Q_iconAs I will be managing a company I incorporated in Japan, I plan to submit an application to change my visa to a Business Manager visa to the Immigration Bureau. I have signed a special agreement with my lessor to allow me to use the space I am leasing as a “office”, although the principal contract states that it is for “residential use”. Will my application be approved?

A_dark_iconIt is possible for your visa change application to be denied. In principle, a “residence and office” is not accepted. In the case above, there needs to be proof that the leased space is being used exclusively as an “office”, rather than a “residence and office”.

★ Explanation ★

information-on-stockholderWith the exception of the more affluent foreign nationals, it is common for foreign nationals establishing their business in Japan to rent an office space. In such cases, one should take special care when it comes to the execution of the lease contract.

First, when it comes to a property lease contract, it is necessary to clarify that the purpose of the space leased is a for a business purpose such as for commercial use, such as a store or office. As for the lessee, it is necessary to clearly indicate that the space is being leased by a Japanese corporation, etc. and it is being used by a Japanese corporation.

If a part of a rented residential space will be used as an office, the following criteria must be met:

1. For the property lessor:

a. The property lessor must permit use of the leased space outside residential use; that is, the lessor must agree to a subletting between the lessee and the Japanese corporation that will use the space for its business

2. For the property lessee:

a. The property lessee must permit the Japanese corporation to use the leased space for business purposes

3. Other criteria

a. The space to be occupied by the Japanese corporation for business purposes must be equipped with the necessary facilities to conduct business

b. There is a clear arrangement on how utility fees are divided between the lessees

c. There is signage indicating the presence of the Japanese corporation