Most of mid-long term foreign residents in Japan apply for extension of their status (visa) once every one to five years, except for Permanent Resident or Highly Skilled Professional (ii) whose status has no expiration date.
When the extension is permitted, Immigration Office assigns extension period and thus a new expiration date. This extension period is of great concern to the world talents in Japan. They have to apply again for extension next year if only 1 year is assigned for the period. Re-application is not required for 5 years if 5 year period is assigned (when of course there is no change in residential status).
For immigration policy administration, Immigration Office assigns a shorter period for an applicant whose residential situations are not stable so that the office can review the stability by having the applicant re-apply more frequently. The office assigns a longer period for those showing stable residential situations.
There is no publicized laws regulating this assignment. It is understood that Immigration Office uses internal guidelines when it decides the period. Please visit this page within this site for details of the internal guidelines, how Immigration Office assigns extension period, which gives you hints for getting a longer period at your next extension.