Insurance instead of 身元保証人?

A number of Japanese companies want a guarantor/cosigner from new employees, including (sometimes especially) folks from overseas.

Its pretty hard to have someone in Japan who you can ask to bear this responsibility from you when you don’t have family in Japan though. Even worse if you’re new to Japan or not even there yet.

Is there some kind of professional insurance that can stand in place of a cosigner (similar to what a lot of us have to do for apartments) to get around this issue?

If anyone has ideas on how to handle this situation, I’d love to hear them.

This isn’t something I’ve personally encountered, and I don’t think it is standard practice (at least among companies that hire non-Japanese). Personally, it isn’t something I’d worry about. If a company really wants to hire you, they should be the ones to find some way around their own policy. If the lack of a guarantor is really a showstopper for them, chances are they aren’t a good place to work.