The Choice of Nationality

If you are a person of dual nationality,
please make the choice of nationality!

For further details, please make an inquiry to the nearest office of a city, ward, town or village or the nearest Legal Affairs Bureau (if you live in Japan) or to the embassy or the nearest consulate of Japan (if you live abroad).

A Japanese national having a foreign nationality (a person of dual nationality) shall choose either of the nationalities before he or she reaches twenty two years of age (or within two years after the day when he or she acquired the second nationality if he or she acquired such nationality after the day when he or she reached twenty years of age). If he or she fails to choose either of the nationalities, he or she may lose Japanese nationality. So, please don't forget the choice of nationality.

1. A person who has to make the choice of nationality

The examples of the cases where a person will be of dual nationality are as follows.

2. Methods of choice of nationality

Concerning the choice of nationality, please make the choice of your own free will by either of the following methods.

(1) In the case where you choose Japanese nationality...

I.The method of renouncing the foreign nationalitiy

In the case where you have renounced the foreign nationality in accordance with the laws of the foreign country concerned, you are required to submit a notification of loss of foreign nationality, which shall be accompanied by a document proving the loss of nationality, to the office of a city, ward, town or village (if you live in Japan) or to the embassy or the consulate of Japan (if you live abroad).

For further details of the procedure for renouncing the foreign nationality, please make an inquiry to the government office, the embassy or the consulate of the foreign country concerned.

II.The method of making a declaration to choose Japanese nationality

You are required to submit a notification of a declaration to choose Japanese nationality, in which you swear that you choose to be a Japanese national and that you renounce the foreign nationality, to the office of city, ward, town or village (if you live in Japan) or to the embassy or the consulate of Japan (if you live abroad).

(2) In the case where you choose the foreign nationality ...

I.The method of renouncing Japanese nationality

You are required to submit a notification of renouncing Japanese nationality, which shall be accompanied by a copy of the family-register, a document proving your domicile and a document proving that you possess the foreign nationality, to the Legal Affairs Bureau or the District Legal Affairs Bureau which has jurisdiction over your domicile (if you live in Japan) or to the embassy or the consulate of Japan (if you live abroad).

II.The method of choosing the foreign nationality

If you have chosen the foreign nationality in accordance with the laws of the foreign country concerned, you are required to submit a notification of loss of nationality, which shall be accompanied by a document proving that you have chosen the foreign nationality, to the office of a city, ward, town or village (if you live in Japan) or to the embassy or the consulate of Japan (if you live abroad).

3. The period within which the choice of nationality shall be made

The period within which the choice of nationality shall be made differs in accordance with the time when you have become of dual nationality. The prescribed period is as follows.

(1) A Japanese national who has become of dual nationality on or after January 1, 1985 (i.e. on or after the day when the Nationality Law, as amended by Law No. 45 of 1984, became effective).



(Note) If you fail to make the choice of nationality within the above-stated period, you may be required by the Minister of Justice to choose one of the nationalities you possess, and in some cases, you may lose your Japanese nationality.

(2) A Japanese national who has become of dual nationality before January 1, 1985 (i.e. before the day when the Nationality Law, as amended by Law No. 45 of 1984, became effective).



(Note) If you fail to make the choice of nationality within the above-stated period, you shall be deemed to have made a declaration in which you swear that you choose to be a Japanese national and that you renounce the foreign nationality, at the time of the expiration of such period.