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SSW Tokuteiginou visa

Tokuteiginou (特定技能; specified skilled worker; SSW)visa is a working visa which started in April 2019.

SSW visa has 2 types: SSW1 and SSW2.

With SSW1 you could work in 12 industries, with SSW2 in 11 industries.


You need college (senmongakko) graduate degree or certain period of experience in the related field to get working visa (such as "Engineer / Specialist in Humanities / International Services" visa).  That is, for professionals.  You cannot work at restaurant or factories, etc. doing as so-called blue workers.

SSW1, however, allows you to work at restaurant or factories, etc. You don't need college degree or work experience in the related field.  You need to pass skill test for SSW1 and Japanese language test (JLPT N4 or equivalent).  If you have successfuly finished your Technial Intern Training for 3 years, you don't need to pass skill or Japanese language test.

SSW1 visa is for the 12 industries below.

  • Nursing care (caregiving, Kaigo)

  • Building cleaning 

  • Machine parts and tooling/Industrial machinery/Electric, electronics and information 

  • Construction

  • Shipbuilding and ship machinery

  • Automobile repair and maintenance

  • Aviation

  • Accommodation (hotels)

  • Agriculture

  • Fishery & aquaculture

  • Manufacture of food and beverages

  • Food service (restaurant)

Things to know about SSW1: basic

  • Your visa period is generally for 1 year and you can renew it. 

  • You can work with SSW visa up to 5 years in total.

  • Your company provide "Support for SSW" as designated by the immigration laws.

  • You cannot bring your families from your country.

  • You could change workplaces if you want.

  • The period as SSW is not counted when you want to apply for PR.

Things to know about SSW1: more

  • SSW visa is very complicated.  It is not something you can apply for on your own.
    Companies must meet severe requirements when they start hiring a SSW and while a SSW is working for them.  Except for very big companies, they must prepare lots of documents for visa applications.  They need to submit quarterly reports to the immigration.  Etc., etc.

  • You could change your workplaces.  But you need to get visa change permission from the immigration before starting working for a new company.  This is the case even when your new company is in the same industry field.  Your SSW visa has been granted for you to work only for the company specified on the piece of paper (Shiteisho 指定書)stapled to your passport.  If you work for a different company without getting a new residence card, it is illegal.

When you want to get SSW visa or change your workplaces, please ask your employer to contact us.


11 industries welcome workers to work with SSW2 visa.

Among 12 industries, only Caregiving (Kaigo) does not have SSW2 visa because skilled and licensed caregivers can work with "Caregiver (Kaigo)" visa.

Merits of SSW2

  • You can renew your visa as long as you have employment contract (no upper limit).

  • You can bring your families from your country.

  • You might become eligible to apply for PR in the future. 

Below is a rough summary of requirements.

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