Extension of period of validity for Certificates of Eligibility (in relation to COVID-19)

The Government of Japan has announced that due to the impact of the current COVID-19 outbreak, a decision has been made to temporarily extend the period of validity of Certificates of Eligibility (COE), which are used in some visa applications.

COEs are normally valid for 3 months from the date of issue, but under these new temporary measures will instead be treated as valid for varying additional periods, as explained below.

The extension is available only in cases where the Certificate of Eligibility was issued on or after 1st January 2020.
If an applicant intends to use a COE which is beyond 3 months from the date of issue for a visa application, they must submit a letter from their inviting organisation etc. in Japan (e.g. employer or university) stating that they are still willing to accept the applicant for the purposes stated in the application for the COE.

Please note that even with the extension of the period of validity of the COE, a valid visa is still required. If an applicant has been granted a visa using their COE, but has not been able to enter Japan before the expiry date of the visa due to the COVID-19 outbreak and meets the conditions above, they may re-use their COE to apply for a new visa.

For further information, please visit the website of the Immigration Services Agency.
Japanese: http://www.moj.go.jp/isa/content/930005022.pdf
English: https://www.moj.go.jp/isa/content/930005023.pdf