ARC plus Dependents visa questions


I am American. My wife is Cambodian. My son is American. We intend to enter Taiwan on visa-exempt entry for me and my son. And an ROC Travel Authorization Certificate for my wife (she has a US visitor visa in her passport). We’ve done this before when we visited.

After landing I intend on signing a contract to work at a school. I will apply for the ARC, and would like to the have my son and wife be dependents on my work visa.

Is it possible to do this? Will we have to leave the country to apply for my son and wife’s visa? Or can we do the spousal/dependent visa application within the country after we arrive and I have my ARC?

Would we be better off applying for visitor visas before arriving instead of visa-free entry? If so, can this be done online or would we have to travel to Vietnam to apply? (We’re currently living in Cambodia)

Thank you!

Its been discussed before, do a search. In my experience yes you can convert any visa, but if its a landing visa it is more hassle, visitor visa is better. if it was me id book whatever is the cheapest flight and figure it out from there. or fly via BKK or sonewhere that you can apply for visitor visas.

be aware that you are going to need cetified translations of marriage and birth certs, better to get them as soon as possible

Thanks for responding.

Translations to Chinese or English is okay too? I think I read something on the gov’t website about either being accepted.

not sure, but chinese is probably safer, and authenticated, id contact the national immigration agency before you leave, just incase they try to send you back to cambodia to get them authenticated


And how big of a hassle is it to change landing visa over to resident visa for us? Doing research now on getting visitor visas before we go, and that’s a pretty big hassle as well.

You will need a TECO certified and authenticated translation of your marriage certificate.

I’m assuming that your wife does not have a green card. So probably this needs to be done where you got married. You may also need your original work permit.

Does the landing visa in your post mean a visitor visa? You may need almost the same hassle. The difference may be just doing it in or out of taiwan.

ROC Travel Authorization Certificate allows your wife to stay for 30 days, right? If it is not extendable, you should finish everything within the period, so anyway, it seems better to prepare documents before you will move in Taiwan.

How does a foreigner renew or apply for an ARC?(Serial No. 0902)

Instructions for Application for Residency Status by Foreign Nationals with Visitor Visas(Serial No. 0915)

Resident Visas for White Collar Workers

“Applicants who enter the R.O.C. (Taiwan) on a non-extendable Visitor Visa for the purposes of employment, investment, business or tourism may apply for a Resident Visa 7 work days before the duration of stay expires. The applicants may apply, without having to leave Taiwan, to the Bureau of Consular Affairs or any of its Central, Southwestern, Southern, or Eastern Taiwan Offices.”

“Applicants who enter the R.O.C. (Taiwan) without a visa and have obtained a work permit issued by competent authorities of the R.O.C. (Taiwan) may apply to the Bureau of Consular Affairs or any of its Central, Southwestern, Southern, or Eastern Taiwan Offices for an extendable Visitor Visa. Subsequently and with the extendable Visitor Visa, the applicants must apply to the National Immigration Agency for an Alien Resident Certificate.”

Countries eligible for Visa-exempt entry(Serial No. 0909)

"b However, aliens entering the R.O.C. through visa-exemption may apply for a visitor visa within the visa-exemption period on the following conditions at the Bureau of Consular Affairs and branch offices of MOFA.

ii white- collar professionals obtaining the work permit within. the visa-exemption period, plus their spouse and minors (under age 20) entering the R.O.C. together."

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just incase they try to send you back to cambodia to get them authenticated

OP did not indicate if they were married in Cambodia.

The main point is that the translation of the marriage certificate will need to be authenticated by a TECO office

Friendly reminder! :wall:

Please do not confuse visa-free entry with a landing visa. Thank you! :rainbow: :peace_symbol: :smiley:

Americans are eligible for visa-free entry. Cambodians are apparently not eligible. (Only India, Thailand, the Philippines, Vietnam & Indonesia are in the special visa exemption program for visitors of western countries, if the English page linked to by Tando is up to date – but ask your local TECO or TECRO just in case.)

Usually there is no work visa. Your employer will apply for a work permit. (Do not start work before the date of validity on the permit, and do not start work before the permit is issued). Once the work permit is issued, you will apply for a resident visa and ARC. Once you have an ARC, you will qualify for National Health Insurance.


yea I assumed they were married in Cambodia. You are assuming that they were not married in China. Assumptions assumptions, everywhere.

Depending on who you get, it could be easy, or a hassle to turn the visa exempt into a visitor visa. I did it before. I just applied to change the visa exempt into a visitor visa in Taipei. Took a week or something.

Next time I wanted to do the same thing but my employer didn’t believe it was possible. Without that back up I didn’t bother attempting it so I just did a visa run instead, which is pricey for a family.

We were married in Hong Kong.

In my friend’s experience, he initially went to Taiwan by himself then got his ARC. Once he had that, he applied for the dependent visas of his wife and child. I don’t think the nationality matters, as long as you have the required documents (birth certificate, marriage certificate, passport, etc…) authenticated in the country of citizenship of both your wife and child, and then the TECO office in those countries.

Since you’re in Cambodia, get in touch with the TECO there and get the requirements from them. I think you and your son (assuming you’re both American citizens) would need to have the US embassy in Cambodia authentic your documents before you can pass them on to TECO Cambodia. Your wife would need to have her docs authenticated by the related Cambodian authorities. This is a necessary step to getting a resident visa.

I don’t thin it’s necessary to have a Chinese translation of docs if they are already in English. But the best authority to ask is TECO in Cambodia.

cool, in that case I would get it authenticated in Hong Kong, at TECO there. That gives you the possibility of doing a combined visa-authentication run.

If I was you I wiould make sure and call the TECO in hong kong and the immigration in Taipei. Don’t rely on hearsay here.

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Been difficult wrapping my head around all this. Thanks for all the help!

@mrcade, If you have any document issued by the US government agency/department, it needs to be authenticated by TECO in the area of the department’s location, not by the US embassy in Cambodia. If the document is issued by the US embassy in Cambodia, the TECO in Cambodia will authenticate it. If it is issued in US, TECO in US will authenticate it.

Right, authentication is done by TECOs.

What if there’s no TECO in Cambodia? (there’s not)

The Taipei Economic and Cultural Office, Ho Chi Minh City (Chinese: 駐胡志明市台北經濟文化辦事處) covers Cambodia.