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New residency management system

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2012-10-15

Point 1    A "resident card" will be issued.
A resident card will be issued to foreign nationals residing in Japan with long-term resident status.

Point 2   The period of stay will be extended to a maximum of five years.
If a foreign resident currently has a residency period of three years, the period may be extended to five years.
For example, for a foreign national with resident status who is married to a Japanese and classified as a "Spouse or Child of Japanese National," the period of stay is currently one year or three years. Under the new system, it will be changed to one year, three years, or five years.

Point 3   A "special re-entry permit system " will be introduced.
When foreign nationals who have a valid passport and resident status want to re-enter Japan, they are required to apply for a re-entry permit under the current system. However, re-entry permission will no longer be required under the new "resident card" system if they re-enter within a year of departure. (Note that there may be certain cases where a re-entry permit is required.) This is called the "special re-entry permit system." If you leave Japan using the special re-entry permit system, you must re-enter Japan within one year so as not to lose your resident status. If your period of residency expires less than one year after your departure, please be sure to re-enter Japan before the period expires. The maximum validity period of a re-entry permit will be extended from the current three years to five years under the new re-entry permit system.

Point 4   The alien registration system will be abolished.
When the new system goes into effect, the existing alien registration system will be abolished. This will change various notification procedures.
・ When you have moved to a new place => Report it to relevant municipal offices or ward offices. Under the current system, you are only required to report your move to the alien registration counter at the municipal or ward office in the new location. Under the new system, you must first submit a moving-out notification to the municipal office or ward office in the old location, and then submit a moving-in notification to the municipal office or ward office in the new location. Please ensure that your registration is up to date before the new system is introduced.
・ If you have changed your name, birth date, gender, or nationality/region => Report it to the Regional Immigration Bureau.
・ What will happen to alien registration certificates? => The alien registration certificate for foreign nationals residing long term in Japan will continue to serve as a resident card for the time being. Please ensure that you keep your alien registration certificate until you receive your resident card.