Marriage resident visa in passport, still waiting for ARC card, can I work?

I just got my resident visa based on marriage, as a big sticker in my passport. It says I have to apply for an ARC within 15 days, which I plan to do on Monday. My question is, since my visa is already processed and I am technically a Taiwan resident now, can I work, or must I wait for the ARC card?


Visa and ARC are different. What the law says is you need an ARC to work without a work permit.

To be precise, that’s not exactly what it says, but as far as we know that’s what it means.

Note to anyone reading this who doesn’t understand the context: we’re talking about a marriage-based ARC, not any other kind of ARC. Normally, a work permit is what permits a foreigner to work, not an ARC.

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I thought the marriage-based residency in and of itself was what gives foreign spouses working rights. Which means, if you entered Taiwan on a marriage-based residency visa, as soon as you pass through customs you have the right to work in Taiwan.

No. Iirc, the law says spouses of Taiwanese citizens don’t need a work permit when they have ARCs.


I will apply for my ARC on monday, although I’ve heard it takes 10 working days for them to make your card, which concerns me as I am supposed to start my new job on August 1st. I wonder, if I have the marriage based residence visa, and have applied for my ARC, but am still waiting for it to be made if the rules are different. It’s not like I’m waiting for any government agency to accept my request, as I’ve already been granted residency based on my marriage to a Taiwanese citizen.

On another note, does anyone know if the immigration office has an express service for getting the ARC card? It would pretty much solve my issue.

You have no issue. Apply for your ARC card like normal, turn up to work on Monday, pick up the card when it’s ready. You’ll be fine, like hundreds/thousands before you.

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You shouldn’t recommend an illegal thing, if OP’s case were illegal.

Though, I checked the law, and it is different from what I remembered. Now I think what you said is right.

Article 48
2. A foreign worker has married a national of the Republic of China with a registered permanent residence in the Republic of China and has been permitted to stay therein.

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Can you send me a link to that law?

Bare in mind that I am not technically a permanent resident though, as I will have an ARC based on marriage, not an APRC.

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You don’t need to have an APRC.
If you have an APRC, you don’t need to be a spouse of a citizen. You can get an open work permit.

Thank you. This is interesting.

When it says “married a national of the Republic of China with a registered permanent residence in the Republic of China”, does it mean that the Republic of China spouse must have have a registered permanent residence in the ROC, or the foreigner? Because if it means the Republic of China spouse, then according to that law, a visa or ARC isn’t required at all, which can’t be right.

There are two kinds of nationals of ROC, with and without a registered permanent residence.

It means a taiwanese who has a household registration.

A foreigner who has married “a national of ROC without a household registration” needs a work permit.

Some idiot doing the translations on the MOJ website decided to muck them up with some editorial judgment, rendering the English versions unusable.

有戶籍國民 should be (and was at one time) translated as “national with household registration” and not “national with registered permanent residence”. The term permanent residence (永久性居留) usually refers to foreigners not subject to a condition of stay.

Yes that was what was confusing me. So am I correct in thinking that the Chinese version:

外國人與在中華民國境內設有戶籍之國民結婚,且獲准居留者。 Actually means:

Foreign worker has married a national of the Republic of China with household registration in the Republic of China and has been permitted to stay therein?

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I guess the translator might have confused it somehow with PRC’s system.

This is the key to the question of whether a foreign spouse needs an ARC or just a resident visa.

Hsinhai is usually right about legal issues, so I’ll go with his interpretation until I see evidence to the contrary.

That’s correct. Now I need to write a letter to them to stop this ridiculousness.

Somewhere in one of the laws posted on there they decided to translate 大陸地區人民 “person of the Mainland Area” to “Mainland Chinese citizen.” Elsewhere they translated 中華民國國民 to Republic of China citizen instead of Republic of China national. This is sloppy. Legally speaking, citizen, national, and resident all mean different things. The Nationality Act contains no provision of citizenship but only nationality; the basket of rights associated with citizenship are only given to people with household registration.

Article 22 of Immigration Act says
“An alien who possesses a valid passport with a valid visa, a valid passport without a visa, or a valid travel document, shall acquire the right to stay or reside after having been inspected by National Immigration Agency, and allowed to enter the State.
An alien who acquires the permission to stay in the State pursuant to the preceding Paragraph shall apply to National Immigration Agency for an Alien Resident Certificate within fifteen (15) days after the date of the entry.

I think it could be read that a foreigner who entered in Taiwan using a visa has been permitted to stay or reside already, and who has gotten a permission to reside should apply for an ARC within 15 days.

My comprehension of both of English and Chinese is questionable, though.

It equates a visa with (取得) 許可, (obtaining) permission, but not with 獲准, which could also be translated as obtaining permission but is clearly not the same term.

I agree there’s plenty of sloppy work in the English versions in general, but specifically wrt the citizen vs. national issue, it depends on which country we’re talking about. Sometimes they’re interchangeable, and sometimes they’re not.

(Don’t get me started on employee vs. worker!)

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