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Changing tourist to spouse visa once in Japan?

philgp

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Hi all

I have a Child of Japanese National visa (3 year validity), and my wife is entering Japan with me next week. It's not possible to apply for her visa before entering Japan due to time constraints.

We have return tickets to Japan but the return date is not within 3 months. The reason is that I am expecting to make an application for her (spouse visa) once in Japan.

My local Japanese embassy has said that for my wife to enter the country on a tourist visa with intention to convert to spouse visa is not allowed, so she will have to say that she intends to sightsee and leave within 3 months (=length of tourist visa).

What is the best way to approach this situation? Will it "wash" to tell the truth and say that we are expecting to get a spouse visa for her, and (obviously) if it doesn't work then she will have to buy a ticket out of Japan at that point, or change the return date on the ticket we have (there is a date change policy on our tickets, so that won't cause an issue)?

OR is it better to just say that she is sightseeing (and possibly not even mention that we are married)? In that case she can provide an exit date that falls within three months and just update that status later if/when she gets her visa.

Your advice is much appreciated. Thanks for reading!
 

Mike Cash

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Why would you contemplate at the airport telling Immigration officials you intend to do the very thing the Japanese government has already explicitly told you that you are not allowed to do?

You do realize that hoping it will "wash" is the same as hoping they will ALLOW her to do what is NOT ALLOWED, don't you?

Try that and you risk her not even being allowed in on a tourist visa, but being placed on a plane right back out of the country. I would hate to have to try again to enter Japan with a record of having been denied entry in the past. Probably not impossible, but probably not pleasant either.

Either come in right, or keep your mouth shut at the airport.
 
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bakaKanadajin

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It sounds like you're over 20 and did not take your Japanese nationality.
If you are not a Japanese national I think things will be stricter.
Foreigners trying to get spousal visas when married to Japanese nationals - that alone is usually a process supported by several years of married life in Japan and an impeccable tax payment record.
I don't see your 3-year visa supporting a successful spousal visa application within a 3 month window.

Whatever the folks at the airport say, best result will be a 3 month tourist visa, whether you spill the beans or not. That won't change because shes not Japanese and has no visa, so, tourist visa, that's all she can get at the door.
Whatever you choose to do after that, again, I suspect you will not have the requisites to support her application or that the process will be possible within the timeline you've mentioned, as foreigners in Japan do not typically get visas turned-around like that even when married to true nationals.
 

philgp

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Thanks for your thoughts guys - she entered on a tourist visa, then we applied for her spouse visa the other day and explained everything. The person at the Shinagawa immigration bureau was quite helpful and told us we should get the result within 3 months. In which case she may need to exit once (luckily I have family in HK).

Will let you know how it goes.

Best
Phil
 

Glenski

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My local Japanese embassy has said that for my wife to enter the country on a tourist visa with intention to convert to spouse visa is not allowed
Scare tactic. Totally bogus. Glad you could make it.

BTW, confirm with immigration that she does NOT have to leave as long as the visa application is still pending. In fact, leaving might invalidate it. I repeat, confirm!!!
 
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