If a foreigner wants to become a Japanese citizen, they must apply for a naturalization permit. Many people wonder whether they should make this application themselves or hire an administrative scrivener.
In this article, you will learn how naturalization works and the advantages of hiring an administrative officer to apply for a naturalization permit.
What is naturalization, anyway?
Naturalization is when a foreign citizen acquires Japanese citizenship. For example, people from the United States, the United Kingdom, and China can be naturalized to become Japanese citizens, that is, to obtain Japanese citizenship.
To become a naturalized citizen, you must apply for a “naturalization permit" from the Legal Affairs Bureau.
Once the permit is issued, you will lose your original citizenship and receive the same rights as a Japanese-born citizen.
The issuance of a permanent residence permit also allows you to live permanently in Japan. However, this does not mean that you can become a Japanese citizen while remaining a citizen of your home country.
General requirements for naturalization
The requirements for naturalization are set forth in the Nationality Law.
- You have lived in Japan for more than 5 years.
- You are 18 years old or older and have reached the age of majority according to the law of your home country.
- Good behavior
- You are able to support yourself from your own assets or those of your spouse or other relatives.
- You do not have citizenship or should lose it by acquiring Japanese citizenship.
- You have never attempted or advocated to violently destroy the Japanese Constitution or the government established under it, or founded/joined any political party or other organization that attempts or advocates to do so.
Advantages and disadvantages of applying for a naturalization permit by yourself
The main advantage of applying for a naturalization permit yourself is that you can reduce the cost, since there are no special costs for the application.
However, there are fees for various certificates issued by public institutions. For example, the birth certificate, residence card, salary certificate, balance certificate, driver’s license certificate, and so on.
The disadvantage is that it takes a lot of time and effort. It takes several months to prepare and gather the necessary documents, and even when you finally submit an application, the Legal Affairs Bureou may ask you to make corrections several times.
Advantages of hiring an administrative scrivener
If you hire an administrative scrivener to apply for a naturalization permit, you can have the necessary documents prepared and picked up, which greatly reduces the amount of time and work you have to do.
In addition, the Legal Affairs Bureau does not process matters on Saturdays, Sundays, holidays, etc. So if you are busy on weekdays, it may be better to hire an administrative scrivener.
In recent years, there have been some cases where applications have been rejected due to errors in the applications or incomplete or insufficient documentation.
If you hire a professional to prepare your application, they will know the most common mistakes and what to look for when preparing the documents.
Hiring an administrative scrivener to prepare your naturalization application will cost you money, but you can reduce your mental stress and workload.
In addition, your application is more likely to be approved than if you submit it yourself.