Is it easier to get married in Taiwan or HK for 2 foreigners?

My fiancee and I have been engaged for about 2 years and would like to get married. We are both Australian citizens. I am currently living and working in Taipei and my partner is here on 90 day visa-exempt entry.

We have been looking into what would be the easiest and fastest option to get married without going back to Australia. From what I have read on these forums it seems marriage in Taiwan can be a rather complicated process. From what I understand we would need to obtain single status certificates from Australia, send them to TECO there, then get them approved here and finally get married.

The other option is go to HK and get married, which doesn’t require single status proof. We can get our marriage certificate authenticated at TECO in HK, then have it recognised in Taiwan by BOCA/NIA.

This is my understanding of the process in HK/Taiwan, I may be wrong on some points though!

Once our marriage is recognised in Taiwan I want to get my partner an ARC as a dependent spouse, based on my ARC. How does this work? Is it correct that I need more than 6 months left on my ARC when he applies for the dependent ARC? My current ARC expires in about 8 months, so I am concerned that by the time we are married and recognised in Taiwan it may be too late for him to be eligible for the ARC. Is it possible to apply for an ARC extension on the expiry date of my ARC so that it would he would qualify as a dependent?

Any advice on what would be the fastest way for us to get married and get my partner a dependent ARC would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!

The only thing I can get you with any certainty is that YES you need a minimum of six months on your ARC otherwise he won’t be able to get his.

FYI dependent spouses with ARC are not allowed to work.

This is correct. You’ll also need to get them translated and the translation certified. I might be able to help provide a generic translation of the one from Victoria if that’s of help. Do you have someone to help you on the Australia end with TECO visits?

Ah of course, I forgot about getting it translated! Thank you! I can find a translation service as we are both from South Australia and it appears the single status form is different in every state. Unfortunately there is no TECO office in S.A. so we will need to send our documents to the in Melbourne office, but we can certainly get a friend to help us with visits if need be.

Do I need to have anything on my ARC changed after we get married? I ticked the “single” box on my ARC application form, will this need to be updated?

This will let you avoid you begging TECO to arrange express post, and having to go to your bank to arrange a money order to pay them. However, I can confirm it still works without someone on the ground in Melbourne.

If you, your partner, or a friend, have the capability to translate the certificate you can do it yourself. Then you can present the original and the translation to a local notary and they’ll probably just charge you the notarization fee if the translation is accurate. Cheaper than paying for translation and same effect.

Do you know how long the TECO process takes? I wonder if it would be faster to get the documents authenticated by TECO, translated and get married in Taiwan than go to HK as I’m being told the earliest possible date for a HK wedding is Feb/March.

Oh, I just found that they can do a next day service!

Indeed they do, I can confirm it was a same-day turnaround in my experience.

It turns out I previously wrote up some instructions for this.

TECO advised attaching a clear cover letter with all the forms and documents so they knew what service was being requested. Here’s a sample:


This is fantastic, thank you so much! Your instructions and cover letter are most helpful!

So we have decided to get married here in Taiwan and am hoping to post our request for single status certificates tomorrow. I can see in your instructions that copies of our ID (passports) sent to TECO do not need to be certified copies. On the website of the Melbourne TECO office it doesn’t say that ID needs to be certified but on the main TECO Australia website it does say that the copies need to certified.

I’ve reached out to TECO Melbourne for confirmation but they are closed until Thursday. I am hoping that if I do need to get them certified that TECO will accept this being done by the Australia Office here rather than a real JP.

Happy to help.

You’ll find that local notaries will refuse to certify foreign ID. In Taiwan, your only option to get a certified copy of an Australian passport or drivers license is the Australia Office (appointment required, AUD72/document).

My application worked without certified ID, but these things change with the wind. You’ll need to call TECO anyway to confirm the amount to make the money order for (and beg for help with the postage), so can ask then.

Just an update in case anyone else in the future has the same question about if copies of ID need to be authenticated before being sent to TECO - The Melbourne office told me both over the phone and in an email that they do not need to be authenticated.

The process is underway! Looking forward to getting married in Taiwan :smiley:

1 Like

Sorry for reviving my old thread. I have a question about the Chinese name declaration form we must complete when we get married at the Household Registration Office.

We had our single status certificates from Australia authenticated at TECO, then had these translated and notarised in Taiwan. On the translated version it (obviously) has the Chinese translation of our names.

Do we have to use these Chinese translations of our names on our Chinese name declaration?

A Taiwanese friend said she thinks we do have to use these. But from what I’ve read elsewhere it seems that we can simply choose a Chinese name to put on the declaration, it doesn’t have to match the Chinese name on our translated single status certificates.

Has anyone had any experience with this matter that would be able to help clear this up? Thanks!

No, you can choose your Chinese names to be whatever you like. Just make sure you can write them for signing documents. You could even get a chop (stamp) with your name.

Great, thank you for confirming this! I am going to get a stamp made so I wanted to be sure I could choose my own name before doing getting the stamp. The direct translation of my English name from our single certificates would have been 7 characters so I’m glad they won’t require me to use that!