There has been an increase in the number of foreigners who consider marrying a Japanese national.
If you are married to a Japanese national and want to live in Japan with him/her, you will need a visa for a Spouse or Child of a Japanese National. It is important that your marriage is legal in Japan. This means that you have lodged your marriage at a municipality office where you reside and it is accepted. De facto partners cannot get a visa for a Spouse or Child of a Japanese National. Also, the assessment becomes stringent for a couple that has met but a few times, because the immigration authority may consider that your relationship is marriage of convenience. It is important to attach evidence of the genuine intimacy, such as letter and/or e-mail correspondence.
Your marriage must be legally recognized in your home country as well as in Japan. The criteria for the marriage to be certified vary with each country and you may need to check thoroughly, through your home country’s consulate office or embassy in Japan if you are already in Japan.
You will need to provide a Certificate of Legal Capacity to Contract a Marriage or equivalent, from your home country to a Japanese government municipality office when you register your marriage in Japan. This is a document that proves that there is no problem associated with the marriage. This document must be accompanied by a Japanese translation.
Some countries do not issue a Certificate of Legal Capacity to Contract a Marriage, or a similar type of document. As an alternative, you can clarify that you are of a marital age in your home country and there is no legal barrier to marrying a Japanese national. This may come from a consular official of your own country, in Japan. You may submit a written oath that has the consular official’s signature instead of the certificate.
If you cannot hand in such a document, further processing becomes difficult. To support your case, you may negotiate with a local government office in Japan with identification documents such as a birth certificate, a citizenship certificate, and a passport, accompanied by Japanese translations of these documents. It is also necessary to provide a copy of the law that concerns marriage in your home country, along with a Japanese translation.
If you marry to a Japanese national and get a Spouse or Child of a Japanese National visa, there would be no limit the type of work you engage in. Our office can help you prepare the necessary documents for the visa application and I, Masami Sato, can act as your proxy. Please feel free to contact us.