The Only Essential Guide You Need For Family Visa Japan

Written by

Mynaz Altaf

Fact check by

Afreen Abbasi

Updated on

Jul 25,2024

alt image

Planning your Canada PR
Free last minute checklist

The Only Essential Guide You Need For Family Visa Japan

You and your family have been dreaming of experiencing Japan together. The food, the culture, the natural beauty - it all calls to you. But how do you make that dream a reality? Getting the right visas can seem daunting. Rules and requirements feel never-ending. But don't worry! This complete guide breaks down everything you need about family visa Japan. You'll learn about eligibility, documents required, how to apply, and tips to make the process as smooth as possible. With this guide, your family will be stamped and ready for an unforgettable adventure in no time. The land of the rising sun awaits - so let's get you there.

Overview of Family Visas for Japan

To bring your family members to live with you in Japan, you will need to apply for the proper type of family visa. The specific visa you need depends on your relationship with the family member. Japan offers visas for spouses, children, parents, and, in some cases, siblings or common-law partners.

1. Spouse Visa

If you want to bring your husband, wife, or partner to live with you in Japan, you will need to apply for a Spouse Visa or Dependent Visa. To qualify, you must be a Japanese citizen or have permanent residence status in Japan. You must prove your relationship by providing documents like a marriage or family registration certificate. Your spouse must also meet certain age, finances, and health insurance eligibility criteria.

2. Child Visa

For unmarried children under 20, you can apply for a Child Visa or Dependent Visa. The requirements are similar to a Spouse Visa, needing documents proving the parent-child relationship and meeting financial/insurance family visa Japan requirements. Children over 20 may still be eligible if they are full-time students.

3. Parent Visa

To bring your parents or parents-in-law to Japan, you can apply for a Parent Visa. Again, you must be a citizen or permanent resident to sponsor your parents. You will need to prove the relationship and commit to being their financial sponsor, providing housing, and covering their living expenses in Japan. Health insurance must also be obtained for the parents.

4. Long-Term Refugees Visa

  • Available for descendants of Japanese nationals, refugees, and individuals divorced from Japanese nationals.

  • Provides a long-term stay option for individuals with unique family backgrounds.

Child or Spouse of Japanese Nationals

Children and spouses of Japanese nationals

Child or Spouse of the Permanent Residents

Children or spouses of permanent residents

Permanent Residents

people who have stayed under some conditions regarding tax payment, income in Japan

Long term refugees

Descendants of Japanese nationals, refugees, individuals divorced from nationals of Japan


5. Other Family Visas

In some circumstances, a family visa in Japan may be available for other dependent family members like siblings, grandparents, or common-law partners. Family visa requirements in Japan tend to be stricter for these relationships, and additional proof of financial dependence or medical need may be required. Check with immigration authorities to determine if a visa is possible for your specific situation.

Read More: Application Process for Japan Work Visa for Indians

Spouse Visa Requirements and Process

To apply for a spouse visa (or dependent visa) for Japan, you and your spouse must gather some required documents to prove your relationship and eligibility.

  • Marriage certificate showing that you are legally married

  • Divorce certificates or death certificates for any former spouses

  • Proof of your spouse's income or financial support for at least the last 3 years:

    • Tax records

    • Pay stubs

    • Bank statements

    • Pension records

  • If someone else is sponsoring you, a signed letter from them promising financial support during your stay

  • A rental agreement or documents showing you own the accommodation in Japan

  • If staying with friends or family, a housing guarantee letter from them

  • Passports

  • ID photos

  • Completed visa application form for Japan

Additional Documents

Finally, standard documents like passports, ID photos, and a visa application form are required. The specific forms needed depend on your country of origin, so check with the Japanese embassy or consulate in your area.

Once you have all the necessary documents, you can submit your family visa Japan application through the proper channels, typically by mail or in person at your nearest Japanese diplomatic mission. The review process usually takes 7 to 30 days, sometimes longer for more complex cases. If approved, you will receive a spouse visa allowing you to live and work legally in Japan for the duration of your spouse’s resident status, typically 1 to 5 years. The family visa Japan can be renewed as long as you meet the eligibility criteria.

Child Visa Requirements and Process

To bring children under the age of 16 into Japan, you will need to apply for a child visa for each child. The requirements for a family visa in Japan and the application process are relatively straightforward.

Documents Needed

For a child visa, you will need:

  • The child's passport

  • A photo of the child (2 inches by 2 inches, front-facing, no glasses)

  • A letter of financial support to prove you can support the child during their stay

  • Proof of relationship to the child (birth certificate)

Entering Japan

When entering Japan, the child must go through normal immigration procedures. Be prepared to show immigration officers the child's family visa Japan and proof of relationship. Children under 16 can enter Japan for up to 90 days for tourism and short-term stays. Additional permits may be required for longer stays or if the child will attend school in Japan.

Documents Needed for Family Visas

Each family member must provide certain documentation to apply for a family visa to accompany you to Japan. The documents will depend on your relationship with the family member, so make sure you understand exactly what is needed for your situation.

1. For a Spouse Visa

If you want to bring your spouse to Japan on a family visa Japan, you will need to provide the following:

  • A copy of your marriage certificate. This must be an official document from your home country to prove your legal marriage.

  • A letter stating your spouse’s intent to live with you in Japan. This letter should be signed and dated by your spouse.

  • Proof of financial support. You must provide documents showing your ability to financially support your spouse in Japan, such as employment records, tax returns, bank statements, etc.

2. For a Child Visa

To obtain a family visa Japan for your dependent children to join you in Japan, you will need to submit:

  • Your child’s birth certificate to prove your relationship. Make sure you have an official copy.

  • A letter of consent from the non-accompanying parent. If your child’s other parent is not joining you in Japan, you will need their written consent for your child to live with you in Japan. This letter must be signed, dated, and notarized.

  • Proof of financial support. Similar to a spousal visa, you must show documents proving you can financially support your child in Japan.

  • School enrollment (if applicable). If your child attends school in Japan, you may need to provide proof of enrollment. Check with the specific school for their requirements.

  • Custody orders (if applicable). If there are any custody orders regarding your child, provide an official copy of the court orders.

3. For Other Family Members

The specific documents needed for other family members, such as parents, siblings, grandparents, etc., will depend on the nature of the relationship and the purpose of their stay in Japan. Check with immigration officials to determine exactly what is required for your family’s specific situation. Providing clear and comprehensive documentation will help ensure the family visa application process in Japan goes as smoothly as possible.

Japan Family Visa Processing Time

Once you’ve gathered the required documents for your family’s visas, you must apply through the proper channels. The Japan family visa processing time for family-related visas, known as family stays or spouse visas, can vary depending on factors like your nationality, type of visa, and time of year. 

Processing Stage


Application Submission

Typically, 1 to 2 weeks

Initial Review

Around 1 month

Additional Documentation Request (if any)

usually 1 to 4 weeks

Final Decision Approximately

2 to 3 months

Visa Issuance After approval

within 1 to 2 weeks

Total Processing Time

Approximately 3 to 6 months


  • After submitting your application, immigration officials will review all the paperwork to verify the relationship between family members and ensure the correct documents have been provided. Background checks are also typically performed during this stage. If any additional information is needed, the immigration office will contact the applicant.

  • The busiest times for visa applications are just before major holidays like Golden Week in May and the summer vacation season from July to August. Applying during the off-season or shoulder months of April, June, September, and October may speed up Japan's family visa processing time. Once approved, the immigration office will notify you and schedule an interview where documents are verified in person.

  • For spouse visas, in particular, the immigration official will interview both partners together to confirm the authenticity of the marriage or relationship. Providing ample evidence like wedding photos, proof of joint finances or insurance, and affidavits from friends and family about the relationship can help expedite the review process.

The initial family visa is typically valid for 1 to 5 years, depending on nationality, purpose of stay, and relationship. Renewal can be done from within Japan to continue your family’s extended stay.

Japan Family Visa Cost in 2024

If you plan to bring your family to Japan, you must obtain the correct visas for each family member. Family visas, known as "dependent visas," allow family members of someone with a working or long-term visa to stay in Japan for the same duration. The fees for family visas include an application fee and, in some cases, a Certificate of Eligibility (COE) fee.


Cost (¥)

Application Fee per person


Certificate of Eligibility (COE) (if applicable) per person


Total (without COE)


Total (with COE)



While the fees are not exorbitant, the application process for a family visa in Japan can be complicated, so make sure to give yourself plenty of time to gather the necessary documents for each family member to avoid stress or errors. 

Read More: Japan Immigration Made Easy: Everything You Should Know


Key Takeaways

So there you have it, the complete guide to getting a family visa Japan. With the right partner like TerraTern by your side, the process doesn't have to be overly difficult or intimidating. Just make sure you check all the boxes and submit a strong application. At the end of it all, you'll be on your way to an amazing life in Japan with your loved ones. The Land of the Rising Sun awaits, ready to give you and your family memories to last a lifetime. Get ready for an unforgettable adventure!

Get all the details on Australia PR with this visa checklist

Why Trust TerraTern

At TerraTern, we adhere to a stringent editorial policy emphasizing factual accuracy, impartiality and relevance. Our content, curated by experienced industry professionals. A team of experienced editors reviews this content to ensure it meets the highest standards in reporting and publishing.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible for a dependent visa in Japan?

The spouse and children of the student qualify for the Dependent Visa. Obtain it by applying at a Japanese embassy or consulate, taking 2-3 months for processing.

Can I bring my family to Japan with a work visa?

Family members of employed foreigners in Japan receive "Dependent" residence status, allowing them to participate in typical activities for dependents of working foreign nationals.

Can I move to Japan with my family?

Expats aspiring to settle in Japan long-term must obtain a specific visa, categorized for work, study, or family reunification, based on their purpose for residing in the country.

Can I marry in Japan with a tourist visa?

Marriage in Japan doesn't require a long-term status. Tourists can marry by submitting a marriage registration (konin todoke) and supporting documents at the local municipal office.

Is there a minimum income requirement for a family visa sponsor?

Yes, to sponsor family members for family visa Japan, you must meet a minimum income requirement to prove you can financially support them in Japan. The specific amount depends on the size of your family but is usually around ¥250,000 to ¥350,000 per month for a typical family. You will need to provide documents like tax returns, bank statements, and payslips as evidence of your income.

Can my family members work in Japan with a family visa?

Family visa holders are allowed to work part-time for up to 28 hours per week. However, they cannot engage in permanent full-time work. Their residence status is still “Family Stay” so their main purpose for being in Japan must be to accompany you. If family members wish to work full-time, they will need to change their residence status to a proper work visa.