[quote=“StuartCa”]I have a JFRV and was wondering if there is any point in changing to an APRC.
I’m not about to divorce, but I have children and we own our own house (in my wife’s name).
Should the worst happen to my wife, would an APRC give me more legal rights regarding the house and the kids would I be legally entitled to her assets/debts.
My current understanding is that with a JFRV if I became a widower I would be up the creek without a paddle and would have to leave the country and have no recourse to our property, or other monies, I don’t know about guardianship of the kids.
I did a brief search but didn’t turn up much.
Also - can you write a Will here?[/quote]
Sorry guys, I just noticed this; I don’t get down to this end of the forum much anymore.
I was on a JFRV at the time that I lost my wife and was allowed to renew it twice for one year each time after she passed. It was never explicitly stated whether this was protocol or whether they were just letting me slide; I just went in, made the applications and they processed them both times without question. I knew and had all the paper work that was needed and our household registry very clearly stated the date of her death, so I tend to think it was some kind of unwritten protocol, though I have heard of cases where spouses were made to leave once their visas expired. We had been married three and a half years at the time of her death and I was under the assumption that I needed five full years on a JFRV or seven consecutive years (it was seven at that time and I had five and a bit) on work based ARCs. I was a bit confused at the time that I finally went to process my APRC because the agent pointed out that I could have applied some years before based on my record of entry/exit and the visas I had held…no idea how he figure that, but I didn’t look to question anything, since my APRC was pretty much a lock based on the qualifications I applied with. I guess for hard and fast answers, you are best off to consult the NIA directly.
As for the financial part, I was considered the direct inheritor of all assets we acquired while married. This included her bank accounts and any insurance policies on which I was named as the beneficiary. We had (I had, but in her name) bought a car and a house together, and there was about six years left on a ten year mortgage. Her father would apparently have had some right to claim half of that since we purchased it a little before we were married, but as per the instructions in her handwritten will, which is apparently a valid document in Taiwan, all assets we acquired and purchased together were to go to me. I hired a Dai Su, a kind of notary public, to help me probate everything and there was a small amount of money, I think something like $40-50k, paid from me to the father to settle any claims that he could have had to the assets. As to the will, I have no idea if it would have held up if anyone had seriously decided to question the way the estate was being probated. I do know that once I showed it to her family and the arrangements that my wife had made for them with insurance and such, any question of contesting it was quashed.
That was my experience. I can say that I felt very fortunate to have a good friend that works for a very powerful lawfirm here in Taiwan to point me in the direction of one of the partner’s at her firm to help me along with the whole thing. I don’t really feel as though I can give any hard or fast answers as to what the exact rules are regarding wills and such, since I wasn’t really in any kind of state of mind to pay much attention to all of that stuff at the time. One thing that I have to say is that the agents at the NIA and all the many other government/financial offices that I dealt with were all very professional and sensitive to the fact that I was a big mess emotionally from the whole thing.
If you have any question about any of this, I’ll check back here from time to time. I think pretty much everything I had to offer was posted in that thread that was linked to above, but I try to help with any questions here again. One thing that has apparently changed over the years is that joint ownership of property (houses) is apparently now permitted. If your house is paid off or if the mortgage is in both of your names, I would look at getting your name on the deeds, as well. I doubt there would be much contest to the kids, since you are obviously their biological father.