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Alien Registration  jp
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Q. What is an alien registration and what should I take particular note of?
A. Under the Alien Registration Law, a foreign national scheduled to reside in Japan for more than 90 days must apply for alien registration. Upon registration, you will be issued an alien registration card, which you must carry with you at all times in place of your passport. Please take note of the following points:
i) Make your alien registration within 90 days of arriving in Japan
All non-Japanese nationals must make an application for alien registration within 90 days of arrival in Japan at the municipal office in their area of residence. Needed documents are the official application for alien registration form, passport and two 4.5cm by 3.5cm photographs.
ii) Signature
When applying for the initial alien registration, replacement of an alien registration card in case of damage, reissue of the alien registration card in case of loss, etc. or renewal of the alien registration, all foreigners over 16 years in age must submit, together with the application form, a signed registration card together with a signed signature card (this becomes the basis for the registered signature).
iii) Carry your alien registration card with you at all times
You must carry your alien registration card with you at all times when you leave your home. When a policeman or other public official requests to see your alien registration card, you are obliged to show it.
Note: Because you must carry your alien registration card with you at all times, there is a chance of loss or theft. Therefore, you should write your alien registration number down and keep it in a safe place. The same goes for your passport.
Q. How do I apply for the initial alien registration, change the content of my registration, renew or return my alien registration card?
A. i) Initial registration
Please make your application for the initial alien registration within 90 days of your arrival in Japan. Municipal offices have an alien registration counter where you should make your application. You need your passport and 2 photographs (4.5cm by 3.5cm) to apply. There are regulations regarding the size and the placement of your face within the photograph, so please inquire at the counter.
The alien registration card is issued at a later date. Therefore, after you submit your application, the counter will issue you a certificate designating the period of its issuance. After registration, it is also possible to have a Proof of Alien Registration issued, although a fee is charged in such cases.
ii) Changes in registered content
If there is a change in your address, if you have renewed your period of stay, if there is a change in your name or if there are any other changes to the content of your registration, you must make a notification of the change(s) in your registered information within 14 days of the change at the municipal office in your area of residency. You will need your alien registration card, documents that evidence the change (a passport in the case that there is a renewal of your period of stay or change in your status of residence).
When you move to a new location, you should make your notification of change at the municipal office in your new area of residency. There is no need to go to the municipal office of your old address.
iii) Confirmation of registration
In principle, a confirmation of registration must be made once every five years. Please make this confirmation within 5 years and 30 days of the basis date written on your alien registration card. To confirm this date, please check the bottom portion of your card. You will need your passport, alien registration card and 2 photographs (4.5cm by 3.5cm) to make this confirmation.
iv) Return of the alien registration card
If you return to your own country upon graduation or go to study in a different country, you must return your alien registration card. The card should be returned directly to the immigration inspector at the airport or port of departure.
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