ARC Process for Canadian Marrying a Foreigner Who is Working in Taiwan

I’m usually good at finding the right info when searching the web, but I have to admit I’m having a hard time with this particular issue. I would appreciate some advice from others who have been in my situation.

Here’s my story:

  1. Canadian separated from long-time Filipino fiancée because of Covid in 2020, now looking to reunite after 2.5 years apart by meeting fiancée who is now living and working in Taiwan, where she is teaching English in a public school. GF has just received her ARC.

  2. We tried getting married in the Philippines before I came back to Canada but we couldn’t make it on time with all the requirements.

  3. I’ll be moving to Taiwan to live with her once they drop quarantine (in September supposedly, fingers crossed) and we’ll be getting married, and then processing my ‘‘spousal ARC’’ (right name?). I believe JFRV is only for foreigners marrying a Taiwanese citizen.

My questions:

  1. Can I go from visa-free entry to Spousal ARC without leaving TW?

  2. Do I need a criminal background check from the RCMP in order to apply for this ARC? If so, do I need it translated and authenticated by TECO in Canada as well?

  3. Are there any other situations where a criminal background check is needed, apart from working in a cram school? I won’t be getting through the process if I don’t need it for the ARC as I’m working online and won’t be teaching English.

  4. I’m interested in learning Chinese as well so I’m open to the idea of getting a student ARC if it would allow for a smoother transition once married. Is it the case?

Thank you for your assistance! Have a great day :slight_smile:

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to the best of my knowledge:

  1. if you get married, you will have to leave the country and apply again from abroad for a resident visa.
  2. criminal check is not needed for a spouse ARC.
  3. student visa is a good option. it will also allow you to have a part time work permit, whereas spouse arc doesnt come woth working rights. but that is a minor difference. if you look for a job while on the spouse ARC the employer will have to get you a work permit.

not an expert, best is to verify this with your local teco or the beauro of consular affairs (BOCA) in the ministry of foreign affairs.

Student ARCs for learning Chinese don’t come with a work permit until you’ve finished 1 year of study.
I went down this path and it was an easy transition. I had a student VISA for chinese study (no ARC yet) and got married and applied for my spouse based ARC, I didn’t need to leave Taiwan.
You don’t need to apply for a spouse visa at BOCA, just go straight to NIA.
I’m not sure how work permits are for spouses of other foreigners :confused:

If you enter on a visitor visa, you can in any cases change to an ARC without leaving the country, but if it is a visa free entry, I don’t believe it is possible. There are exceptions, I believe, and you can find those by searching this forum, but generally it’s not possible. However, it’s not hard to fly to a third country to apply for the residence visa, especially if you are waiting till COVID is over and there is no quarantine. If you don’t want to leave to get your residence visa, then try to get a visitor visa to enter Taiwan, rather than entering on a visa free stamp (which is suspended right now).

You also need it for the spouse ARC. And it must be stamped by the Taiwan rep office in your country.

Since when? Both times I applied for a spouse ARC (2018 and 2020) it was needed, and also had to be stamped by the Taiwan rep office in the UK. Mine was for marriage to Taiwanese, but I imagine it is the same rule for foreigners married to other foreigners.

We didnt have to show one for my wife, but that was in 2011.
best is to check with the authorities.

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Spousal ARC needs criminal background check and comes with open work permit.

Edit: Was in 2017 and I’m married to a local.
Protip: Call your friendly neighborhood TECO. :slight_smile:

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Not for OP tho since his spouse isn’t Taiwanese

Ah ok. I’d recommend marrying in Canada and/or the Philippines, since Taiwanese authorities do not necessarily acknowledge their own marriage certificates.

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Oh yes, perhaps @Fuzzy_Barbecue could inform OP on the dangers of two foreigners marrying in Taiwan. I know he’s had a rough time with it all


Thanks for the info people.

Marrying in either Canada or PH isn’t doable short term since girlfriend would need to leave work. We need to marry in Taiwan and we thought it would make the whole process easier since it was done in the same country, but from other posts I’ve been reading, it seems that they want a document from our respective countries that prove that our marriage was accepted there? What’s that about?

Canada doesn’t even have a marriage registry, same as Australia from what I gather. They just recognize your marriage, wherever it took place. I wonder what other Canadians had to do to get this done.

Again, from my readings, I don’t believe I need a background check for either the visitor visa or the ARC but I ordered it anyway, just in case. A costly ‘‘just in case’’, but less hassle and still cheaper than having to order it from TW.

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UK is the same, and if that is the case, Taiwan won’t ask for proof, or they might until they realize the document they want doesn’t exist. They should know

For PH though, if foreign marriages can be registered there, I would imagine your spouse will need to do so before Taiwan gov are willing to give you a spouse visa/ARC based on the marriage. Not sure if it’s possible to do that with power of attorney. Others may know, maybe @GooseEgg? If she does need to go there though, maybe she can do it in a single weekend without missing work once quarantine is over. Good luck, and keep us updated