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Expired Visa but leaving japan.. 2008/1/29 19:31
Good Evening, I would like to ask regarding the immigration procedures of Japan. My sister is currently residing in niigata, her visa expired last december and has applied for a visa extension november last year. However, until now her visa has not been approved yet. She came up with a decision to leave japan and come back home here in the Philippines. She does not wish to wait for the renewal anymore. She wishes to go home as soon as possible, but she has fears that she might be charged with overstaying. Is there any possibilities or any laws regarding this matter? Would she be able to come home without any hassles from the immigration? I mean can she come home without being questioned or her being holded at the exit airport? What would be the best possible and fastest way for her to come back? And lastly, what is the procedure regarding this matter? She has a spouse visa btw..
by John 29  

. 2008/1/30 09:23
She has a spouse visa, and renewing it, so I assume she is married to a Japanese person.

Have her husband look into why it is taking so long to renew it.
Since she is renewing it I assume she wants to return to Japan in the future.

She can't return to Japan if she leaves without applying for a new visa, and I don't think she can get a re-entry permit with an expired visa.

The first thing I would do before anything else is see why it is taking so long for a renewal.
by John rate this post as useful

. 2008/1/30 09:24
This is a tricky situation because if her spouse visa was denied and now she has an expired visa, that is tough. Erh I mean her period of stay is expired.
by John rate this post as useful

Expired Visa but leaving japan.. 2008/1/30 18:11
Actually they are divorced already. 1 of the reasons why she opted not to wait anymore and does not wish to come back to japan. Any advices regarding this matter? They dont have a child also. She really wanted to get out of japan as soon as possible.
by John 29 rate this post as useful

Immigration office before airport 2008/1/30 22:13
She should go to the Immigration office and explain that she wants to leave Japan. If she goes to the airport she is more likely to be detained there.
by Sira rate this post as useful

Expired Visa but leaving japan.. 2008/1/31 17:01
Actually its not her fault that her visa expired. It was renewed last november though the expiration was december, but until now it has'nt been released. Due to certain circumstances, she is forced to come back here and is willing to accept she wont be able to come back to japan. She has her new re-entry permit which means that she does actually had been to the immigration.
by John 29 rate this post as useful

. 2008/1/31 17:10
She applied for renewal in November for her spouse visa, but then divorced? This could be one of the reasons why it is taken so long for it to be renewed in the first place.

If you go to Immigration with an explanation of what is going on, have a plane ticket ready to leave with no intention of every returning, then I don't see any problems.

by John. rate this post as useful

. 2008/1/31 17:11
I mean the Immigration office and not the Immigration at the airport.

Have the situation layed out pretty clearly.
by John rate this post as useful

Expired Visa but leaving japan.. 2008/1/31 18:03
You mean she should buy her plane ticket first before going to the immigration?
by John 29 rate this post as useful

Expired Visa but leaving japan.. 2008/2/1 18:46
do you guys think that she wont have any problems regarding her situation? need comforting answers badly...
by John 29 rate this post as useful

... 2008/2/1 19:19
Are you saying that she has submitted an application for extension of her period of stay weeks ago and still not received a response. In this case, her passport is still with the immigration authorities, isn't it. In this case, you have to inquire at the immigration office and tell them that you need to leave the country. Then, they will give you back your passport and probably explain how to proceed with respect to the extension application. That is my understanding. In any case, I recommend to consult the immigration office as early before leaving Japan as possible.
by Uji rate this post as useful

Expired Visa but leaving japan.. 2008/2/1 19:50
Thanks uji for replying. Actually, her passport was returned already and the immigration authorities told her that they'd be calling her when her visa is ready. Quite confusing huh? Although she has her re-entry permit updated, which means that she did went to the immigrations. She's in doubt that she might have problems exiting japan that is why im making these inquiries. What is the 1st necessary move for her? Purchase an airline ticket then head for the immigration? Or immigration 1st then the ticket? What is basically the immigration procedures over there at japan with regards to matters like this?
by John 29 rate this post as useful

. 2008/2/1 20:30
I think you guys are overly concerned over nothing. She hasn't overstayed her period of stay. She applied to renew her visa before her visa expired, right? She should have a stamp that proves this in her passport. She's free to leave the country whenever she pleases.

Have her call the immigration office just to make sure if she's so worried.
by K rate this post as useful

... 2008/2/1 21:56
Reading your comments, I get the suspicion that your sister actually already successfully got her extension of stay and that the confusion is based on a misunderstanding of the terms "visa"!

Technically speaking, a visa is a document required to enter Japan. When entering Japan, immigration takes a look at the visa, puts your "status of residence" stamp (e.g. spouse of Japanese national) into the passport and invalidates the visa. You now have a status of residence, and your visa is invalid ("used up"). This is confusing, because in everyday language, everybody says "I am here on a working visa". But in fact, the visa refers only to the document that is required to enter Japan. It gets "replaced" by your "status of residence" once you enter Japan.

When you extend your stay in Japan, you do not need a visa, because you apply for the extension from within Japan (visa is only needed to enter Japan). Again, in common language, people refer to it as "extending a visa", which is a wrong terminology and maybe the confusion of your problem.

So, what should your sister do?

She should take a look into her passport. In her passport, there should be three types of stickers inserted by Japanee immigration:

Type 1: Visa
This is the largest type of sticker. Almost as big as a passport page. At the top it says "Japan Visa". This is the document that your sister used to initially enter Japan. It is invalid since your sister initially entered Japan

Type 2: Landing Permission
This is a smaller orange sticker that indicates the status of residence and period of stay (start and expiry date). This is the document, common people inaccurately refer to as "visa". If your sister has such a sticker in her passport and the expiry date is a date in the future, she has absolutely nothing to worry about!

Type 3: Re-entry permit
This looks similar to the Landing Permission sticker and also has an expiry date on it. If she has such a sticker, she can re-enter Japan on her current status of residence until the expiry date.


If she has a valid "Landing Permission" sticker in her passport, she has nothing to worry about. If not, then I recommend her to contact the immigration bureau and ask for consultation.
by Uji rate this post as useful

Expired Visa but leaving japan.. 2008/2/2 16:29
Thank you guys so much for the reply. I guess this clears things up. Thanks K and most especially uji. We do understand now more clearly regarding visa's and stuffs. Again, i could not thank you more...
by John 29 rate this post as useful

... 2008/2/2 17:38
I hope she found a valid Landing Permission sticker in her passport.
by Uji rate this post as useful

Expired Visa but leaving japan.. 2008/2/2 18:00
Yup, she did found a valid landing permission which expires on October this year. Again, thank you so much for clearing things up.
by John 29 rate this post as useful

Last question.. 2008/2/14 15:06
Does the landing permission get renewed everytime you enter japan? I mean, she entered japan last october, does it mean that her permission expires on october this year?
by John 29 rate this post as useful

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