When a foreigner arrives in Japan with a long-term visa, a residence card can be issued at the airport. The card is linked to the type of visa that the foreigner holds and specifically lists the scope of the visa and type of work that the foreigner may engage in legally (for example “Specialist in Humanities/International Services” or “Professor”).
Foreigners living in Japan have a legal obligation to carry their residence card or passport with them at all times. Residence cards will usually be required for a foreigner to apply for a cell phone, open a bank account or find an apartment. Failure to carry your residence card can result in a fine of up to 200,000.
When a foreign national leaves Japan with the intent to come back, they are allowed to keep their residence card during their trip overseas. However, the residence card needs to be returned when the foreign national decides to stop living in Japan. Usually the residence card will be taken by the customs agent upon the foreign national’s departure from a Japanese airport.
The Hague Convention on International Child Abduction is the main international treaty targeted at the problem of children being removed from their home country by one parent without the other parent’s permission. The main goal of the Hague Convention is to return things to the way they were before the wrongful abduction. Therefore, courts hearing cases arising under the Hague Convention should not consider the best interests of the child. Rather, ideally the court should only be considering whether removal of the child was wrongful.