Legal to work before recieving ARC?

I’m currently working for a well established school here in Taipei. I have been working there about five weeks now while my work permit and ARC are being processed. Is that legal?
The reason I ask is that the labor board has requested to see the original of my university degree which is, let’s just say, unavailable. The contract that I’ve signed states that “should I not complete the duration of the contract I will be fined $30,000nt.” That is just less than what they owe me and I’m really in need of that money right now. Should they decide not to pay me, can I threaten them with going to the authorities and reporting that I’ve been working there without a permit. I really hope it doesn’t come to that but I want to have as many arrows in the quiver as possible. Thanks for your time.

Use the search function. This topic is just about the hottest one on the board after, perhaps, opinions about whether Chen’s being shot before the last election was legitimate or not.

In a word, no, you are not legal to work. If you are playing cute when you say “unavailable” and saying that you do not have a university degree, then obviously you are in trouble either way. If it is a matter of your not having the original certificate, most unis will issue you a new one given a small financial incentive to the Registrar’s office.

As has been stated elsewhere, applying to join a club or get a work permit does not mean you will be allowed to join or given the permit, so obviously you are not okay to work before you have the final “yes”.