The Immigration Bureau guideline linking social insurance to visa renewal -- Guideline No. 8 -- has been officially deleted as of Wednesday. The newly revised guidelines (showing seven instead of the present eight) are now posted on the Ministry of Justice's website, according to a statement by Ronald Kessler, chairman of the Free Choice Foundation, an organization set up by members of the foreign community.
While the Immigration Bureau will continue to require non-permanent residents to present an insurance card at the visa application window, not doing so will cause no negative effect whatsoever upon an individual's visa renewal. (The guideline never applied to permanent residents; as previously, they are not required to present an insurance card at all.)
Although Immigration will encourage enrollment in Japan's social system by distributing brochures, individual offices and officers are "forbidden" to pressure anyone to join. In fact, the new guidelines state clearly that "enrollment in the social system will in no way be tied to visa renewal." Additionally, the Ministry of Justice will set up a new hotline to field complaints from visa applicants who feel that they were in any way pressured or coerced to enroll.
For further information please visit the Free Choice website at http://www.freechoice.jp/
To download the new guidelines, visit http://www.moj.go.jp/NYUKAN/nyukan70.pdf© Japan Today