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Immigration & Work Permits

Work Permits

In order to work in Taiwan, a foreign worker must first sign an employment contract with the company, where the company must then apply for a work permit from the Ministry of Labor before the worker may work in Taiwan. A work visa and an Alien Residence Certificate is required to legally reside in Taiwan during the duration of employment in Taiwan.

There are regulations that outline the permitted industries and occupation types. Among the permitted industries for foreign workers are oceanic fishing, housemaid, manufacturing, construction, nursing, bilingual translation and cooks.  Taiwan does allow the employment of specialized foreign workers who are able to provide specialized knowledge and skills for competitive technologies.

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The employer is the sponsor for the employee and may employ foreign workers on the basis of an employment relationship or a contractual relationship to fulfil a specified obligation. Either way, the employer should be aware of the regulations and steps to fully sponsor a foreign employee for work in Taiwan.

Sponsorship Process:

1.  Offer of employment

The employee must receive a letter of invitation or employment contract from the employer in Taiwan, indicating an offer to work in the nation. The contract should be signed and returned to the employer, who may then proceed to the application for a work permit.

It should be noted that employers who have been incorporated in Taiwan for less than a year have minimum capital requirements that must be met.

2. Application for work permit

The employer must submit an application to the Council of Labor Affairs for a work permit. The work permit is typically issued for six months’ validity, although may be extended up to a maximum period of three years.

For the application of the work permit, there are two job categories, which are specialized or technical workers and managerial employees. For the employer to be eligible to hire managerial employees, there are more stringent revenue requirements. In addition, different types of employment require different documents.

The foreign employer must meet one of the following requirements when hiring a foreign employee:

  • Operational capital of NT$5 million for Taiwanese entities incorporated for less than one year
  • Revenues in excess of $NT10 million for Taiwanese entities established for one year or more
  • Total import and export commission revenue of US$400,000 for the preceding year
  • If the company is a representative office, the necessary approval is given by the relevant authorities
  • The company has R&D centers or operational headquarters approved by the authorities
  • The employer has made significant contributions to the economic development of Taiwan

Required documents from employer

  • Copy of most recent year’s corporate income tax return
  • Copy of the company representative’s ID card or passport
  • Copy of the company’s registration certification, business registration and other permits
  • Copy of the letter of foreign investment approval issued by Investment Commission
  • Copy of employment contract

Required documents from employee

  • Copy of education diploma authenticated by a Taiwanese embassy. Typically a bachelor, master or Ph.D. degree
  • Copy of authenticated work experience certificate. Proof of employment should be at least five years’ experience in a related field
  • Copy of individual income tax statement
  • Medical examination report and receipt for examination fee
  • Copy of passport
  • Two passport photos

Cost:

  • NT$2,000 for each approval application
  • NT$100 for review fee

Time: 7 – 14 days

3. Application for visa

Once the work permit has been approved by the Ministry of Labor, the foreign worker must apply for a work visa from an Overseas Office of the Republic of China (Taiwan). The visa allows the employee to reside in Taiwan for the duration of employment.

Foreign passport holders entering Taiwan must have valid visas when they enter, although the Ministry of Foreign Affairs may grant exemptions to nationals from certain countries. A visa may be single-entry valid for three months, or multiple entries valid from three months to a year.

The employee must submit the visa application to the Taiwanese Bureau of Consular Affairs in their resident country. The consular officer will examine the application and relevant documents, and will request an interview if necessary. If approved, the employee will be issued the visa.

Required documents from employee

  • Passport valid for at least 6 months
  • Completed visa application form
  • Two passport-sized photos
  • Work permit provided by employer
  • Any identification documents if spouse and children are accompanying the employee

Cost:

  • Single-entry resident visa: US$66
  • Multiple-entry resident visa: US$132
  • Additional handling fee: $US24 for visa applications made at port of entry

Time: 30 working days

4. Application for Alien Resident Certificate

Once the employee receives the work permit from the employer and has visa clearance, they are allowed to travel to Taiwan. The employee must obtain an Alien Resident Certificate (ARC), which is proof that the visa may be used for day-to-day activities without the need for a passport while the employee is in Taiwan. The ARC also allows multiple re-entries, which must be shown at immigration checkpoints if the employee intends on entering and exiting Taiwan. This is done through a local National Immigration Agency (NIA) in Taiwan, and must be done within 15 days of arrival in Taiwan.

Required documents from employee

  • Application form
  • One color photo
  • Original passport and visitor visa
  • A notarized health certificate if required
  • A certificate of criminal record of required
  • A certificate of current residence
  • A certificate of cause

Cost:

  • NT$1,000 for ARC valid for one year for a resident visa.
  • NT$3,200 for applicants holding a visitor visa.

5. Employee medical examination

Within 3 days of arrival in Taiwan, the foreign worker must undergo a medical examination if it is the first time traveling to Taiwan. This can be done at a local Center for Disease Control.

6. Application for employee insurance

Once the employee has obtained the work permit, visa and Alien Resident Permit, he/she is able to work under the employer. However, the employer must take further measures and registration steps within three days of receiving the ARC, or will be subject to a small fine.

The employer should apply for coverage enrollment of labor insurance with the Bureau of Labor Insurance upon the date of the worker’s arrival.

Required documents from employer

  • Application form
  • Copy of the employee’s current residence proof
  • Identification proof of labor
  • Copy of the employee’s full passport
  • Copy of an authenticated ARC
  • Copy of employee’s work permit

 

7. Other post-arrival applications for employer

Within three days’ of the worker’s arrival, the employer must apply for an entrance report at the local Department of City Government. This must be done or the employer’s recruitment permit and the employer’s work permit may be annulled.

The employer must also apply for the coverage enrollment of National Health Insurance within 3 days from the date the ARC is issued. This is done through the Bureau of National Health Insurance.

Once these steps have been taken by the employer, the employee will be properly registered in Taiwan with the relevant authorities and may commence employment in Taiwan.

Use the Shield GEO Employer of Record Solution

Once you get in touch with us, one of our consultants will take all the work off your hands, coordinate with our local partners to get all the required permits organised, provide the processing time, costs, document-checklist and keep you informed through the process.

Contact us to find out more.

Types of visas in Taiwan

Category Description of Visa
Visitor visa The visitor visa is intended for foreign nationals who wish to enter Taiwan temporarily must apply for this visa. Nationals from certain countries that have visa-exempt entry status may enter for stays of 30 days or less, although any period of time longer will require a visitor visa.

Depending on the nationality, visitor visas may be issued for single entry or multiple entries. The validity of the visitor visa is valid from 3 months up to 1 year, unless stated in reciprocal visa agreements between Taiwan and certain countries.

The holder of the visitor visa allows durations of stay of less than 60 days, which may not be extended, and periods of stay for 60 days or longer, which may be extended up to 180 days. The extension of stay is administered by the National Immigration Agency of the Ministry of the Interior.

Processing Time: 4 working days

Fee: US$50 for single entry, US$100 for multiple entry
Working Holiday Visa The working holiday arrangement allows nationals from certain countries aged between 18 and 30 years to have an extended holiday in Taiwan with some short-term work or study arrangements. Both work and study are to supplement the living arrangements during the stay or to explore Taiwan further.

The working holiday visa is valid for a period of 12 months. The visa allows the individual to stay in Taiwan for 180 days, and may be extended for another 180 days. The application for extending the working holiday visa should be submitted to the local offices of the National Immigration Agency.

Individuals may legally engage in work without applying for a work permit under a working holiday visa, although may not work for the same employer for more than 6 months. Similarly, students may study up to 4 months under this visa arrangement, without any requirements to take Mandarin language courses.

Processing Time: 4 working days

Application Fee: $US100
Resident visa Foreign citizens intending to travel to Taiwan and live in the nation for more than 6 months should apply for a Resident visa, giving them the authority to reside in Taiwan. The resident visa may be obtained if the national is an immediate family member of a Taiwanese citizen with a household registered in Taiwan, or obtained an employment relationship with a sponsored employer in Taiwan. Authorization must be given from the Workforce Development Agency.

The resident visa is valid for 3 months from the date of issuance, and is normally granted for a single entry. Resident visa holders must apply for an Alien Resident Certificate (ARC) and a re-entry permit at local centers of the National Immigration Agency 15 days from entering Taiwan. The resident visa is usually valid for as long as the ARC is valid, which usually extends until the employment contract expires.

Processing Time: 4 working days

Application Fee: $US132
Entrepreneur visa The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has implemented the entrepreneur visa effective as of July 31 2015, in an effort to foster greater innovation and entrepreneurship in the nation. Applicants will have their eligibility examined by the Investment Commission of the Ministry of Economic Affairs, including sufficient funding, education or patents.
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