View Full Version : Changing work type after JET in Japan

March 25th, 2014, 11:44
Okay, so I've done a lot of research and all I'm coming up with is stress and confusion.

I'm currently a JET on my third year. My period of stay runs out the same day as my contract, July 24th. (First, am I correct to assume that it's not technically your visa that expires, but your residency status? I've gathered that your work visa basically expires when you use it to enter the country since it's entry permission and not necessarily residency permission, like the residency status is.)

Anyway. I've been offered a job and the company would like me to start on August 1st; I'll be changing to a humanities visa for a trade-related job. It sounds like the processing time on a residency status change is 1-3 months, though I've heard it's usually closer to two, so I want to get started on all that.

But what worries me is the gap in employment, and it sounds like changing to a tourist visa in between is a no-no (and also requires a return ticket to the US which I have no interest in purchasing just to throw away).
So, I don't really know what I can do. Is it possible for me to apply to have my status change go into effect on July 25th, or will it only apply beginning August 1st?
If it only starts applying on August 1st, what do I do in the meantime? Is there any kind of leeway for people who have found work but can't start yet? Surely, someone in the government must understand that it's not always possible to begin a new job the DAY AFTER your previous job ends.

Thanks for reading; I hope someone has some insight.

March 25th, 2014, 11:48
You should be able to renew and change your visa all at the same time, and well in advance. Contact your local immigration office for advice, as they will be able to help.

March 25th, 2014, 12:18
you could try extending your residence status, remain on a instructor visa until you start work then switch to a humanities. they might not go for this if your contract expires on july 24th.

you could try extending your residence status and switch to a humanities visa at the same time. They might not go for this unless you can get something in writing from your new employer saying you will start work with them on august 1st.

get all your paperwork together and go see the immigration office and ask for some advice, sooner the better.

March 25th, 2014, 14:15
Thanks for the advice.

I decided to speak with my current boss, who's connected to the "immigration specialist" for the prefecture who helps with JET, so it sounds like they can get it sorted out for me. If they manage to handle things, I'll detail the procedures here in case anyone else ends up with this issue and could use the information.

If they can't get it figured out, I might be back with more questions!

March 25th, 2014, 14:55
Please keep us informed.

It should definitely be possible, especially if you have a notification of contract/employment from your new employer. This is not a new thing in Japan I don't think, just not many JETs end up doing it in their third year.

March 25th, 2014, 15:30
You should be ok as long as you have turned in the paperwork to change your visa.

March 25th, 2014, 16:05
You should be ok as long as you have turned in the paperwork to change your visa.

This is basically what my boss said, so that's what it sounds like. I'll be back on here if there are any surprise twists.