From the Immigration Bureau of Japan:
In accordance with the partial amendment of the Basic Resident Registration Act, foreign residents will be able to receive a Residence Record (住民票, juuminhyou). This will make administrative procedures at your local government simpler and more convenient.
In basic terms, current JETs need not do anything. All foreigners now currently residing in Japan should have already received a copy of their Residence Record in the mail. It may be helpful, however, to be familiar with the following vocabulary:
- 住民票 (juuminhyou): Residence Record
All foreign residence will now have a Residence Record instead of the previous Alien Registration Certificate (外国人登録証明書, gaikokujin touroku shoumeisho).
- 在留カード (zairyuu kaado): Resident Card
Current foreigner residents in possession of an Alien Registration Card need not do anything; the current Alien Registration Card will be treated as a Resident Card beginning 9 July 2012. Future foreign residents will receive a Resident Card upon/after arrival.
- 転入届 (tennyuu todoke): Moving-In Form
As with Japanese residents, all foreign residents must now complete a “moving-in form” when changing addresses in/into a municipality. This can be done at the city/town hall. Future foreign residents who do not receive their Resident Card at the airport upon arrival will receive it via registered mail after completing the “moving-in form.”
- 転出届 (tenshutsu todoke): Moving-Out Form
As with Japanese residents, all foreign residents must now complete a “moving-out form” when changing address in/out of a municipality (including when leaving Japan for good). This can be done at the city/town hall.
For a concise explanation of the new residency system, please refer to the following links and publications:
- New Residency Registration System Leaflet (English): A leaflet outlining the new Residency Registration System. It visually describes how current and future foreign residents in Japan are affected.
- Changes to the Basic Resident Registration Law: A website that describes in detail the major points to the amendment made to the Basic Resident Registration Law.
- Start of a New Residency Management System: The Immigration Bureau of Japan’s website providing flow charts and answers to frequently asked questions about the new system.