Companies expanding to Taiwan may find it challenging to obtain work visas, as Taiwan’s permitted industries and occupations have specific regulations for everything from the oceanic fishing industry to manufacturing. Plus, employees need both a work visa and an Alien Residence Certificate to legally live in Taiwan during their employment.
Types of Work Visas in Taiwan
Taiwan offers several types of visas, including:
- Visitor visa: A visitor visa is meant for foreign nationals who want to enter Taiwan temporarily. It can be single-entry or multiple-entry and is valid for three months up to one year.
- Working holiday visa: This arrangement gives foreign nationals aged 18 to 30 years from certain countries the ability to stay in Taiwan for short-term work or study. The visa is valid for 12 months and allows the person to reside in the country for 180 days.
- Resident visa: Foreign citizens looking to live in Taiwan for more than six months need a resident visa. They can obtain this visa if they have an immediate family member who is a Taiwanese citizen or have secured a job with a sponsored employer in the country. It’s valid for three months and is typically single-entry.
- Entrepreneur visa: To foster more innovation and entrepreneurship, Taiwan added this visa in 2015. The Investment Commission of the Ministry of Economic Affairs will examine the candidate’s eligibility, funding, education, or patents.
What Are the Requirements to Obtain a Work Visa in Taiwan?
When applying for a work visa in Taiwan, there are certain required documents, including:
- Completed and signed application form
- Two passport-sized photos with a white background that were taken within the past six months
- A passport valid for at least six more months with no fewer than three blank pages
- A health certificate issued in the past three months
- Any additional documents based on profession
- A work permit (every employee must obtain a work permit before they can get a visa)
Keep in mind that Taiwan’s authorities may ask for more documents on a case-by-case basis. All records should be in English or Chinese, and they must be translated by an official translator and authenticated by a Taiwanese overseas diplomatic mission.
What Is the Application Process Like for a Taiwan Work Visa?
Your employees have two different processes to obtain a Taiwan work visa — at a Taiwanese diplomatic mission if they’re in another country or at the Bureau of Consular Affairs (BOCA) if they’re currently living in Taiwan. After you get a work permit on behalf of your employee, they must apply for their work visa one of those two ways. However, it’s more complicated to apply for a work visa abroad, as the process includes these steps:
- Completing the application form
- Turning in all required documents
- Submitting everything in-person at the Taiwanese diplomatic mission within 30 days of completing the online application
- Waiting for processing, then collecting the passport
- Applying for a residence permit at a local National Immigration Agency service center within 15 days
If the employee is already in Taiwan under a visitor visa for employment purposes, they can apply to turn the visitor visa into a resident work visa. They must apply at the Bureau of Consular Affairs in Taiwan after you obtain a work permit, and at least eight days before the visitor visa expires. Once the employee gets their visa, they need to apply for a Taiwan residence permit within 15 days.
What Else Should You Consider?
As an employer, you are also required to put together certain documents for the application process. A copy of your company’s most recent income tax return and representative’s identification documents, such as a passport, will be necessary to sponsor a work permit. Other required documents include copies of:
- Registration certificate, business registration, and other permits
- A letter of foreign investment approval from the Investment Commission
- Employment contract
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