Application for extension of stay – What can cause visa denial?

Of the many foreigners currently residing in Japan on a visa, some are likely approaching the expiration date of their visa. If a foreigner continues to stay in Japan after his or her residency status (visa) expires, he or she is working illegally. Therefore, it is necessary to renew the residence permit in time. This topic is about how to extend your visa and the procedure.

About visa extension

With the exception of permanent residence, all residence statuses have a fixed duration of stay. Therefore, if a foreigner continues to stay in Japan after his or her residence status expires, he or she is working illegally.

In order for a foreigner to continue working in Japan under his or her residency status, he or she must apply for an extension before the current residency period expires.

In other words, you must apply for the extension before the period indicated on your residence card expires.

Extending only the period of stay

If you only want to extend the period of residence, you need to submit the “Application for Extension of the Period of Stay".

You can download the application form from the Ministry of Justice website and submit it to the regional immigration office that has jurisdiction over your place of residence.

Usually you can submit the application from three months before the end of your current period of stay. Usually the visa holder himself submits the application, but a representative or an authorized agent can also do so.

However, if there are special circumstances, such as a hospital stay or a long business trip, applications can be submitted earlier.

When an application is made to extend a residence permit, the Minister of Justice may grant the permit only if there are reasonable grounds for believing that the extension is appropriate.

“If the extension of the residence permit is approved, a new “residence card" is issued.
If the job description changes

In cases where the job description changes, a request for approval of the change in residency status is made instead of updating the residency status.

This is because the Immigration Department must confirm the job description and salary for the new job.

Possible reasons for rejection of applications

  • Bad behavior

If there is a violation of criminal law during the stay, the visa extension may be denied for bad behavior.

  • Scope of activity under the work visa

It is important that your current activity is within the scope of your residency status. If you exceed the scope of your residency status or if you do not engage in the activities that are within the scope of your residency status, the permit will most likely not be granted.

Reapplication after visa denial

You may reapply if your application to extend your stay is denied. However, the review will be stricter than for your first application.


If a foreigner wishes to continue their activities under their residency status in Japan, they must apply for an extension before their residency period expires. However, there are cases where approval is denied, such as bad behavior or exceeding the scope of activities of the current work visa.
If your application is denied, you can reapply, but the review will be stricter than the first review.