How can I apply for a visa for my partner?
If you have a visa to work / live in Japan, and you would like to bring your partner to live with you, what kind of visa do you think he / she can apply for?
There is a special type of designated activity visa and he / she can only apply for it once he / she is in Japan. (He / she must come to Japan with another type of visa first, such as a tourist one, and then apply to change the visa )
Can any same sex married couple apply for it?
As a rule, in order to apply for this visa, the same sex marriage should be recognized in both countries.
For example, a Spanish and Brazilian couple can apply for it as both countries approve same sex marriages, but not a Russian and American couple for example, as Russia doesn’t recognize the same sex marriage.
However, according to the immigration office, it is possible to apply for the designated activity visa if the couple gets married properly in the country where the marriage has been approved even if the person’s home country’s law doesn’t approve same sex marriages.
This is one case I made an inquiry to the immigration office, about a Taiwanese and American couple:
The American lady has a job in Japan, and she wants to bring her Taiwanese partner to Japan. The couple got married in America and they have the marriage certificate. As Taiwan won’t approve the same sex marriage this Taiwanese partner doesn’t seem to meet the basic requirement in order to apply for the designated activity visa, but the immigration office said that they wouldn’t reject the application straight away, they would accept the application and examine all the other conditions / documents to decide whether to grant a visa or not.
This doesn’t promise her anything, even if she comes to Japan as a tourist and applies to change her tourist visa to a designated activity visa, her application might be rejected. However, if there are any other types of visa that she could try, then you might want to consider them as the last option.
If your country legally recognizes some form of civil union, then it works the same as the above case, it is POSSIBLE to apply for it, not to be rejected straight away.
What about Japanese and other nationalities?
If you are Japanese, and want to bring your same sex partner from other countries, then it is not possible for him / her to apply for a designated activity visa. The only way for him / her to come to Japan and live with you is to get the other types of visa, such as a working visa or a student visa. You might have heard that some ward office provides you with the certificate of partnership, but this doesn’t mean anything when it comes to a visa as Japanese law doesn’t approve same sex marriages.
Being married legally is only one condition that you need to consider, like any other married couple’s case. We must consider other conditions such as the financial side, housing, sincerity of the couple’s relationship etc.
If you are the same sex married couple like my clients and looking for the support, or you have some questions about Japan visa and immigration, please contact us through the consultation form.
Visa Navi Japan
Address : Ootemachi ko-ta-su 802 Ootemachi 5-14-10, Naka-ku, Hiroshima, Japan 730-0051
Open Hours : 9:00 – 19:00 Closed : Monday
TEL & FAX : 082-258-4554