How to apply for a certificate of eligibility
Foreign nationals who wish to enter Japan, except those admitted for short-term stay, may apply for a certificate of eligibility.
You can apply at the regional immigration office that has jurisdiction over the applicant’s intended place of residence or the location of the host institution.
Reception hours are 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. on weekdays.
The regional immigration offices or the foreign residents’ information center serves as a point of contact for advice on applications.
There are no specific restrictions on when to apply, but it is desirable to apply early to ensure that the application form can be issued before entering Japan.
The standard processing time from application to receipt of the certificate is 1 to 3 months. There is no fee for applying for a C\certificate of eligibility.
Who may submit an application for a certificate of eligibility
- The following persons may file an application for a certificate of eligibility for residence status
- Applicant (foreign national who wishes to enter Japan)
- A representative designated in the regulation of the Ministry of Justice, such as an employee of an organization that admits foreign nationals
- An employee of a public interest corporation whose purpose is to facilitate the smooth admission of foreigners deemed suitable by the director of the regional immigration office
- Attorneys or administrative scriveners who have notified the director of the regional immigration service
- A legal representative of the applicant
An online application is also available
You can also apply online for a certificate of eligibility.
Holders of residence status other than diplomats and short-term residents may apply. Spouses of Japanese nationals, spouses of permanent residents, etc., and long-term residents who could not apply in the past can now apply.
The advantages of applying online are that you do not have to go to the counter, you can apply 24 hours a day, and you can use the system for free.
The person making an application (the applicant themselves, their legal representative, spouse, child, father, or mother) must prepare their My Number card, residence card, etc., and obtain permission in advance to use the online system.
You will need to make some preparations before applying, such as downloading the client software to use the online application and an IC card reader/writer to read your My Number card.
If you complete the necessary procedures to allow these experts to act on your behalf, lawyers and administrative scriveners can also submit an online application.