Complete Guide to Opening a Rep Office 2011 Update


Are there any rules for lease agreement? Because I will be using the office of another company for free- can I sign some pro-forma lease agreement for few hundred NTD per month just to have it? (btw. how can I sign it as a representative if this is before the rep. office is legally established?)


You don’t need to be paying, just have the landlord’s permission and a signed letter from them to prove it. Note that it’s landlord, not lessee…


My friend told me, that the seat of RO must be recognized by the government as a business office, that it cannot be in a private flat- is that really so?


That was changed some time ago. You can register anywhere.




Ok that is HUGE news. Where did you get this info?


Sorry :blush: I thought it was already in the thread

I registered my rep. office at my girlfriend’s address. In general, you can register your business (rep. office, limited company, branch office) at any address, as long as “your work matches your surroundings”. So no scooter repair in the flat on the 5th floor, but sitting in front of the computer and sending mails is ok anywhere. Which is what you are supposed to do as a rep. :wink:

The only thing I needed was the latest house tax payment slip of the place, other than that it was smooth sailing. Somebody from the CLA came by to see me and my office, so I gave him something nice to look at.

As stated in the first post, this might imply property tax changes for the place, but so far nobody told me anything ;-). Also, outside of the scope of this thread, if you have a real limited company or branch office, and you want to deduct office cost as business expense, you should register at a commercial place.

This info is in the updated Llary post (somewhat), in the book “How to do business in Taiwan” and from the MOEA itself.

UPDATE: This is the website of the book I mentioned They had some ads here as well


Oh. Ok I knew that. And yes you will have tax issues. 1. The landlord will lose the tax break granted for properties where he/she/a relative are registered. 2. The landlord will be charged a higher rate of tax on the portion of property being used for business purposes. There are two taxes involved, property and land. I suggest you go register with the tax office and get that sorted out or else you will pay the higher amount on the entire property area rather than just the portion being used for business.


I rented a self-contained one-room apartment in Hualien City from a private individual who lived elsewhere in town, and the owner and i agreed that i would cover any increase in taxes, if necessary.

I imagine that things could get messy, if someone’s accommodation/office was not self-contained or shared in some way with others…


In your case Yuli it sounds like a great arrangement! Note that you can register as little as 1/6 of the taxable area as ‘business use,’ thereby minimizing the extra tax you’ll pay. But if it’s a small place, like >20 ping, then you probably won’t save much.


Hi guys, there is still one thing not clear to me:

If I am appointed legal representative by Power of Attorney- do I need employment contract to pay myself salary? And if I need it- who has to sign it- my home company director or me as a legal representative? If my company director- does it have to be notarized, legalized or something, or just a piece of paper with signature? The same applies for employment certificate?


I think this was mentioned before, since I asked the same question some time ago :wink: You need a contract between the foreign company and you, individual “duhastmich”. Regarding the employment card, I think LeeKohl wrote you will also need signature of the foreign company’s director. I did not have to do this, for some reason. Probably because I am also the foreign company’s director.

UPDATE: Does not need to be legalized, but should look legit and mention your duties and salary. They studied the contract quite thoroughly in my case.


Do u have any experience if it is ok by fax or scan or it must be original? Because now as I understand it, I have to first let the mother company send me signed contract in English, then get employment certificate, fill it in and send it to them, then they have to sign it and send me back…seems not very convenient.

And as you mentioned here before with claiming something as local income (in 5 percent tax level) and something as overseas income (no tax)- how do u practically do that? Lets say you get 100k as a salary which goes on your RO bank account from mother company. Can you just send these 100k to your private bank account- and then in January claim that 40k was your salary (as would be in the contract) and 60k claim as overseas income- or is it necessary to do it in more sophisticated way?

Sorry for asking lot of questions, but it is kind of difficult to understand all of the things.


A good copy could be sufficient, but that is just an educated guess. I used the original and made copies along the way for them to keep. Maybe a phone call will clear things up? There is usually somebody who speaks English.

Regarding your second question: You already talk about two accounts. So use them. In my opinion, you can not get 100k in your RO account and then claim personal foreign income on that. You would need to send 40k to your RO, then forward it to your private account. The 60k should go directly into your private account. Please keep in mind that I am not an expert on tax law, especially not the Taiwanese one.


Hi, first of all thanks for this great guide.

I haven’t found any information about working visa requirement. Is it not necessary to enter on working visa to get ARC in this case? Can I simply arrive to Taiwan on visa-exempt entry and still open Representative Office and get working ARC?


It’s all there, keep reading :slight_smile:


Hey, just one stupid question. Can you have representative office without having an employee and bank account? Just to have representative who can sign things for company in Taiwan and have Chinese stamp etc.?


Yeah, maybe I was not precise. There is this note:

However it was not clear for me. I understand it as: you do need some kind of visa to present at Immigration Office to get ARC, however, in case you don’t have any visa (beeing on visa free entry), you will first have to go to Foreign Affairs and apply for resident permit in there. Then with the resident permit you’re getting back to Immigration Office to apply for ARC. Please, correct me if I got it wrong.

How about Council of Labour Affairs? They will issue working permit without working visa?

I am asking, because this comes to me by a suprise, I thought that whenever you want to get working permit you always need a working visa. It would be extremely troublesome (and costful) for me to apply for a visa before coming, so I don’t want to make it in vain, yet I don’t want to risk beeing forced to do a visa run.


This is correct as far as I know. I already had a visitor visa, so I am not sure.

Yes, the work permit is a prerequisite for getting a resident visa / ARC. Say you would want to work as an employee for a Taiwanese company: Your Taiwanese employer applies for a work permit, if the CLA says yes, you may work in Taiwan, you can get an ARC from immigration. If the CLA says no, Taiwan does not need you, you can’t come and get a resident visa.


I’ve started a whole new thing now and can’t answer any more questions about this, sorry guys! I haven’t had a rep office since Feb 2013 so I’m totally out of touch with it anyway. Hope someone else can pick up the torch. Anyway I promise this is a very easy process, y’all can do it, I know you can. Good luck!