"Employment gold card" for some foreigners

Okay, got through! I got transferred a couple of times, so if anyone’s also dealing with this problem, the number to call is +886 2 2388 9393 ext 2361.

jimbob132 was right; they wanted me to document entries into China. I didn’t 100% understand what they were saying, due to lack of fluency, so to be safe I took pictures of every visa page in my passport to show that the trips I mentioned were the only trips I took.

They didn’t tell me to dig up my expired passport to find previous trips; I think it’s because my passport is from 2011 the trips I took were in 2016 and 2018 (i.e., more than 4 years later), but again I can’t be certain.


Sharing my (almost) complete timeline here as a Hong Kong citizen living in the US:

8/18: Applied under Economy, chose SF TECO for pickup.
8/21: Asked to correct Hong Kong/Macau residents confirmation form, fill in optional info in the online form. Submitted them the same day.
8/24: Status changed to “Under Review to Professional Review by Workforce Development Agency”
9/11: Status changed to “Under Inspection”
9/16: Approval email received, status changed to “IC Card in Process”

Waiting on the authorization PDF now :grinning:

edit: authorization PDF is available on 9/16


Hope this helps someone: worried about overstaying my visitor visa while waiting for Gold Card approval, I found out that we can extend a 90-day visitor visa (COVID special entry permit) in person at NIA exactly once (for 90 more days) if we do so 15 days before its expiry.

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Just in case anyone else is self-employed/freelancing etc and wondering about health insurance:

  1. I went to the local NHI office here in Tainan
  2. They were extremely helpful, one wonderful lady personally helped me at every counter
  3. I was in an out in about 30 minutes
  4. They did ask if I had been in Taiwan for at least 6 months without leaving and after getting the Gold card
  5. They needed the gold card, passport, photographs (but there was also a booth there to take them), and my rental contract (not needed but it helped me by having it in the end)

The only weird issue I had was actually trying to find the location, outside of Taipei it seems the official site doesn’t list locations (at least when I was searching in English). I had to ask a local friend to point it to me on the map. :man_shrugging:

Oh, and it’s below $1000 a month (at least for now) and they’ll send a monthly bill in the mail that I can pay at 7/11/Family Mart etc.

Hope this info helps!



Thanks for sharing!

Do you know if you will have to retroactively pay a higher rate if your income turns out to be higher? Or does the self-employment income only affect future payments?

I’m really not sure how the payments get adjusted. My guess (emphasis) is it’s possibly related to the tax filing at the end of each year. Perhaps if you are in a higher bracket they adjust your health insurance rates.

Really not sure and would love anyone that knows more about the subject to reply here!

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Oh I forgot to mention. This time in Taiwan (I had lived here before, years ago), I didn’t choose a Chinese name. Can’t remember why, maybe just forgot how to type my old complex name.

Anyway, it hasn’t lead me to have any problems with banking, renting an apartment, or getting a mobile phone contract (although each of those had a hell of a lot of troubles believing the ‘gold card’ was real…).

But for this health insurance card, they actually used my old Chinese name from the last time I lived here. I asked how they knew it, they said it was on record from my last one. As for why, they said it needs a Chinese name.

The nice part was they didn’t make me go get a stamp for it (perhaps because it’s not ‘official’ any more?). But they did have me take special care when writing and signing my name (a very important difference, please remember to ask before writing your English name).

Just FYI, cheers!

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Sorry to bother you! @Awvelo May I ask if your spouse dropped off the special entry visa (resident visa?) application in person or by mail? Did it take 5 biz days for TRO London to send your spouse the visa from received date? I dropped mine off and paid express service, just wondering how many days it would take for them to mail me the resident visa. Thanks!

We in fact mailed our application to the TRO in the UK, and we did not request special processing. But, the TRO did deliver as promised on their timing. They in fact beat their timing. Great staff.

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Cheers! @Awvelo

Love it when they only accept a signature that is a perfect copy of the passport font :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: and are surprised to see you surprised.

Just to confirm: it is not 6 months from the date of issue of the Gold Card, but from the day that you landed in Taiwan, correct? Did they check the stamp on your passport?

Thanks :pray:

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Hi @qwert_zuiop,

but of course the tax information for last year falls short of the 160k average monthly salary for the year. I stated that I only started that job in July last year multiple times (and one of the tax documents also says so)

Since you later on received the card, do I understand it correctly that they did not mind that your 160k income was not given for each year over the last 3 years?

I submitted my application a week ago and status has not changed at all (Under inspection), although for you apparently after only 2 days it switched to “second review” - but ok, I guess patience is key here…

Thanks and regards,

Yes, they did not mind. I reached that threshold in 2017. In fact, in 2018 I didn’t have any income and in 2019 only a half year’s income. As long as there is one full year which meets the average, it should be rather easy to pass without any additional documents. Even if it’s some years back.

Doing it again, I would just submit my yearly statement for 2017 without any additional documents.

Yes, patience is key :wink:
Although judging from the other replies here it seems like they really improved in processing time again. Maybe you’ll already be approved in two week’s time - who knows :slightly_smiling_face:

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I would like to confirm this with a FAQ from Taiwan CDC website:

FAQ Question no. 9:
Q9:Do foreign nationals residents who hold a valid resident visa need to submit for inspection a certificate of a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test result before boarding?
A9:Foreign nationals with a residence visa who wish to come to Taiwan may apply for an ARC at the National Immigration Agency after entry. Therefore, they may be exempt from providing such a certificate before boarding. However, they are still required to undergo home quarantine for 14 days after entering Taiwan.

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Correct, unless you were in Taiwan beforehand in which case it is the issue date; or if you have a Taiwanese employer you get NHI immediately.

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It’s kind of both, haha.

I believe you need to have the gold card for at least 6 months and then have to have been in Taiwan for a continuous 6 months to get the health card. Something along those lines anyway.

I guess it could be logically expressed as “six months from the date of issue of the gold card or the date of entry into Taiwan, whichever was latest” or “six months from the date you were officially living in Taiwan with an ARC”. If the gold card was collected in country, the key date is the date of issue; if it was collected outside, the key date is the date of entry.

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Wow. I asked this same question at NIA last month and was told I could not extend my Covid special entry permit / visitor’s visa. Not at all. Btw, it doesn’t say “no extensions”. Guess I got someone who doesn’t know immigration rules.

@travis-travels Lol normal :rofl: :rofl: Always go back to the same office or another branch and ask again to someone else to double-check. I could write an encyclopedia on the contradicting replies that I got over the years from different government officials on the same topic. Then one of my best friends was posted to NIA during his Military Service a few years back and… yea… kind of confirmed :speak_no_evil:

I could understand a mistake or apathy from immigration (or any government job in any country for that matter)… but to misinform someone about visa rules while they are behind a closed border is unforgivable. I’ve been stressing and scrambling with contingency options for months. Frustration does not even begin to describe it.