Today, I want to share information regarding how to leave Japan temporarily during visa extension processing state (申請中). My visa expired during the golden week (1 May 2016) and I was on the preplanned program to visit JEJU South Korea. It was a very confusing situation. I am going to explain how I succeed to travel on expired Japanese work permit. You just need to explain people in embassy about the rule for the applicant under “visa extension in processing”
Knowledge sharing on an expired working visa with a friend
Firstly I was scared to leave the country at this point due to lack of information. Secondly, I was not having any way to get this knowledge. Fortunately, I was having a meeting with my colleague Jarkko Polvi(Finland passport holder). He has undergone the same situation as me. He told me that you can leave Japan while your visa extension is in the process just be aware to keep your registration card with you, which has stamped “visa extension in processing(申請中)”. You can come back to Japan with an expired visa within 2~3 months from the date of submission of your application.
Finland has visa waiver with Japan so to make sure is it same for Indian passport holder? I wrote down the post on “Indians in Japan” facebook group. The reply was the mix. Some people said it’s ok to leave Japan in your situation while others made it complicated with their 50-50 opinion. I am thankful to all the guys for their suggestion. But to confirm things officially, I consulted my company lawyer and she said it’s ok to leave without any issue.
My story with expired working visa
Finally to make it more than 100% sure I called immigration office regarding this situation and they said its perfect to leave during visa processing. So after this, I was confident and left for Korea. I enjoyed my working with sightseeing and came back after the golden week.
In my case, the only formality I needed to perform was to sign a paper given by airlines. Paper stated that if I will get deported, then only I will be responsible for bearing all the expenses, not the airline. I signed that and proceeded to immigration gates. Both in Korea and Japan, immigration officers didn’t ask me a single thing about my visa status.I safely landed in Japan without any hustle and bustle. The main goal of this post is to spread awareness regarding visa problems. Reference immigration website link.
Immigration rules changes time to time so better to enquire immigration office Shinagawa and consult your lawyer before leaving Japan.This scenario which I explained above is dated 1 May 2016 and its correct according to my personal experience.