My ARC conundrum. Is it still valid? Am I on overstay?

I came back a week late from my holiday to Australia due to legal complications, and my boss at the last school dumped me. I got fired on the 27th of August but was supposed to start work on the 17th (the previous Monday).

Since then I have found a new job, started on the 1st of September and have been there since. I’m not happy there, but it’s a job and times are tough. I went to a terrible job interview on Saturday with people (much younger than me) lining up out the door. The school there was offering about 300 NT an hour and you had to travel around to 4 different places each day. :doh:

Anyhow - I need to know how to find what my ARC status is. My previous boss said something about leaving it until I found a new job - and then my new school could just ‘transfer’ it over.

But last week I went back t the old school ad they made me sign a ‘cancel contract’ form and the date on it was the 17th of August (the day that I wasn’t here to continue my teaching duties). If they sent it in last week, does the CLA take the date on the form or the date that the form was accepted as my ‘countdown date’?

What’s the worst that could happen? I’ve been reading stuff online and I think that I am screwed. I’ll have to leave Taiwan, pay a fine and then won’t be able to come back for a year - if at all.

Is there a phone number I can call and give them my ARC number and find out the status of my ARC and how long I have to get my new work permit processed?

I did a health check for the new gig last week - get the results this Thursday (24 September) so the new school is going through the motions of getting me an ARC.

I think you should be able to get an extension on your ARC while the new ARC is being processed, if the docs have been handed in to the CLA then you/the school should have got a reciept from them.
Usually you just go and show the NIA this and they will give you a two week extension.
The old ARC shouldn’t be a problem, just stick to the ‘only-give-minimal-information-to-the-NIA’ rule, ie do not go in and tell them your old school ‘kept the visa open’.
Just go in with your old ARC and the reciept and ask for an extension.
The NIA won’t have the cancel contract from, the CLA has it. Assuming that the CLA allows your work permit to be processed then it shouldn’t be an issue, however you do need to get in to the NIA double quick, the CLA can sometimes process the paperwork really fast, and your aim is to get an extension on your ARC before the CLA actually processes the papers.
I would guess that provided the CLA allows your new permit you’ll be fine, In fairness, you weren’t even in the country on Aug 17, so it clear that this is something which has been resolved after some negotiation on both sides.
Even if the CLA turns down the work permit, if you’ve been in to the NIA an got an extension then you won’t have overstayed. Of course it would suck, but you won’t be left with fines etc.

What is NIA? Is that National Immigration Authority? Do they have offices in Miaoli?
My boss hasn’t started applying for my new work permit until I get the health check results (on 24 September).
I’ll ask around if there is an NIA office in Miaoli and go there today. Thanks kitkat

[quote=“pubba”]What is NIA? Is that National Immigration Authority? Do they have offices in Miaoli?
My boss hasn’t started applying for my new work permit until I get the health check results (on 24 September).
I’ll ask around if there is an NIA office in Miaoli and go there today. Thanks kitkat[/quote]
Yes, the NIA (National Immigration Agency) has an office in Miaoli:
No. 6, Ln. 1297, Zhongzheng Rd., Miaoli
苗栗縣苗栗市中正路1297巷6號

tel. (037) 322-350

BTW, it might help to mention your family situation in your explanation. That sort of thing can go a long way here, depending on who’s behind the desk that day.

Good luck.

Thanks cranky :slight_smile:

I had a shocking migraine today - ended up needing an injection at hospital to get it under control. No surprise, I had to work anyway. I just kept running to the bathroom to throw up every now and then :s

I did call my previous school. My supervisor was ‘in a meeting’ which is their way of saying ‘don’t bother me’. I think they forget that I used to work there, because it was a running joke how often she used to use that line to avoid calls…

My new boss is going to call tomorrow and find out what’s going on, but I think I might go in to the office myself.

[quote=“pubba”]Thanks cranky :slight_smile:

I had a shocking migraine today - ended up needing an injection at hospital to get it under control. No surprise, I had to work anyway. I just kept running to the bathroom to throw up every now and then :s

I did call my previous school. My supervisor was ‘in a meeting’ which is their way of saying ‘don’t bother me’. I think they forget that I used to work there, because it was a running joke how often she used to use that line to avoid calls…

My new boss is going to call tomorrow and find out what’s going on, but I think I might go in to the office myself.[/quote]

I wouldn’t go into the office. And I would not explain my problem unless I had left all my ID at home. From the sounds of it, you have overstayed. Let your school proceed with the paperwork and use their guanxi to make sure your case is not recorded anywhere. Once your case is recorded on a file you are screwed and all the guanxi in the world cannot help. I know this from personal experience. Much can be done before a case gets a file. Not so much after.

You really aren’t in a position to help yourself so don’t try. Let others handle this. If you have overstayed you have overstayed and you won’t change that fact by going to the office. However, if there is a way out of this your school is in the better position to find that way.

I can’t see how asking a lot of questions at the NIA is going to help. Call or get someone to call for you if you must.

Actually Pubba, as your new school hasn’t put in the paperwork yet then I second Mucha Man.

Stay away from the NIA, by yourself at least.

Make sure your new boss insists on speaking to your old boss ASAP.
Explain to your new boss that if the old school have filed the paperwork for you leaving already that there may be a problem. Try to get the exact date it was filed (find out if it was posted, that gives you an extra day breathing space)
However since the cancellation papers only went in last week, you probably haven’t overstayed yet. The CLA takes the cancellation and then notifies the NIA who then cancel your ARC.

At least that is my understanding of the situation.

Now your new school obviously wants you, so it should be easy to persuade them to perhaps request an extension for you. It may be the case that they can simply go in with you and explain you are waiting for the healthcheck report, due on Thursday, and that they will file for the request for your new work permit on Thursday. If this is done in person, the receipt you need for your extension can be filed the same day with the NIA.

However you do need to calmly express to your boss that this is something that needs to be sorted out ASAP.
The last thing any of you needs is fines and overstaying and all that palava, but it sounds like your old school isn’t trying to screw you up, sometimes people just really get the trickiness of visas and residence permits, simply because they have never been in that situation themselves, and might inadvertently land you in it, as it were.

Even if your ARC has somehow been cancelled, you should have had a notice in the post, is your recorded address the correct one? (with the NIA). Its not 100% reliable, but if there’s nothing there, you’re probably good.

But seriously with the times involved for the paperwork, old School - CLA- NIA, you’re probably alright. And if you’re out by only a couple of days I think that they might let you just pay a NT$2000 fine, no exit needed, although I am not 100% sure.

The main thing is to establish what the old school has done with the cancel contract from, and when. And do bear in mind that they can get fined heavily for keeping your visa ‘open’, so play nicely.

Best of luck

Poor Pubba with his continuing saga in Taiwan. To think this “to be or not to be in Taiwan conundrum” could get solved for him by his overstay. Hmmm. Where would P.Pubba (poor Pubba) go if he is banned for a year from Taiwan? Thailand most likely? Philippines? Japan? Korea? Vietnam? Cambodia? Perhaps through all this there is a silver lining?

Best of luck Pubba and may the paperwork of good fortune be with you.

VERY good advice, and thank you very much, guys.

I finally got a co teacher to call for me today. The NIA said that in their system, my ARC expires next year. Nothing on file about a contract cancellation.

She then called my previous school and they said they sent in the form ‘last week sometime’.

So am I off the hook? Will the 2 week ‘GTFO’ period start on the day they receive this cancellation form?

Anyhow, it turns out that the boss doesn’t like me. I had a flu last week (along with 90% of the students) and a migraine yesterday (but I still worked anyway).

Apparently I’m sick ‘all the time’. So I said to her offsider (the boss was away today) that I need a definite answer ASAP. Will they hire me or not? Maybe this is a blessing in disguise. The school is crappy, the boss is patronizing and the kids are allowed to run amuck.

[quote=“tommy525”]Poor Pubba with his continuing saga in Taiwan. To think this “to be or not to be in Taiwan conundrum” could get solved for him by his overstay. Hmmm. Where would P.Pubba (poor Pubba) go if he is banned for a year from Taiwan? Thailand most likely? Philippines? Japan? Korea? Vietnam? Cambodia? Perhaps through all this there is a silver lining?

Best of luck Pubba and may the paperwork of good fortune be with you.[/quote]

Thailand is at the very top of my list. I figure that I would rather be poor and happy as opposed to well off and miserable. I have some friends in Thailand and they keep bugging me to make the move.

It’s hard to get English teaching work in the Philippines, but I would love to give it a try. I have a Canuck friend here in Miaoli that used to teach in Cebu. Sounded fantastic.

I would LOVE to work in Japan but I’m too old and fugly. All the applications that I make either get rejected or ignored…

Korea - not really interested.

Vietnam - possibility. Would love to go there for a holiday and check it out. Have heard good things.

Cambodia is almost on my list, but it sounds a bit ‘wild west’ there. Ganja, guns and girls. Sometimes a mixture of all 3 :laughing: :thumbsup:

Got the health check results today and the new boss has submitted my work permit application. Now, the waiting game…

It could still take 10 days for the CLA to process your work permit request.
Just to be safe I’d pop down to the NIA with a copy of the receipt for you work permit application, saying you’re switching schools (no need for further details,employers/employees have a probation period, there is nothing unusual about your switch), and although your ARC is still valid you want to make sure the NIA know that the new work permit is being processed.
They’ll probably just make a note on your file. Assuming the new permit goes through you should be fine. And should the ARC cancellation instruction come through in the meantime the NIA will know to ignore it.

Best of luck,

Kitkat

The OP just left Taiwan and returned from Australia…

Asking the NIA is the best place to start as they actually know the law

The only problem being that the first school keeping his permit open may put him on shaky ground legally, no need to land oneself in it if it can be avoided. Or the school for that matter. They could get whacked with a big fine.

The OP just left Taiwan and returned from Australia…

Asking the NIA is the best place to start as they actually know the law[/quote]

My advise is to get someone else to ask the questions and also confirm the answers.

Pubba wants clear answers but he doesn’t want his situation to attract any attention at this point. That should be obvious.

As for the NIA knowing the law, well, no they don’t always and I was expelled for 14 months once because of being told the wrong things. I was married too and had a JFRV in my passport. Just didn’t renew my ARC as I was assured it was not necessary and I had no further steps to fulfill. This was confirmed in English and Chinese.

I was told my NIA that since i wanted to change schools where i study chinese, i could simply do a visa run and get a visitor 60 day visa, then change it to a student one when i arrived in taiwan and paid my tuition at the school i wanted to go to.

WRONG… :fume: first, the overseas office didnt even want to issue me a 60 day visa, i had to get a friend in tw to fax them a letter advising i was visiting friends.
They issued the visitor visa reluctantly, then when i returned to TW, they said that i couldnt change the visitor visa to student, were sorry, too bad.

So yea, to second Muzha mans comment, not everyone there knows the law, the consulates overseas also dont know, and depending who you get on the other side of the desk is the answer you will receive… so be nice :bow:

Oh damn… That is a bit worrying re: the last few posts.

My new school called last week and the NIA said that the expiry date for my ARC hasn’t changed. Ie: They haven’t received the cancellation form from my previous school yet.

The cancellation form was sent 2 weeks ago now, and my previous school is refusing to return my calls. Funny how my supervisor is constantly in meetings whenever I call… :fume:

I just found out today that my new boss hasn’t sent my work permit application in yet! I gave her my paperwork and health check result last THURSDAY morning.

Thankfully I may have a new job starting on the 1st of November at a decent school in Hsin Chu.

If they give me a job offer, can I cancel my own ARC and leave Taiwan, apply for 60 day visa outside Taiwan and then come back just before the new gig starts?

Well the shit really hit the proverbial today…

I called my old school and they said that that didn’t send in the contract cancellation form earlier because they had to ‘create some documents’. Does anyone know what this might mean? Fake tax receipt? Remember, I finished working there on the 17th of August… but the ARC has just been cancelled now, over a month later.

They were supposed to call my new school when they sent in the cancellation form, but didn’t. So now I have 12 days to get out of Taiwan, is that right? (The office would have received the cancellation form on Tuesday just gone).

So, I thought it would be ok because my boss sent in a work permit request. I figured that they could just issue a new ARC while I’m still here.

I asked my boss and she said that she hasn’t sent the work permit request in yet! It’s sitting right on her desk, along with the ‘contract’ that is two paragraphs long. It just states the hourly rate, and the dates that I would be working (1 October 09 to 31 September '10).

Apparently I haven’t been working hard enough, and she doesn’t think I will stay for a full year. I wish she had said this a few weeks ago, and I would have found a new job.

Luckily I have a demo for a job that starts on the 1st of November. But the demo is Monday the 5th October. Even if they make a decision on the spot and then miraculously can submit the work permit the next day, I’m not going to have enough time. My D day is Monday 12 October.

So my big question is - should I leave now, get a 60 day visa outside Taiwan and come back in on that?

Or should I wait for the demo, and ask them to apply ASAP for the work permit? The school seems very organized and this may be a possibility.

Go to NIA, show them a contract and get a 30 day extension. As long as you have a contract, they should grant it.

pubba, I feel for you. Do you have a good taiwanese friend who can go with you to help explain your situation?

I suggest you call your old school again, and record the conversation. Then talk to your boss and record that. Go to NIA and throw yourself at their mercy. Your case is so unusual I don’t know what to say.