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Q: Obtaining Birth Certificate/Family Registry from Japan online ( Answered 4 out of 5 stars,   6 Comments )
Subject: Obtaining Birth Certificate/Family Registry from Japan online
Category: Miscellaneous
Asked by: dartmansbabe-ga
List Price: $5.00
Posted: 05 Dec 2002 15:05 PST
Expires: 04 Jan 2003 15:05 PST
Question ID: 119975
My mother is a Japanese citizen, and needs to obtain a birth
certificate/family registry from Japan so she can get a Passport to
visit her family for the holidays.  Due to time constraints, I was
wondering if there was a way to do this online, and what the web
address is?
Subject: Re: Obtaining Birth Certificate/Family Registry from Japan online
Answered By: hailstorm-ga on 08 Dec 2002 18:16 PST
Rated:4 out of 5 stars

Because each city handles requests for Koseki Tohon (Japanese family
registry) differently, we would need to know the name of the city your
mother is currently registered in.  But I positive that there is no
city that currently allows online payment of family registry requests,
so even if you can contact a city office online, you would still need
to send payment via the mail before your request can be processed, and
would probably not have this document in time to obtain the required

However, as a Koseki Tohon is a public document, anyone with a valid
reason can go to your mother's city office and obtain one for her. 
Thus, the fastest way for you to obtain this would be to have your
mother contact a trusted friend or relative near her registered city
office that can obtain this document and have it sent to her by
express mail.

Clarification of Answer by hailstorm-ga on 09 Dec 2002 13:01 PST

Thank you for your rating. With regard to Chiyota-ku, you can find the
city's English website online at

At the bottom of this page is the address and a map for the City
Office. They offer counciling by phone in English on Monday, Tuesday,
and Thursday from 9:00am to 3:00pm Japan time.  You can also try
contacting them by email at  Tuesday
hours start about three hours after this comment is posted if you are
interested in the phone option.
dartmansbabe-ga rated this answer:4 out of 5 stars
I received an answer fast, she used terminology from the native
country, which gave me the feeling she really did her research. 

Subject: Re: Obtaining Birth Certificate/Family Registry from Japan online
From: gomichan-ga on 08 Dec 2002 17:24 PST
I don't think that Japan is that advanced in 
governmental Internet services.  They just announced
a country-wide effort to move in that direction.

I doubt that you would be able to have the Japanese
government mail a copy of your mother's registry 
information to an overseas address at this timeframe.

It would be best if you ask a relative in Japan
to act as a proxy...but you would need your mother's
official "seal" (I think)
Subject: Re: Obtaining Birth Certificate/Family Registry from Japan online
From: gomichan-ga on 08 Dec 2002 17:27 PST
That being said...Why hasn't she renewed her passport?
There are several consulates throughout the States.
She should contact the staff there to see what the
best course of action would be...(but to have her passport
lapse while abroad may be somewhat problematic...I think)

You can find a list of all consulates in the USA (as well as the
world) here...
Subject: Re: Obtaining Birth Certificate/Family Registry from Japan online
From: dartmansbabe-ga on 09 Dec 2002 01:03 PST
My mother has been in the U.S. since 1957, and has always had a
current passport (they used to only be good for 5 years).  She is 73
years old, and her last passport expired in 2000.  She has had a hard
time with breast cancer, and therefore didn't feel up to getting it
renewed prior to its expiration.  She was also to a point where she
didn't think she would feel strong enough to ever go home again.  She
seems to have come through the chemo, and wanted to see her family one
last time before the holidays.  Her memory is not so good, as is her
hearing and eyesight, and at the Japanese Consulate in Los Angeles, I
asked if they had a sample form with english subtitles so I could
assist her if filling out the form, but they did not.  Her family
registry is  from "Chiyota-ku Kiyoi-cho Ichiban-chi" (I hope my
spelling is correct, my apologies if it is not.)  You wouldn't happen
to know what city office handles that area, would you?  Thanks again
for all the information!
Subject: Re: Obtaining Birth Certificate/Family Registry from Japan online
From: dartmansbabe-ga on 09 Dec 2002 14:21 PST
After receiving clarification (less than one day!) I wish I had rated
this answer 5 stars!  I couldn't think of anything that wasn't
Subject: Re: Obtaining Birth Certificate/Family Registry from Japan online
From: gomichan-ga on 09 Dec 2002 15:39 PST
The Chiyoda-ward (of Chiyoda-ku) has an online instruction
of how to proceed with the acquisition of a copy of the 

1. It is fully in Japanese.
   - If you use Internet Explorer, you might want to 
   look into downloading Japanese fonts.
   - There is are some Adobe Acrobat files.  You might
   want to look into downloading Adobe Japanese font packs from Adobe.

2. There are two major choices :
  1. You need to either have a friend/relative act as a proxy.
   (Item #1 describes filing the application AT the ward office.  
   Item #2 is filing the application at some other "booth"

  2. You can ask by regular mail (item #3)

  For either choice, you need to download the forms on the 
  website and fill out in Japanese.
  For the regular mail choice...I do not know how you would make
  payment from abroad.  The form asks for a money-order equivalent
  which is usually bought at Japanese post offices.

There should be some way of renewing the passport even if it lapsed
if you have the original lapsed passport without going through 
the whole process of getting the paperwork all the way from Japan.
Then again, red tape was never my forte.

As hailstorm officially answers, I agree that the quickest way
would to ask a friend or relative to do the deed for you.
Subject: Re: Obtaining Birth Certificate/Family Registry from Japan online
From: gomichan-ga on 09 Dec 2002 16:25 PST
Using an International Postal Money Order may be the
way to go if you're going the request by regular mail path.

Then again, you'll have to contact the ward office to
see if they'd accept it.

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