I’m Takashi Akeyama, a representative of the Niseko VISA & Immigration Support Centre. As the only administrative office in Hokkaido specializing in VISA & Immigration and tourism, we help foreigners living in Hokkaido, mainly in Niseko, Otaru and Sapporo areas, to apply new or extend VISA, to change the status, such as working visas and spouse visas etc…. In this article, I will explain if international students leave school, can they obtain working visa,.
3 important points that international students who leave school can get working visa.
The following three points are important in checking whether an international student who has left school can obtain a working visa.
① Do they already have an educational background of junior college, university or higher education other than the school you left?
② Is there a reasonable reason to leave school and work? In other words, can you answer the question, “Why are you working?”
③ When the status of residence is good and there are no legal problems.
If you can clear these three points, you will be able to get a working visa.
Before coming to Japan, international students have various educational and career backgrounds in their home countries. Even if you leave school while studying in Japan, you will be considered to have the educational background required to apply for a working visa, especially “Engineer/Specialist in Humanities/International Services(技術・人文知識・国際業務).
1) If you graduated from a junior college, university, or graduate school in your home country before coming to Japan
2） If you have graduated from a vocational school, junior college, university, or graduate school in Japan after coming to Japan
In other words, even if you have left the school, you are currently enrolled in, if you already have an educational background of at least a university, junior college, or Japanese vocational school, you meet the educational background requirement of “Engineer/Specialist in Humanities/International Services”.
On the contrary, if you leave school, you cannot fulfill the education requirement if,
1） If you came to Japan after graduating from high school or vocational school in your home country
(2) If you came to Japan after graduating from high school or vocational school in your home country, but have only completed Japanese language school in Japan
In this case, the last educational background is high school or vocational school in the home country. It is also important to note that a Japanese language school is not considered a vocational school, and therefore does not meet the education requirement for the “Engineer/Specialist in Humanities/International Services”.
Reasons for Leaving School
Students who come to Japan with a student visa are issued a visa for the purpose of attending school and studying. Nevertheless, why do they need to leave school and work in the middle of their studies? You need to explain a reasonable reason that everyone can understand. For example, if you have already graduated from a university in your home country and have been scouted by a company related to your field of specialty. If you have a positive reason to find a job, it is assumed that it will be relatively easy to obtain permission.
On the other hand, if an international student leaves school as a result of reasons or circumstances created by the student himself/herself, it may be difficult to obtain permission to change the working visa. For example, the most common case is when a student is unable to continue on to the next level due to bad grades or lack of attendance, making it impossible to extend the student visa and forcing the student to leave the school. In this case, you will be asked to explain why you had poor attendance or poor grades. You will be explaining your class attendance. If your attendance is low (less than 80%), then you will need to explain, “What did you do instead of going to school?”
Is the status of residence good and legally acceptable?
In some cases, a change of status to a working visa, which is inappropriate for the period of stay on a student visa, may not be approved. The most typical example is when the reason for leaving school and having to work is “failure to advance to the next grade level due to poor grades or poor attendance,” and the student visa cannot be renewed. The cause of these poor grades and attendance was working many part-time jobs, and the problem is overwork (illegal work). International students are allowed to work part-time up to 28 hours per week if they obtain a Permit to Engage in Activity other than that Permitted under the Status of Residence. Some students work part-time over 28 hours per week by working two or three part-time jobs.When this happens, they are physically unable to go to school, which can lead to leaving the school due to poor attendance or grades.
As described above, depending on the reasons for Leaving School, there are cases in which illegal employment may be discovered, so the Immigration Office examiners tend to be more strict in examining applications for work visas after leaving school. In order to obtain a working visa after leaving school, it is necessary to clearly prove that you have a reasonable reason for leaving school to find a job and that your current status of residence is good and that you are not illegally or illegally working, by submitting the application documents and additional supporting documents.
The Niseko VISA & Immigration Support Centre help and support foreign nationals who are trying to overcome language, cultural and custom barriers and live as a member of Japanese society. If you have any questions or enquiries about this article, or getting working visa, please feel free to contact us by phone or via the ‘Free Consultation Form’ on our website.