How to get spouse visa ( Haigusha visa = 配偶者ビザ )to live in Japan

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Spouse of Japanese national and visa

Assumed that you are female non Japanese national and married with Japanese national ( Husband ) living in your home country.

If you want to live in Japan, you need to obtain status of residence ( zairyu shikaku = 在留資格, visa ) in Japan.

Without this status of residence, you cannot live in Japan legally. ( Excluding the case you have other kind of status of residence in Japan).

In this case, you can obtain, what is called

” spouse visa ( Legally speaking, status of residence of spouse or child of  Japanese national  = 日本人の配偶者等 )”


And in order to obtain spouse visa ( status of residence of spouse or child of  Japanese national ), you need to prepare some documents.

At first I will explain ” Certificate of Eligibility = COE ( 在留資格認定証明書 = zairyu shikaku nintei shomeisho )”.

This is the most important documents to obtain this status of residence in Japan.

” Certificate of Eligibility = COE ( 在留資格認定証明書 = zairyu shikaku nintei shomeisho )” is documents that can prove your eligibility to enter  Japan and live in Japan.

And it will take several months to obtain this paper after your application for COE.(Generally it will take 2 or 3 months after application in Japan)

If you have obtained this ” Certificate of Eligibility = COE ( 在留資格認定証明書 = zairyu shikaku nintei shomeisho )”, you need to prepare other necessary documents to obtain status of residence and you can visit embassy of Japan in your home country.


Though you can find some information to obtain Certificate of Eligibility = COE at website of Immigration Bureau of Japan ( Nyukoku kanri kyoku = 入国管理局 ) in English language, they do not provide necessary information precisely.


Moreover, even if you call to authority to ask something, they are always busy and no one will answer your phone call.


Actually, they are not kind to persons who try to live in Japan.

Regarding immigration policy of authority, Japan is still closed society..
(If you do not want to spend your time to understand this process but want to obtain status of residence to live in Japan, you do not need to read this page. But, you can just contact with me. I will guide necessary process. )

Necessary documents to obtain certificate of eligibility related to spouse of Japanese national


In order to obtain certificate of eligibility, you need to fill in application forms.

You can acquire application form of certificate of eligibility .
This is part of application form of certificate of eligibility ( COE ) in Japan.
part of application form of certificate of eligibility coe

On this application form, you need to attach your picture.

Sample of picture.
picture of application form of certificate of eligibility coe Japan

The size of picture should be 4cm×3cm.

And the picture should be  clear and if there is background, it is not available.


It should be taken within 6 months before the application for COE.


When you take this picture, you must not cover your  head with hat etc.


You need to write your name on the back of the photo and paste it to the application form of COE.


You need to prepare one copy of this picture.


Even if you have a printer in your house, you can not use it.

You should go to photo shop.

You also need to submit stamped (380 yen stamp), self‐addressed envelope.

On the envelope, you write “かんいかきとめ =registered mail”.
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Japanese government can not send papers to foreign country.
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So, you need to write down domestic address. You and your husband do not have legal address in Japan, you can write address and name of parents of your husband (referred to “parents”).

sample of envelope in making application for COE in Japan
When you submit necessary documents to get certificate of eligibility ( COE ), you need to submit it to immigration bureau in Japan. You and your husband are not in Japan. So, parents can submit necessary paper on your behalf.

(If you do not have any relatives in Japan, you need to find someone in Japan.)
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And when immigration office issues COE, it sends it to parents.
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You also need to submit certified copy of your spouse’s ( = Japanese national ) family register ( Koseki tohon = 戸籍謄本 ).
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It will cost 450 yen to be issued. ). One copy is required.
family register Koseki, Japan
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In the case, your spouse has notified city hall in Japan of your marriage, but it is not still registered, you need to acquire certificate of acceptance of application for marriage ( Kon in todoke juri shomei sho = 婚姻届出受理証明書 ).

Certified copy of your spouse’s ( = Japanese national ) family register ( Koseki tohon = 戸籍謄本 ) and certificate of acceptance of application for marriage ( Kon in todoke juri shomei sho = 婚姻届出受理証明書 ) must be issued within three months before this application.
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Old papers are not available in this application.

Certified copy of your spouse’s ( = Japanese national ) family register ( Koseki tohon = 戸籍謄本 ) and certificate of acceptance of application for marriage ( Kon in todoke juri shomei sho = 婚姻届出受理証明書 ) is issued by city hall.

Parents submit necessary documents to obtain COE on your behalf. So, certified copy of parents that can prove relation between your husband and his parents is necessary.
In the case a Japanese national has his / her domicile ( Jusho = 住所 )in Minato ward, Tokyo prefecture and honseki address in Chuo ward, Tokyo prefecture, Minato ward city hall can issue Juminhyo ( certificate of his / her domicile ) and Chuo ward city hall can issue  Certified copy of your spouse’s ( = Japanese national ) family register ( Koseki tohon = 戸籍謄本 ) and certificate of acceptance of application for marriage ( Kon in todoke juri shomei sho = 婚姻届出受理証明書 ).
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You also need to submit certificate of your spouse’s domicile, resident certificate (Juminhyo = 住民票).
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This certificate should specify all members of your spouse’s family.
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When your spouse acquires this certificate, he needs to acquire  Juminhyo of “setai zen in = 世帯全員”, meaning ” All family members.”
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This certificate must be issued within three months before of this application.
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If your spouse does not have legal domicile in Japan, he cannot obtain certificate of his domicile.
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In that case, you need to find a sponsor who can submit his certificate for your application. In this case, parents will submit their certificate of residence.

You also need to submit your spouse’s Nozei shomei sho ( 納税証明書 )of resident tax.
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This paper certifies your spouse’s ( Japanese national ) amount of taxable income of resident tax and amount of payment of this tax.
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In the case, this certificate does not specify amount of taxable income of resident tax and amount of payment of this resident tax ( Jumin zei ), you need to submit both Nozei shomei sho and Kazei shomei sho.
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Kazei shomeisho also certificates your spouse’s taxable income and amount of resident tax.

This certificate is issued by city hall where that has jurisdiction over your spouse’s domicile ( Jusho ).
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This certificate must be issued within three months before of this application.
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In the case you and your spouse do not income Japan ( your spouse cannot prove his income in Japan. ), you need to find a sponsor who can sustain your living in Japan. In this case, parents will be your sponsor in Japan.
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The sponsor is required to submit Nozei shomei sho and Kazei shomeisho that can prove the amount of his income in Japan. .

You also need to submit letter of guarantee ( Mimoto hosho sho = 身元保証書 ) written by your spouse.
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.If you and your spouse does not legal domicile in Japan, your sponsor who has legal domicile should write this paper..
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As far as your spouse has domicile in Japan, he/she needs to fill in this paper.
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Sample of letter of guarantee.
Letter of guarantee
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Your husband ( Japanese national ) and you do not have job in Japan.
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Immigration office think that you and your spouse can not sustain your living in Japan and depend on public welfare.
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If your spouse ( Japanese national ) can come to Japan in advance and find job, it is much better.

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In the case of process in immigration bureau, meaning of ”  endorser ” is different from ” surety ” in civil law.
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Endorser states that an applicant ( who makes application for visa status ) will keep law of Japan and will not cause any trouble in Japan.
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However she is not responsible for civil liability.
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So, even if you do not repay your debt in Japan, ” endorser ” is not responsible for repayment of your debt.
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However, if a foreign national does not keep law of Japan and cause trouble in Japan,  your endorser  will lose his trust from immigration bureau.

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In the case you have not married based on Japanese law, but only in foreign country, your spouse’s family register does not prove your marriage.
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In this case, you still need to provide your spouse’s family register.
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Because, you need to prove that your spouse does not have spouse other than you.

However, it is better that your spouse files marriage with city hall in Japan.
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And you also need to prepare ” Wedding Certificate “.
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( It is not written in Japanese language. So, you need to prepare translation of it.
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Translation by professional is not required.
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If you order me, I can translate it into Japanese language, as far as it is written in English language.
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If you order professional translation company, they will charge a lot of money.
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In case of legal documents, the amount of their fee is very high. )
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In the case there is a system of family register in your home country, you need to provide certified copy of family register.
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You also need to submit ” written inquiry = shitsumon sho = 質問書 “.
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In this document, immigration bureau officer investigates whether your marriage is fake or not.
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If they think there is not substance in your marriage, they will not issue COE.
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Officers of immigration bureau have much experience in looking at application form of certificate of eligibility than you.
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If you make false statement in this document, they must find out and they will reject your application.
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Once you have tried to deceive them, they keep such information and share it with other immigration office.

In that case, you can not delete your bad record.
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Unfortunately, there are a lot of applications based on fake marriage and most of them are relating to Yakuza group in Japan.

Owing to such kind of person, attitude of officers of immigration bureau has become harsh.


Example of inquiry.


1 Are you living with your spouse in the same house ?
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If your answer is “no “, Immigration officer may doubt that your marriage is fake.
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2 What is your spouse’s occupation, name of workplace, address of workplace, telephone number etc.

In the case, a person who does not have any work in Japan. He/she want money to sustain his/her living.

And Gang group may give him/her money in exchange for making fake marriage with foreign national.
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On the other hand in the case a foreign national wants to work in Japan, he/she may ask someone ( it should be gang group ) to find a fake spouse in Japan.
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If he/she can find spouse in Japan, he/she can work in Japan.
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And she may give gang enough money.

Even if at the moment of contact with gang, foreign national does not have enough money, he/she can give gang group emerged from salary in Japan.

( Gang group will introduce her a job. That may be adult entertainment business = Fuzoku. )

So, in the case spouse does not have work in Japan, officer of immigration bureau may doubt that he/she makes fake marriage to get money.


3  When, where, how did you meet with your spouse ? How did you decide to marry your spouse ?

In the case, you have picture, record of mail, email or record of international phone call, please submit it to prove your relationship..

( You and your spouse should have taken many pictures.

You and your spouse should have been taken in same pictures.

You and your spouse should have sent many love letters each other.

Though, you may think this is invasion of your privacy, you need to provide such materials. )

You also need to provide pictures of you and your spouse.

You and your spouse should be shown in the same pictures.

Snapshots of you as a couple.

You need to prepare enough number of pictures that can clarify substance of your marriage.




When you fill in inquiry paper, you need to deliberate intention of immigration office.
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Why does he want to know the information ?
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If the amount of your spouse’s income is low, how can he support your living in Japan ?
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He may think that your husband has made fake marriage to get income.

In the case room area of your spouse is not enough, he may think that you and your spouse do not have intention to live in same house.

It must be fake marriage.
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In the case there is a wide gap between your age and spouse’s age, he may not understand why you have decided to marry such a old person ?

You may just want a spouse visa ?
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In the case your husband can not English language and you cannot understand Japanese language, how can you communicate with each other ?
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He may think you and your spouse do not have any chance to communicate with, because it is fake marriage.

In the case, you make this application by proxy ( Dairi nin = 代理人 ), you need to provide certificate that can prove his/her power.

But, even if you have a Japanese friend who lives in Japan, you can not appoint him/her as your proxy.
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But family member of you or your spouse who lives in Japan can be your proxy.

In that case, you  need to provide documents that can certificate kinship.( family register of parents )

You can also hire lawyer ( Bengoshi ) or administrative scrivener ( Gyosei shoshi ) to make this application on your behalf.
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However, they will charge several hundred thousand yen and most of them can not understand foreign language.
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If you have prepared all documents above, you can make application to obtain certificate of eligibility. Parents can visit immigration bureau and submit necessary documents.

After application of certificate of eligibility, you need to wait for 1 to 3 months to be issued.
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And fortunately, you have received certificate of eligibility from immigration bureau of Japan, you need to land in Japan within period of validity of this certificate.
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Period of validity of  is 3 months from its issuance of certificate of eligibility.

Parents can visit immigration bureau to receive COE and they can send this certificate to you by post.

Once you have received certificate of eligibility, you can make application for visa status in your home country.
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( If immigration office in Japan has rejected application for COE,  you can ask reason of rejection.  And after you have solved reason of rejection, you can make application again )

Process to obtain spouse visa ( Status of residence of spouse of Japanese national ) is easier than COE.
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Spouse visa will be issued around one week once you successfully make application.
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At first you need to find Japanese embassy or consulate in your home country.
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Then, you can visit there and make application.
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Necessary documents to make application for spouse visa.

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1 Certificate of eligibility ( COE )

2 Your passport.

3  Your picture.
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   The size of picture should be 5 cm × 5 cm.
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.   This size of different from picture on application form of certificate of eligibility.
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Condition of picture is as same as picture of application form of certificate of eligibility.
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4  Inquiry form.

5  Some fees to make application of visa. It will cost about 3000 yen.
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( You need to pay it in foreign currency. In the case $1 = 100, if you apply for visa in America, you will pay  about $30. )
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If you have received visa from embassy or consulate of Japan, you can come to Japan and live there.

If embassy or consular in your home country has rejected your application, though you have obtained COE, you cannot ask the reason of rejection.

And you can not apply for same application within 6 months.
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If you need any help who resides in Japan, I will be of your help.

Divorce or die of your spouse.

In the case you have obtain status of residence of spouse or child of Japanese national and have lived in Japan.

However unfortunately you have divorced or your spouse ( Japanese national ) passed away.

In that case you need to notify immigration of the matter within 14 days from divorce or left of your spouse.

If you do not fulfill this duty, it will effect extension of stay in Japan or change of category of status of residence in Japan.

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Please do not hesitate to make contact with me.

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