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Work Permits and Visas for Foreign Workers in Taiwan

There are two basic pathways to obtain work permits and visas for your foreign workers on assignment to Taiwan.  The first is the historic approach of obtaining  (1) a work permit, (2) alien resident certificate, (3) multiple entry permit and (4) residence visa.  These are all separate applications with their own requirements. 

The second option is to apply for an Employment PASS, which is designed for foreign professionals being assigned to Taiwan by a foreign company.  The PASS is essentially a 4 in 1 visa that includes all of the permits and certificates in one permission.  Although this sounds like an appealing way to handle the work permit process, a quick glance at the list of documents and requirements might be daunting for some HR departments.  

There are other ways to approach your employee assignments in Taiwan, such as a GEO employer of record, easing the burden on HR departments using the DIY method.  Here is a complete overview of all the documents and applications required

Taiwan Work Visa Processing Time

The normal work permit is valid for up to three years and renewable, and can take up to one month for processing.  The employee must have the work permit in hand before entering Taiwan, and cannot apply while in country with a visitor or business visa.

The Employment PASS is designed to be quicker to approve, and saves the time of submitting multiple applications for each immigration document.  Still, the PASS application must be approved by three different agencies, so delays can be expected.  It is best to apply well ahead of the scheduled work assignment.

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Immigration and Work Visa Requirements in Taiwan 

The work visa requirements for foreigners are not unusual, as long as the employer has a legal corporate entity in Taiwan and all the documents are submitted correctly.  Among the specific requirements you must submit the employment contract and a copy of the employer’s business registration and incorporation documents.

Residence Permit for Foreign Workers in Taiwan 

For stays longer than 90 days (which is common for most work assignments) a residence permit (alien residence certificate) is required (included in the Employment PASS visa).  Stand-alone residence permits take 2 – 5 weeks to process, so it is important to start ahead of time on the application.

After reviewing both options for work permits in Taiwan it does seem the Employment PASS is the easiest, but if you do not have a legal entity in Taiwan you may want to consider using the Shield GEO local employer of record to handle it for you.  Our local experts can speed the application process and help you deploy workers quickly, while avoiding the time and expense of setting up a corporation in Taiwan.

Here’s everything you need to know about employing an overseas worker in Taiwan. 

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