Re-entry Permit Japan Application When Leaving Japan Temporarily (Make Things Smooth!!!)

When you want to leave Japan temporarily, REMEMBER to apply for a “Re-entry Permit.” OR the “Special Re-entry Permit” depending on your status of residence and your period of stay.

What Is A Re-entry Permit?


A Re-entry Permit is a permit you can get when you want to leave Japan temporarily, and come back to Japan. 



Although, you have an expiration date on this special system. The maximum validity of the re-entry permit is 5 Years. Before the new system came in, it was 3 years, so now you got 2 more years of validity! 



BUT, IF the period of your status of residence is under 5 years, the expiration date of the Re-entry is going to be 5 years, so you got to be careful about the timing! 



For Special Permanent Residence, the expiration date of Re-entry is going to be 6 years. 



Interesting Isn’t It?



Why You Need To Apply ForThe Re-entry Permit


To continue with your activities in Japan, IF you’re coming back with the same status of residence, you would want to apply for a re-entry permit to come back.



When you forget to apply for a re-entry permit when you are departing Japan, you get your status of residence REVOKED. (BE CAREFUL!) 



Who Is Qualified To Get The Re-entry Permit?


Foreigners who can apply for Re-entry is…

  • Foreigners with the status of residence of Mid To Long Term Stay
  • Planning to come back to Japan within your period of stay



2 Types of “Re-entry Permits” Single & Double


Single: Re-entry is permitted only for one entry and departure

Multiple: Re-entry can be repeated during the permitted period



How To Apply For A Re-entry Permit


How the Re-entry permit system works is you must go to the Immigration bureau that has the jurisdiction over the address of the applicant. 



Submit your application form, residence card and your passport to the counter. The fee is paid by attaching an income stamp to the payment form (Income stamp fee is 3,000 yen for a single and 6,000 yen for a multiple.)



When you pay for your application, you will be required to fill in the form of a certificate for payment of the fee. You can print and fill out the payment form, or you can get the print from the local immigration office if you do not have a way to print it.




IF you can’t figure out how to fill the forms or buy an Income Stamp, ask the Local Immigration Bureau to give you a hand. Income stamps can be purchased at your nearby convenience stores.



When you DON’T own a valid passport, you MUST fill in a form where you need to write down the reasons for not owning a valid passport. 



Re-entry permits are permitted on the day of the application.



Who can apply?

Not only the person themself but also the staff and administrative scriveners who have received the permission to take the application order can perform it on behalf of the person.



Special Re-entry Permit



Since July 9, 2012, a new residency management system has started. The new system that they put in is, “Special Re-entry Permit.”By having this system, it is not required to go to immigration anymore, you can leave Japan temporarily & Re-enter Japan EASILY. 



Foreign nationals who fall under the “Special Re-entry Permit” are those who re-enter Japan within one year of leaving Japan.



Special permanent residents are valid for two years.



How to apply for Special Re-entry permit in Japan


A special re-entry permit is a system that is a simple system that you only have to fill the ED card (Embarkation Card, Disembarkation Card) at the airport. There is no fee.


(Reference: Ministry of Justice Immigration Bureau)


At the time of departure, you need to check the either 1. Or 2.

  1. I am leaving Japan temporarily and will return.
  2. I do not plan to re-enter Japan while my re-entry permit is valid


For foreigners who apply for a special re-entry permit, check column 1.

If you already applied for a re-entry permit and not return within one year, you need to check column 2.



At the time of immigration, give the filled-out ED card and passport to the examiner and inform them that they wish to “re-enter the country.” You will also bring your residence card with you. 



The Examiner is going to check the departure column on the right side of your ED Card and if there is no problem, the Examiner will put the “Arrival” part of the ED card on your passport. 


When you Re-enter Japan, sign the form that says “Arrival.” Then, check all the required columns on the form and you should be able to Re-enter Japan.




Foreigners not eligible for a Special re-entry permit

Foreign nationals falling under any of the following, are not eligible for a Special Re-entry Permit, and are required to obtain an ordinary re-entry permit:

  • A foreign national whose status of residence is under procedures for revocation;
  • A foreign national for whom confirmation of departure is being deferred;
  • A foreign national for whom a written detention order has been issued;
  • A foreign national who stays in Japan with the status of residence for “Designated Activities” while applying for recognition of refugee status;
  • A foreign national who is specified by the Minister of Justice to be a threat to Japan’s national interests or public order, or for other good reasons to require a re-entry permit for the sake of fair control of entries and departures.


(★Reference: Immigration Services Agency of Japan) 



Leaving Japan during the Renewal Procedure


The status of residence can be renewed approximately 3 months before the expiration of the period of stay. If you have completed the renewal procedure (in the case of a period of stay within 3 months1/2 has passed), and the period expires until the permission to renew your status of residence expires, you can stay until the permission is granted or 2 months after the expiration date of the renewal period.





In the case of status of residence expired on Feb 1, 2020

 If your renewal application date is Jan 20, 2020

 Period of stay: April 1, 2020

 or the earliest day before permission to renew the status of residence is granted.



Therefore, if you are in the process of renewing the period above, you must re-enter Japan by April 1, 2020. Please strictly observe the deadline that is communicated at the departure counter and re-enter Japan.



 Besides, you may be asked to present an (Application Acceptance Slip) when you complete the renewal procedure by your departure destination, so you may want to leave the country with a copy.



It is still POSSIBLE to Re-enter Japan even though you are renewing your status of residence. But be careful, if the validity period of the status of residence is less than one year at the time of departure, you must be re-entered by the date of expiration of the period of stay.



Be prepared for the additional documents


YES!!! You can leave the country during the renewal process, but you need to be able to respond if you are asked for additional documents for the renewal process while you are away.



 There is a chance where the immigration office is going to ask you to submit additional documents, you should submit them if requested, only the documents you have submitted will be reviewed.



 It is good if you have family members who live in Japan, so if you have additional documents required from the immigration bureau, your family member can respond on behalf of you.



In case you are not, we SUGGEST you consult an expert for the status of residence especially if the renewal deadline is close and you must complete the procedure smoothly.



 In principle, an administrative scrivener’s office that allows you to apply for the status of residence of the person in question, so please consult them if you have any problems or concerns.



Re-entry Permit (Special Re-entry Permit) How To Extend The Period



The Special Re-entry Permit is a convenient system for foreigners because there are no complicated procedures required. 



However, unlike “Re-entry permit”, the expiration date cannot be extended, so if you do not re-enter the country within one year after leaving the country (special permanent residents are within 2 years), your status of residence will expire. 



You can extend the validity period of your re-entry permit outside of Japan IF you are a Special Permanent Residence. The Immigration allows up to 7 years of Re-entry period for Special Permanent Residence



Other foreigners with different statuses of residence have a Re-entry period up to 6 years from the day approval of your Re-entry to Japan. It is not possible to extend beyond these periods. 



Besides, it is not possible to extend beyond the period of stay.



Application for extension of the validity period of the re-entry permit shall be made within the validity period of the re-entry permit that you currently have. Please follow the general rule, if the validity period has expired, it cannot be extended.



(Reference: Procedures For Extending The Validity Period of Re-Entry Permit)



Make Things Smooth with Re-entry (Special re-entry) permit



As you know now, it is VERY IMPORTANT to understand and to apply early or you MIGHT not be able to Re-enter Japan with the current visa status.



WE HOPE this article will lead you to have a smooth procedure when you apply for a “Re-entry Permit” OR “Special Re-entry Permit”




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