Friday, February 27, 2015

Corporate seals in Japan

In Japan, a seal (stamp) is commonly used on a document to show that it is understood and made in an authentic way. As for the corporate seal, we usually make three types of seals such as:

- Representative seal
- Bank seal
- Kaku-in (square seal)

A representative seal is registered at the Legal Affairs Bureau (Houmu Kyoku) and therefore, you can obtain the certificate of seal impression which is used at important transactions (opening a bank account, executing a contract of a big deal, company/property registration, etc.). Each representative can register his/her representative seal at the Legal Affairs Bureau.

A bank seal is registered at banks and is used for bank transactions.

A Kaku-in is a square seal used rather informally than the other two. It is placed on invoices, or decoratively placed together with the representative seal on contracts.

You can use one seal for all three purposes to save cost.

Keep your seals in a secure place. A person who has the seal (and some other information) can withdraw your fund from your bank account, and change the registration of your company before you know it.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Resident representative requirement for the company registration (follow-up)

In my previous blog entry, the news article I mentioned seemed to be hastily posted. There has been no follow-up report from the newspaper company. However, it is certain that the Ministry of Justice is still studying the way how they can react on this issue of modifying the rule of resident representative when registering a company/branch.

On the other hand, there is a progress on Business Manger visa. Nikkei Newspaper reported that, starting from coming April, the Government will start a new type of Business Manger visa that is valid for four months. Currently, there are Business Manager visa for longer term (1/3/5 years) but it is difficult to obtain such a visa for a regular investor. 4-months Business Manager visa has less requirements.

Currently, foreign nationals/companies wishing to come to Japan and incorporate a company has to have a resident representative and office address beforehand. These are heavy burden for common investors.

With the 4-months Business Manager visa, you can come to Japan without having resident representative and office address.  After entering Japan, you can take up your abode, register you as a foreign resident, and complete the incorporation processes. If these processes are done withing the time limit of four months, you will be able to renew the Business Manager visa with longer period of validity.

In short, even if the requirement of resident representative remains, foreign nationals/companies with enough fund to travel to Japan and rent a residence can obtain the 4-months Business Manager visa and start preparation of incorporation/branch registration in Japan.