I went to the immigration office again today, to submit some more papers. A couple of days ago, the office called me in the morning, to ask about our move. I don’t know whether the ward office tells them automatically, or whether they had asked, but in any case, they had found out before I’d worked down the list of people I needed to tell. (Normally, you don’t need to tell immigration when you move, just the local authority. Obviously, things are different when you’re in the middle of a visa application, which is why they were on my list.) They confirmed that Yuriko and Mayuki were moving with me, because that really matters when applying for permanent residence on the grounds that you are married to a Japanese citizen. They also asked when Yuriko would get home, because she was at work at the time.
Then they called back in the evening, confirming that they’d sent the letter requesting the additional documents, and then asked to speak to Yuriko. As we were eating dinner, I just passed the phone across the table. This was, I suspect, a check on whether I was really living with her, as I said. They confirmed her name and date of birth, which is a fairly rough-and-ready test, but probably enough if you have no reason to be suspicious. There’s been a bit of fuss in the media recently over fake marriages for immigration purposes, so they may be tightening things up a bit.
The letter arrived yesterday, and they needed Yuriko and Mayuki’s JÅ«minhyÅ (official residence record), the official record of my alien registration, and a letter confirming my contact telephone number. Posting them was OK, but I prefer to go to immigration and hand them over, so I know they’ve actually made it. Of course, this meant going to immigration (which isn’t far), and then waiting more than an hour for something that took about thirty seconds. This is a very busy time at immigration, because the Japanese academic and financial years start in April, so a lot of people are renewing and changing their visas. I normally try to avoid going around now, but there wasn’t really any choice when they wrote to me.
Anyway, when I was talking to them on the phone, they said that it would take another two or three months for my application to be processed. That would make it about a year since I applied. The fact that they are still asking for information suggests that I’ve not been rejected yet, so maybe I’ll get permanent residence this time.