false.

There are two processes for acquiring a Certificate of Eligibility, as shown in the accompanying diagram. An application is usually made by a proxy in Japan at the nearest regional immigration authority to the proxy’s place of residence in Japan. The second process is limited to special cases, such as applicants who happen to be residing in Japan and are prepared to leave the country to apply for a visa.
For more details concerning the acquisition of a Certificate of Eligibility and the time required, please inquire at the nearest regional immigration authority.


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