SKILLED LABOR

The Status of Residence called "Skilled Labor" is applied to those who engage in a skilled profession which requires industrial skills such as Chef/Cook of foreign cuisine, Sommelier, Chaser of Jewelry, Athlete, Animal trainer, Pilot and other occupations that requires special skills.

 

Legal requirements are different for each category (see below). You have to satisfy carreer and academic requirements particular to your country. Considering not only the applicant’s career but circumstances of the employer, the Immigration Bureau will grant you a permission to reside in Japan with a specific period of stay.

 

Examples of activities (occupation/profession) which apply to "Skilled Labor visa":

Cook/Chef/Patissier of Foreign Cuisine|Sommelier|Sports Instructor/Trainer|Pilot|Animal Trainer|Craftsman for Jewelry/Metal/Fur|Engineer or Craftsman for Foreign Architecture and/or Civil Engineering|Engineer, Craftsman and Repairman for Foreign Products/Goods|Excavation and Investigation for Oil Exploration|etc.

Criteria & Requirements

To acquire the Skilled Labor visa, the applicant must fall under any of the following categories and must receive no less salary than a Japanese national would receive for comparable work.

 

COOK / CHEF / PATISSIER

The applicant must have more than 10 years relevant experience (including both educational experience and work experience) in the field of Foreign Cuisine (French, Italian, Indian, Chinese, Thai and other cuisine which is special and unique in Japan) and will engage in the activity which requires his/her skills while staying in Japan.

 

The applicant must be able to prove his/her 10 years experience and have some certificate(s)  of employment, as well as pictures showing him cooking and the restaurants, and copies of the menus. Without these, the application procedure will be much more difficult.

 

If the applicant is a Chinese national, he/she can work as a cook in a Chinese restaurant in Japan, but not in an Italian restaurant for example. The applicant must be experienced in a traditional cuisine of his/her home country to acquire this visa.

 

Exception is made for Thailand Cook/Chef. Japan and Thailand made an economic partnership agreement on 1st of November 2007 and only the requirements below shall be applied:

 

⚫︎ More than 5 years relevant work experience as a Chef/Cook in Thailand.

⚫︎ Qualified as Thailand National Skills Standard Thai Cooking Certificate level 1 or above.

 

[Note]

If you would like apply for a "Skilled Labor visa" as a cook, you must have cooking skills enough to serve any full-course dinner or have at least a license equivalent to it. Even if you have more than 10 years experience, your application will be denied if your experience is not recognized as "Skilled Cook/Chef". For example, having experience at small restaurants which have only a  very few items on the menu is not enough to be approved as "Skilled Labor".

 

SOMMELIER

The applicant must have more than 5 years relevant experience (including both educational experience and work experience) in the field of evaluation, quality management and sales of wine and will engage in the activity as a sommelier in Japan. The applicant must also fulfil one the following criteria:

 

⚫︎ A person who has achieved excellent results in international competition regarding tasting wine such as international sommelier concours.

⚫︎ A person who has taken part in international sommelier concours which contestants are limited to one person per country.

⚫︎ A person who has qualification or license authorized under national and public organization regarding skills of wine tasting and evaluation.

 

ARCHITECT / CIVIL ENGINEERING

The applicant must have more than 10 years relevant experience (including both educational experience and work experience) in the field of Foreign Architecture or Civil Engineering and will engage in the activity which requires his/her skills while staying in Japan.

 

More than 5 years work experience shall be enough in case the applicant will engage in the activity under direction of a foreign engineer who have more than 10 years experience in the field of foreign architecture and civil engineering.

 

SPECIALIST IN MANUFACTURE OF REPAIR OF FOREIGN PRODUCT

The applicant must have more than 10 years relevant experience (including both educational experience and work experience) in the field of manufacture and repair of foreign products and will engage in the activity which requires his/her skills while staying in Japan.

 

JEWELLER AND FURRIER

The applicant must have more than 10 years relevant experience (including both educational experience and work experience) in the field of manufacture and repair of foreign products and will engage in the activity which requires his/her skills while staying in Japan.

 

ANIMAL TRAINER

The applicant must have more than 10 years relevant experience (including both educational experience and work experience) in the field of manufacture and repair of foreign products and will engage in the activity which requires his/her skills while staying in Japan.

 

AIRCRAFT PILOT

The applicant must have more than 1,000 hours of flight experience and will engage in the activity as a pilot in Japan.

 

SPORTS INSTRUCTOR/TRAINER

The applicant must have more than 3 years relevant experience (including both educational experience and work experience) as a sports instructor or trainer and will engage in the activity as a sports instructor/trainer in Japan. Or, the applicant has taken part in an international athletic competition such as world championship or the Olympics as an athlete and will engage in the activity as a sports instructor/trainer in Japan.

​Period of Stay

Period of Stay in each case shall be designated by the Immigration Office. The period must be either of 5 years, 3 years, 1 year, or 3 months.

 

If you wish to stay more years under the same Status of Residence you already have, you can apply for renewing your visa 3 months before the expiration of the period of stay.

Necessary documents for the application

You are required to prepare supporting documents which can certify that the contents of the application are true and correct. Supporting documents varies depending on the situation of each applicant and the employer. However, the following items would definitely be necessary:

Evidence of the applicant’s experience and qualification

⚫︎ Two ID pictures (4x3cm)

⚫︎ Resume, CV

⚫︎ Documents which certify educational experience (Diploma, Certificate of Graduate)

⚫︎ Documents which certify your work experience (Certificate of Employment)

(A) For Cook/Chef: Detailed description of the past restaurants they have been working for, the number of seats, number of employees, copies of the menus, pictures, and maybe more upon request.

⚫︎ Documents which certify your qualification

(A) For Sports instructor/trainer: Proof that you have participated in international competitions such as the Olympics or World Championship

(B) For Sommelier: Proof that you participated in International competitions with excellent results

Evidence of the applicant’s activities in Japan and terms of employment

⚫︎ Documents which certify the employment and salary while the applicant stays in Japan (Employment Agreement/Contract, Certificate of Employment, etc.)

Evidence of the employer

⚫︎ Company's Brochure/Leaflet

⚫︎ Certificate of Company’s Registered Matters of the Company

⚫︎ Financial Statements for the past fiscal year* 

* In case of a new company: 1-year Business Plan, Notification of the establishment of salary payment office, Payment slip for Withholding Tax (past 3 months) or Application for Payment of Withholding Income Tax on a Semiannual

⚫︎ Any certificate among supporting documents has to be issued within 3 months before the date of application.

⚫︎ English translation written in foreign languages other than English would be necessary.

⚫︎ Additional documents may be required during the examination of Immigration Office.

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