| Sep 12, 2006

How can I get a mortgage in Japan?

F. wants to know if there are any banks that will give home ownership loans to foreigners who do not have permanent residence status. F. is very frustrated since he has a salary that would allow him to cover monthly payments, but feels like ...

| Aug 15, 2006

Must I pay to renew my lease?

Summer is a wonderful time to enjoy Japan. The mountains, the ocean, the beautiful “inaka” or countryside where time seems to have stopped. It’s a good time also to thank God for the simple things that make life in Japan so special — telephones ...

| Jul 25, 2006

Renting and dual nationality

In Japan, “truth” is often a very nebulous concept. A “situational ethics” approach to life here directly affects law and gives birth to the “don’t ask, don’t tell” attitude, which is pervasive in Japan. I remember years ago when my mother found out that ...

| Jul 11, 2006

Food and citizenship concerns

Dual citizenship Joe is looking for further clarification on the dual citizenship issue raised in the June 27 Lifelines column. “I am a U.S. citizen,” he says, “married to Japanese. We have no kids as yet. My job has me traveling extensively, and my ...

| Jun 27, 2006

On dual citizenship, pensions

Dual citizenship Reader S. doesn’t recall ever reading anything in the Lifelines column on dual citizenship. Several decades ago, about the time his wife became a naturalized U.S. citizen, he asked and was told that Japan did recognize dual citizenship. Later, in the 1980s ...

| Jun 13, 2006

Pensions, credit and new law

Missing pension Reader X began working for a company here eight years ago, at which time his employers failed to inform him of his right to enroll in the Employees’ Pension and Health Insurance Programs. Under this system, employee and employer pay half the ...

| May 30, 2006

'Gokiburi,' new law and residency

Cockroaches One of our readers has been having problems with cockroaches recently. She has been cleaning the apartment regularly, placing cockroach traps and even used a “bomb” to try and get rid of them, all to no avail. She’d like to know if it’s ...

| May 16, 2006

Airports, pensions, cell phones

Immigration change I am reading a lot about the new immigration laws and the possible changes that could apply in regards to airport arrival/re-entry. I have a question. My kids both have Japanese passports. However, being 2 1/2 and six months, of course they ...

| Apr 4, 2006

Permanent residency and names

Permanent residency Having been granted permanent residency a couple of years ago, I have been concerned about ensuring that I do not jeopardize it by overlooking any technicalities. If I have a valid re-entry permit, can I simply return to Japan before the entry ...