Moving family to Taiwan and Applying for Household Registration


Thank you @tando for reminding me of that law/article.

I called 4 places tonight: TECO Atlanta, 僑委會 Overseas Community Affairs Council (OCAC), Dept. of Household Registration 內政部-戶政司, and National Immigration Agency (NIA) 內政部-移民署…long night

Overall Steps:

  1. Apply for a TW passport at your local TECO office and get a visa in your newly minted TW passport so that you can enter into TW on it.
  2. Upon arrival, immediately apply for 戶籍 Household Registration and your TARC/ARC 居留證.
  3. Hopefully you can get that back within 15 days, so that you can apply for your family members and hopefully they will be able to change their visa into a JFRC (which is essentially a family based ARC)

You will need to apply for HHR/TARC:

  1. Parent’s TW Passport copies
  2. Parent’s Marriage needs to be registered in TW and get a copy of the “certificate” 謄本 from TW
    Your Birth Certificate authenticated at TECO (then officially translated in TW)
  3. FBI Report authenticated by TECO DC (only TECO DC can do background checks, and then officially translated in TW?)
  4. 2 photos
  5. Health Exam done in TW
  6. $1000 NT

Your foreign spouse will need for JFRC/ARC:

  1. FBI background check authenticated at TECO DC (only TECO DC can do background checks, and then officially translated in TW?)
  2. Medical exam in TW
  3. Marriage certificate authenticated at TECO (then officially translated in TW)
  4. Your TARC
  5. 1000 NT dollars
  6. Photos (I think 2)
  7. Official Visa from TECO (停留簽證, I think). because you can’t change from a landing visa to a ARC per NIA

Your children will need for JFRC/ARC

  1. Vaccine/Immunization record authenticated at TECO (I believe)
  2. Birth certificate authenticated at TECO (then officially translated in TW)
  3. No Marriage Certificate
  4. No FBI Background check necessary
  5. 1000 NT dollars?
  6. Photos (I think 2)
  7. Medical Exam (I think)
  8. Official Visa from TECO (停留簽證, I think). because you can’t change from a landing visa to a ARC according to NIA

Conscription via Overseas Community Affairs Council:

  1. There is NO conscription enlistment until you have established 戶籍 Household Registration HHR.
  2. Thus, after I get HHR, which will most likely be in 2 years by staying over 270 days for 2 years my days will start counting for the draft as tando kindly quoted again above: since I am born after 1984, If I stay in TW longer than 183 days per calendar year for two years, I will be subject to the draft AFTER I obtain HHR.
  3. Since I will be 37 by the time 2 years + 183 days rolls around, I should be good. Now where do I go when I turn 37 to make sure I’m off the conscription list? My local HHR office?

It’s late and I wanted to write this up before I forget. Will edit/update later.


Your local HHR office will have a conscription division…

they will know about that one.


Another thing, do you already have an ID number in your passport?

If you have that, you only need your TW passport to enter Taiwan, nothing else.

ROC passport without ID number isn’t even worth the paper it’s printed on, you couldn’t even travel visa free to most countries if it doesn’t have one…


Beacause foreign nationals are not tied to a local household registration, they therefor dont have one. One such arena i ran into was i could be part of the farmers coops and have farmers health insurance. When i got my aprc i lost it all. I went all over trying to get it back to which they just say impossible…and we are all on good terms.

Im not sure but this makes me wonder if it also affects the restricted fields for foreigners to open a business. Because im in forestry, agriculture and breeding, my wife opened a new company for convenience.

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I don’t even have my passport yet, will be applying in the next couple of days. So initially I won’t have an ID number in my passport until I meet the 365 days straight in TW, 270 days per year for 2 years, or 183 days per year in 3 years requirement. Only then can I apply for HHR and then my National ID card.

Makes sense that its worth pretty much nothing, since I even have to get a 入台證 visa to even enter Taiwan on it…hahaha


Wow, that’s very upsetting especially if you are a long time resident.

In your case, can’t you have your name in the Household Registration aside your wife’s name?


Its a long story, short answer: no. Long answer: maybe i need to ask again in my new situation. But previously its was a flat no.

This isnt legal advice, but very real life experience advice. Though most of the protected job types not many foreigners will be doing, so my thoughts on this might not be super relavent to most. But very problematic if its your life or planning to do this. Having a local you trust gets you out of trouble sometimes but its insanely difficult and risky if a person doesnt have that person!! I know cause ive lost all once already, and it really really sucks. So play the game wisely.

Just be smart and think with your big head. Even if totally setup long term, dont let hormones rule the day. Lots of opportunity here with amazing people, but be diligent and thorough in your thinking.


Here is a wrap up of what I’ve found up so far. I am still gathering documents and haven’t sent it all the TECO but I feel fairly confident that I got all my questions answered to this point. We will see how smoothly it goes once I send everything to TECO and then goto Taiwan.

I hope this helps other people in the future. So I’ll start this “guide” over from scratch.


  1. TW = Taiwan
  2. 戶籍 = Huji

My circumstances:

  1. Parents are both born in TW and both hold TW Passports.
  2. Parents initially got married in the US, but then registered the marriage at their local 戶籍 office in TW.
  3. I was born in 1985 (民國74), so at the time of this article in 2019, I will be turning 34 in 2019.
  4. I married an immigrant in the US, who is now a US citizen and holds a US passport.
  5. I have a baby with a US passport.
  6. I have not gotten a TW passport yet ever.

My Steps:

  1. Apply for a TW passport, you will need:
    -US Passport
    -Copy of your Driver License
    -Letter stating that your parents agree that you will use your fathers/mothers Chinese last name as your last name (TECO has a template you can use)
    -TW Passport Application Form
    -入台證 Application Form. Essentially a VISA that goes in your new TW passport that ALLOWS you to enter into TW on it.
    -Marriage certificate from your parent’s 戶籍 office in TW stating that they are in fact married.
    -4 passport sized photos (see TECO specs on this, they are super specific)
    -$45 USD

  2. Apply for Visitor Visas for my spouse and child
    -If you arrive on a landing visa, TECO states that you cannot change from a landing visa to any other type of visa. So in order for my spouse and child to get an ARC (JFRC) they need to get a visitor visa so that they can then apply and get an ARC without leaving and coming back in.
    -The lady at TECO ATL said that because I was applying for my TW passport that I didn’t need to provide an invitation letter or an airline itinerary to apply for the visitor visas for my family.
    -$160 USD

  3. Get documents from respective authorities in the US and have all of them authenticated by your local TECO office.
    -FBI Background Check (for me and my spouse, this can ONLY be authenticated by TECO DC. This is needed to get your ARC in TW)
    -My Marriage certificate (needed to get your child’s ARC/JFRV in TW)
    -My child’s birth certificate (needed to get your child’s ARC/JFRV in TW)
    -My child’s immunization record (this is probably needed to get my child’s ARC/JFRV)
    -$15 USD per document

  4. Goto TW and Bring to TW:
    -FBI Background Check (authenticated by TECO DC)
    -Birth Certificate (authenticated by TECO)
    -Parents Marriage 戶籍謄本 (that you submitted to TECO)

Upon Arrival in TW:
4. Get this done
-Health Exam at a designated hospital
-2 passport photos per person
-1,000 NT
-Register at your local 戶籍 offic?
-Go get your Resident Certificate (forgot where, I think it was 內政部 戶政司or移民署?)
-After I get my Resident Certificate, I can then apply for my family’s Resident Certificate’s (ARC/JFRV)

-I need to stay in TW for 365 days in a row, at least 270 days per year for 2 years, or at least 183 days for 3 years in order to get Household Registration and then my 身份證 ID card. Day one of this count starts on the first day you get your resident ARC card.
-Per Overseas Affairs Commission (僑委會), I can’t be drafted without Household Registration.
-Once I achieve Household Registration, I need to have stayed in TW for over 183 days in a row to be drafted. If I plan to leave before 183 days I won’t be allowed unless I get some approval from my local Huji 戶籍 Office and possibly something else.
-On the year you turn 37, according to my birth year of 1985, I will no longer be subject to the draft.
-I’m not that worried about the draft because I am currently 34, and it will take me at least 2 years (2 years of staying at least 270 days in TW) in order for me to get my household registration. Once I get it, I need to wait 183 days before I can get drafted. By that time I’ll already be 37.

Things I need to figure out:
-Do I need to file something with somewhere when I turn 37 so I won’t be auto drafted into the military?
-Where is what department and where do I go first once I arrive in TW?

I will do my best to update this as I get going in the process. I still have another 2-3 months before I arrive.

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Does anyone know if I can get birth certificates, marriage certificates, and other documents translated and notarized in Taiwan? TECO is saying that I can do it in Taiwan (probably so they don’t have to deal with it).


You can use any translator and have the translation certified in Taiwan.

If you need to have the original document certified or notarized first, it may be easier to do that in the country where it was issued.


they know how old you are, so when you become 37, you are automatically dropped from their draftees list. Me think.


ok, sounds good. Will get my docs authenticated by TECO first and bring them to TW for translation. Thanks!


even better!


I would recommend doing that. They might refuse to do some documents or say you need a different version (e.g. long form birth/death certificate vs. short form). Check their website for the details.


I’m currently trying to do the same/similar thing and am still figuring out the process.

If you already plan to pass your documents through TECO, couldn’t you include the translations and save the additional step in TW? That’s how I did it. (my parents did the translating) You end up with both versions together under a stamped cover letter. Maybe each TECO is different - we were in the zone covered by DC.

So far I haven’t run into any problems but I haven’t applied for the TARC yet.


Well, of all the TECO offices I’ve dealt with so far (Houston, Atlanta, and DC) the ones who are supposed to authenticate my translations (Houston and Atlanta) are forever trying to push that responsibility to someone else. I’m tired of arguing with someone about what they should/are supposed to do as a service (and getting paid). Only the DC office was the nicest and most professional I’ve dealt with so far. Wish I were under their jurisdiction.