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Director of Immigration Lawyer Office SAKURA International Legal Office
in Minami-aoyma, Tokyo.

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Skilled Labor VISA : for a foreign food cook, wine sommelier and etc.
<02/13 (Wed) /2008 23:20>
When a foreign national has a certain skill, he/she can apply for "Skilled Labor" VISA. If permitted, the period of status of residence is three years or one year. The Ministry of Justice has stipulated the following eight skilled labors.

Job TitleMajor Point of Skill Requirements
1. Foreign Food Cookat least 10 years' experience
2. Architectat least 10 years' experience  in architecture or civil engineering characteristic to a foreign country
3. Jewelerat least 10 years' experience
4. Animal Trainerat least 10 years' experience
5. Hot Spring Mining at least 10 years' experience
6. Aircraft Pilotat least 1,000 hours' experience
7. Sport Trainer1) at least 3 years' experience in instructing sport  or
2) a person who has competed in an international event such as the Olympics or World Championships
8. Wine Sommelierat least 5 years' experience and has achieved excellence in an international sommelier contest

In each case, there are two more requirements:

1) The foreign national has a contract with a public or private organization in Japan

2) The foreign national receives no less reward than a Japanese national would receive for comparable work

As for the details of the requirement and how to invite the above people from abroad, please see this page of our office Web site. How to invite a cook of foreign food is explained as an example.

To Japanese Blog


m-c-r, an artist place where we can feel at home, play with kids and appreciate arts
<02/10 (Sun) /2008 23:25>
They say that family life, work and art existed together and so did aged people, young people and children at a village in the old times.

They say that they have been separated. Family, workers and artists live independently in the suburbs, offices and museums. It is often said that they must be reintegrated like the old times. There are many of such trials as intercommunication between school kids and the local adults or decoration of an office with an art.

I heard of this kind of topic in my college, so it must have been over 20 years since it was first advocated. However, it must be true that I just happened to be conscious about this topic in my college, but people have been conscious about it for much longer time.

One of such reintegrating trials is South Aoyama Creators Residence (m-c-r) (in Japaense) which I visited today.

This place is in the same building of my office. I longed for going there. Luckily, I got to know SHAKE-san (meaning a salmon in Japanese), the owner and an artist of the place. Originally, it was an hour appointment, but our talk lasted five hours before my next appointment.

m-c-r rents artists its rooms for artistic representation by the week.

There are various names such as an artist, a painter, a ceramist and a jewelry designer. It may be common requirements for them that:

They have something in their mind that they want to represent,
they have skills to represent it,
they have places to represent it
and they have those who appreciate it.

"But there was no place for the representation," she said.

I said, “There are many art galleries.” She said there is a barrier to use them.

That’s why she has been creating m-c-r.

* To be continued.

To Japanese Blog

An immigration lawyer whom a secretary followed without pay
<02/07 (Thu) /2008 23:01>
Today I have lunch with an immigration lawyer whose blog is so elegant while he has so many clients that he has almost no time to sleep. He is younger than me, but one of my admirable immigration lawyers.

Great findings of today:

1) When he separated from a lawyer office to open his own office, a secretary followed him even though there was no guarantee that she could be paid. She started the office blog as a tool of ads, even more she found the current place for his office. (Probably your guess is wrong. She is not his wife, but married with another lawyer.) She is great, but he is also great in that she followed him without a guarantee. She could have stayed in the established lawyer office.

2) When he opened his office and could not find any client, he didn’t know how his wife was making both ends meet, or how they lived their lives with no income. That’s another great story. She must have had hard time. It could not happen that he just didn’t notice it. Definitely she didn’t let him find it. It's amazing.

3) During our lunch, he got two calls at his cellular phone. He spoke fluently in English for one call and in Chinese for another. I asked if he studied abroad. He answered, “No.” with smile. He just learned them while practicing his job. He did not even mention how hard it was, as if it had been no effort at all. In my case, I needed a lot of effort, studying in USA and teaching and discussing in English with people from all over the world before I think I can speak English to some extent. He is a person who seems to have nothing to do with effort. He must have made effort, I knew. We just can't sense it. That's a third great finding of today.

  We can’t do what we don’t imagine to be able to do.
  We can do what we thought we couldn’t do, when we see
  someone doing it.

  Thanks to the lunch with him today, I began to think that I want to
  and I will be able to speak both English and Chinese like him.

To Japanese Blog

"YONONAKA"-KA (Real Life Class)" at Wada Junior High School
<02/06 (Wed) /2008 23:55>
Have you ever heard of Wada Junior High School? Recently, there has been a lot of news that a JUKU (=a private prep school) SAPIX has night classes in a public junior high school. This is that junior high school.

YONONAKA-KA ; YONONAKA means “society” and KA means “class.” As a whole, I think it is a class on real life, or how to acquire skills to survive real life. The class is held by Mr. FUJIWARA KAZUHIRO, a public-sector-experienced principal. Any adult can participate in the class as long as they satisfy the following conditions:
     1) Read FUJIWARA’s new book “A New Morality”
          “ATARASHI I DOUTOKU” is the original title in Japanese.
     2) Read YONONAKA-KA network website (in Japanese)
     3) Doing education-related activity

Today, the participants are members of a city council, college students who plan to be teachers and parents who have kids.

The theme of February 6, 2008 was “A training for an interview.” The interview for high school entrance exams was targeted.

I joined a group of junior high school students. As a student with my partner, I practiced greeting to the people who we met for the first time, telling a junior high school memories as a story.

I was so nervous. Definitely more nervous than to do this with an adult. But the student are used to adult joining the class, so I just trusted them and let them lead me.

One of the practices is an unexpected question “what color do you use to describe yourself?” It’s important to answer promptly to that kind of unexpected question with some good reason. The interviewer wants to see how promptly and how reasonably you answer the question.

I had this practice with two of the students. Which of the following is mine?

a) It’s golden-color, but a part of me is black. Because golden-color is outstanding. But I know I have some negative part in my mind.

b) It’s orange-color. Actually, it might be blue, but orange-color can encourage other people.

c) It’s red. Actual color of me is darker color. But the good effect from my friend X makes me think red is better for me.


It may be clear enough to tell my answer is B. I didn’t expect golden-color. That’s why he picked up that color. And three of us mentioned real color of our mind (or part of our mind) with the ideal color of the mind. It’s common among fourteen-year-old students and me at the age of over forty.

Probably you won’t think I am too childish. Those students are thoughtful, understand themselves and positive.

This kind of communication can be done promptly for fourteen-year-old students and their first-met over-40-year-old adult. Do you take it for granted or as the achievement of Wada Junior High School?

By the way, I knew their names. We introduced one another. But on the net, let me make them anonymous.

The principal FUJIWARA-SENSEI was too busy to talk with the participants. But we had a lot of fruitful talks after the class. Everyone said, “I’m so glad to be here today. I wish I had joined this kind of class in my junior high school.” I agree. If this is a company seminar, it can cost twenty thousand yen per person. Today it’s free for adults.

Also, I had a chance to have in-depth talks with a film director who has video-recorded the FUJIWARA-SENSEI’s activities and this school over the last five years.

What I was so pleased is the director videoed me because she really wanted to talk with me. I asked, “why me?” And she answered, “I felt energy from you.”

Those who know me don’t think I am so energetic. I asked, “From where do you sense that energy?” She answered, “I can’t sense any tension from you or you looked so relaxed.” She continued, “People usually get nervous to practice with students just because they are kids. You didn’t look like that.” I understood and appreciated her words.

On second thought, my tension vanished the moment I talked with one of the students, thanks to him. It took no time to build a mutual trust between us. It is not my one-way effort, but two-way cooperation. That’s one of the achievements of YONONAKA-KA. It will definitely be an asset for them to have such skill to build a mutual trust with a first-met person.

I talked with the film director about very important topics; let me write about it some time.

* Summary

It is meaningful to teach junior high school students about what adults learn in the company.

It is meaningful for adults to return to school for studying in the position of children’s.

We can meet people who participated in such place.

A lesson : It is possible to sense energy from a person who's relaxed.

It's amazing to have an ability to sense it.

To Japanese Blog

Shinoda-san, Chairman & CEO of Headwaters Co., Ltd. (Part 2)
<02/05 (Tue) /2008 23:50>
This entry is continued from this one.

* Sense of Impatience

Just by reading the Chairman Blog (in Japanese), we will be inspired every time. I asked why he could write such inspiring messages. He said, “It’s a sense of impatience.” Even though he is a chairman leading such a successful company, he still thinks his capability is the worst in the company. That sense of impatience, or frustration made him a man like him. That sense of impatience will create the messages of his blog. That’s what he answered.

Now, let me quote the related message from his blog. Also, let me put a photo copied from his blog, exactly to the same place as in his blog. As you can see, a photo of so-happy-looking people is put beside his passionate message. It’s somewhat imbalanced. However, at the same time, it proves the company is in good balance; not only passionate but cheerful and happy. Or more exactly, that passion lets them look so happy, filled with something worth working.

“Impatience” (Translation of the original in Japanese posted at 12:41 on Dec. 28, 2007)

I’m always driven by a sense of impatience.

The sense of impatience that I must propel our business by bridging the gap between ideal and reality. The sense of impatience that I blame myself for the immaturity of my performance. The sense of impatience that I must perfect current members of our company as businesspersons.

I have such sense of impatience that makes me feel shivered, but that shivering feeling is actually a good one. This is the supreme moment for the top management. This makes me feel that I’m living and going.

Those who have influence on many people in the society and pursue something as a dreamer by getting many people involved must take good deal of responsibilities. Those who can sense such responsibilities could not escape from this sense of impatience any time in their lifetime.

HWS photoOf course, I have an ambition. But I already lost any of such ambition that I want to be happy or rich. They can be reached automatically only if I use some part of my ability, without hassle. My true ambition is to realize the idea that our company HWS has been advocating and to make billions of people all over the world happy, including HWS members. This is nothing but a work of an artist. To form the shape of HWS’s idea in the real world is my true ambition. Wealth and fame will follow it. There is no need to pursue wealth and fame.

The heat of the ambition and the coldness of the sense of impatience which an ambitious person must embrace are driving force for me. I will live through my life at a top speed next year as I have done this year. I hope and I’m sure to meet many of my partners who can go with me at that top speed.

* To be continued.

To Japanese Blog

A useful site to look into the meaning of a foreigner's name
<02/04 (Mon) /2008 23:41>
When I get contact from a foreign national whose name I have never heard of, I can check the following website to know the meaning of the name:


This site is mainly for English name, but some of the other country’s name can be searched.

Of course, I would not say to my client, “I know the meaning of your name is...” However, it is interesting to know the meaning of a name. Also, it’s important to know the meaning which their parent gave to the name.

As a try, when we search the above site for “Mike,” it turns out the nickname of Michael. Then, the search result of “Michael” is as follows:

Its meaning is "who resembles God". Biblical: Michael is the archangel (chief or principal angel) who defeats the dragon. He and Gabriel are the only two angels given personal names in the canonical Bible. (quote from a serach result)

It’s a good finding to me.

Also, the search result shows the trend of the popularity of a searched name. Mike’s trend is as follows:

Trend of Mike

Mike’s popularity ranked almost near the best 1 around 60's, but recently ranked around 600. I could not find the actual number of the name on that site. And there is a trend graph of Mike and its related names. Michael has kept its high ranking. I did not know it. Indeed, there are some celebrities such as Michael Jackson or Michael Jordan.

And I found that Misha is also a nickname of Michael, thanks to the search result of Mike. It’s a Russian origin name. I knew it’s a Russian origin, but did not know it’s another nickname of Michael.

A Japanese singer “Misia” has a similar pronunciation, but a different spelling. I could not find “Misia” on the above site. By the way, there seem several theories about the origin of Misia. You could find several sites on that theme, by searching for “misia YURAI (a Japanese word meaning “origin.”)

By the way, the Kanji, pronunciation and meaning of my name are as follows:

Meaning of my name

I'm thankful for this name.

To Japanese Blog

Japanese-American, Japanese-Brazilian, etc. (Part 2)
<02/03 (Sun) /2008 22:17>
Previously, I explained Long Term Resident VISA for 2nd generation of Japanese who’s born after their Japanese parent renounced (=lost) Japanese nationality as well as 3rd and 4th generation. I heard Japanese emigrants to Brazil needed to acquire Brazilian nationality in order to buy real estate in Brazil. As a result, there must be a case a child was born after his/her Japanese parent renounced Japanese nationality.

This time, let me explain the case that their parent holds Japanese nationality or the case that a child was born before his/her Japanese parent renounced Japanese nationality.

It may be natural that a biological child of a Japanese acquires Japanese nationality, but it can happen that he/she loses Japanese nationality when they are born in a foreign country.

Generally, nationality is acquired by a child's place of birth (jus soli) or bloodline (jus sanguinis). “Jus soli” means “right of soil” in Latin and “jus sanguinis” does “right of blood.” You could listen to their pronunciation for “jus soli” and “jus sanguinis.”

Japanese nationality is granted on the grounds of jus sanguinis while U.S. or Brazilian citizenship is granted on the grounds of jus soli.

Therefore, when a child of a Japanese parent is born in the USA or Brazil, he/she acquires dual nationality : Japanese nationality and U.S./Brazil citizenship.

In this case, the child shall lose Japanese nationality unless the Japanese parent makes a notification to reserve Japanese nationality at a Japanese embassy or a Japanese consulate within three months of his/her birth.

But, even though the child lost Japanese nationality, he/she under twenty years of age may (meaning “can”) reacquire Japanese nationality if they are living in Japan.

The following family tree illustrates “Long Term Resident VISA” when a child of a Japanese lost Japanese nationality. And the case No.1 is that his/her parent still holds Japanese nationality; the case No. 2 is that the child was born before the parent renounced (lost) Japanese nationality.

Long Term Resident Family Tree 2

Even though the 2nd generation lost Japanese nationality, it does not change the fact that he/she was born as a child of a Japanese. So they can apply for child VISA, or more exactly the status of residence “Spouse or Child of Japanese National.”

As a result, the spouse of the 2nd generation can apply for “Long Term Resident” VISA without good conduct requirement.

It may be easier to understand to see the previous family tree to compare with the above illustration.

Related Link : Long Term Resident

To Japanese Blog

Export FC2 Blog to Ameblo
<02/02 (Sat) /2008 22:29>
"My Office Blog" at FC2 started from Jan. 20th 2008, then it started at Ameblo from Jan. 27th. Although both blog services have plus sides and minus sides respectively, from now on Japanese blog is written on Ameblo only. FC2 blog remains as it is, but the old entries will be copied to ameblo now.

Old FC2 Blog in Japanese : http://skrlegal.blog35.fc2.com/
New Ameblo Blog in Japanese: http://ameblo.jp/skr-legal/

This English Blog stays in FC2 because it is easier to customize html. Even “SEND” button for comment can be translated into English, while I don’t know how to do it at Ameblo.

FC2 Blog in English http://skrlegale.blog51.fc2.com/

To Japanese Blog

Shinoda-san, Chairman & CEO of Headwaters Co., Ltd.
<02/01 (Fri) /2008 23:40>
One of the directors of OKWave Corp., Sugiura-san kindly introduced me to Shinoda-san, Chairman & CEO of Headwaters Co., Ltd . Sugiura-san and I went to his company to have the meeting with him.

* About the company name

First of all, do you know the meaning of “headwaters?” I didn’t know it. Now, let me quote from the CEO’s message (in Japanese) :
Headwaters mean “the origin of a river or the uppermost point.”

This name of our company has been named to declare that we Headwaters Co., Ltd. begin as a drip of water, gather our force as a huge raging torrent, or raging current of mass water then prevail in IT industry to make a revolution in IT industry.

Also the company name demonstrates our stance to be key persons to take the responsibility for starting new businesses at the uppermost point.

It is often said that system development stages are like the flow of a river from the upper reaches to the lower reaches. The upper stage is business analysis while middle and lower stages are program design and development. Usually, system engineers start their career as programmers up to business analysts to provide their client with higher values. That’s why the term “upper stage” means high values and one of the goals to system engineers.

Even more, “headwaters” are the uppermost stage on top of the upper stage. What a wonderful name! “Headwaters” remind system engineers of the highest goal they should reach. At the same time, the company name directly links to the company stance that it “begins as a drip of water, gathers our force as a huge raging torrent” to revolutionize IT industry.

Shinoda-san himself named this one. At first, he came up with an idea “the origin of a river," or GEN-RYU in Japanese. When he looked into a dictionary, he found “headwaters.” It is not unnecessarily outstanding, but natural and simple. By instinct, he found it must be a good name. It is not just luck, but the result of his thinking over what is the essence of the company. His resolution has been crystallized into the name. It is such a wonderful name that people cannot find so easily.

Indeed, the above quote may make you feel it is too fictitious and not so realistic. But I realized that it can be happening for Shinoda-san after reading his blog. It is not only me who think in that way. Please take a try to read his “Chairman Blog” (in Japanese.)

* About Chairman Blog

When I first heard about conditions to be top management, I found them somewhat too technical. It seems not management itself but something else that attracts me to follow Shinoda-san.

Then, he said, “I am 40% top management and 60% an educator.” That clicks to me. I heard that Matsushita Kounosuke, the founder of Matsushita Corp. said that what his company is manufacturing is not a product but a person. After all, such technical part as making business model, establishing an organization or making profit is not enough for me to decide following one person.

It is a compassion to others and passion to educate them that attract people. Without them, no matter what management techniques and what business talent he/she has, I don’t want to share or invest my precious time for such top management.

* To be continued to this entry.

To Japanese Blog

I carefully pay attention to the correctness of this blog.
However, I do not guarantee the result of your own deed referring to this blog.
For proper application, I am pleased if you consult with our office.

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