My mother is NWHOR with supporting documents but her application TARC AF384 was refused by NIA

Hello to all,

This forum has been a great help for many people and I hope some of you will read my case. I will be thankful for any information or advice you will provide me.

My name is Jean-Yves and I’m a NWOHR (無戶籍國民) born in Madagascar. My native language is French so I’m sorry if I cannot express myself well.

My mother and myself have the Taiwan Passport for NWOHR. Like many NWOHR’s we came to Taiwan with the 90-days entry/exit permit and we hoped to apply for the TARC, stay 1 year and then ask for the full citizenship.

My mother was born also in Madagascar and her parents already passed away. My grandparents don’t have HHR in Taiwan and we cannot get in touch with our distant family here.

We were confident to be able to apply for the TARC since we brought with us many supporting documents:

  • Taiwanese nationality certificates of my grandparents (which prove they never gave up their Taiwan Nationality)

  • Marriage certificate of my grandparents

  • Death certificates of my grandparents

  • Taiwan NWOHR passport of my grandfather

  • Birth certificate

  • Criminal record

All these documents have been authenticated by TECO in South Africa (in charge of the area including Madagascar)

However, this morning my mother went to the NIA to apply for the TARC AF384 but her application was refused. They said since her parents don’t have the HHR in Taiwan now or at that time she cannot apply for the TARC. I read in other post that the law was revised and some people in the same case like us were able to apply for the TARC so I’m quite confused.

If someone in the same situation like us succeeded to apply for the TARC, please let me know your testimony. That’s will be such a great help for us to show to the NIA that we are indeed eligible and challenge their refusal.

I’m considering also to hire an immigration lawyer to help us defend our rights. If you know any good lawyer don’t hesitate to tell me.

Thank you for your kindness and support.


I hope someone else answers this, because I don’t live in Taiwan and I don’t have any experience with this myself. My only limited knowledge comes from some questions I asked a couple of years ago here on the forum, at Eligibility for NWOHR passport+TARC if no active household registration at time of birth .

First, a question about your case. You said:

What exactly do you mean by “at that time”? Did your grandparents ever have an active HHR?

Anyway, about your case, I think that I understood the following:

  1. Parents of mother had HHR in the past (did I understand right?)
  2. Parents of mother deactivated HHR before mother’s birth (did I understand right?)
  3. Mother was born to Taiwanese parents without HHR at time of birth (did I understand right?)
  4. Mother has NWOHR passport
  5. Mother now applied for TARC under AF384
  6. NIA says that due to #2 and #3, mother does not qualify under AF384

However, I asked this specific question earlier:

Can anyone point to evidence that an inactive HHR at time of birth can be used / has successfully been used for an AF384-based TARC?
Eligibility for NWOHR passport+TARC if no active household registration at time of birth - #71 by Hayashi

To which @multipass answered:

I don’t think I have evidence handy, but I do believe I’ve heard of this case succeeding.
Eligibility for NWOHR passport+TARC if no active household registration at time of birth - #72 by multipass

As for an immigration laywer, there was an old link given by @tando here, but unfortunately it seems no longer to be active:

You maybe can try searching on the web using some keywords as @tando described here: Recommendation for company that can do my Taiwanese passport paperwork - #4 by tando . It looks like most companies who can help in this matter will require the communication to be done in Chinese.

I wish you luck and hope you will share any information you can find out about how to proceed.

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Here’s another link I found which seems to contain a good summary: Taiwanese Parents

AF384 is for NWOHRs over 20 years old who were born overseas, but whose parents have or had household registration in Taiwan. Usually used when the household registration has lapsed and/or parents are deceased, otherwise AF353 may be more straightforward. You’ll need a certified Chinese translation of your birth certificate, a copy of your parents marriage registration, as well as copies of your parent’s Taiwan ID cards and the original 戶口名簿 and a copy. If your parents weren’t married when you were born, there are workarounds but it’s best to ask your local embassy.

So again, the key question at this point it is: did your mother’s parents ever have an active HHR in the past? If yes, then AF384 seems to apply. If not, then maybe your mother cannot use AF384.

Hi Hayashi,

Thank you for taking the time to read my post and reply to me.

You are right, the core issue is wether or not my grandparents had an active HHR in the past. Since they never lived in Taiwan, I assume they never got an active HHR. However, my great-grandparents must have an HHR from the Republic of China since they were born in the 1910’s, got married in the 1930’s and then left the Republic of China because of the war period. I say Republic of China because at that time Taiwan was colonized by Japan.
My family kept intact a very old document, the free travel passes both in Chinese and English delivered by the Commissioner of Public Safety of Canton dated from 14th July 1936. The name of my great grandparents are mentionned in this official document and I will do a request at the Household registration of one District in Taipei to search for the HHR of my family at that time.

This is my last hope and I sincerely hope they kept the HHR record of my family. I will keep you updated about the progress regarding my case.

If your grandparents never lived in Taiwan, then I think you are right, they probably never got an active HHR. Unfortunately, I think AF384 only applies to children of a national who has or had an active HHR in the past. If your grandparents (parents of your mother) did not ever have an active HHR, then your mother is the child of an NWOHR, not a child of a national with HHR. And as far as I can remember, I don’t think I saw any discussion here about any cases where a child of an NWOHR can apply for a TARC under AF384.

Under the logic of AF384, I think the required sequence of applications would be:

  1. Great-grandparents had HHR in the past.
  2. Grandparents, because they are children of #1 who had HHR, can apply under AF384 for TARC and get their own HHR.
  3. After grandparents succeed to get HHR, then their child (your mother) is now a child of (a direct blood relative of) a national with HHR. Their child (your mother) now belongs to the category of “有直系血親在臺灣地區設有戶籍者” (Those who have direct blood relatives with household registration in Taiwan) and can apply under AF353 for TARC and get her own HHR. Maybe AF384 also would also work here, because your mother is also now the child of a national with HHR – but maybe AF384 might not work if the NIA says the HHR of your mother’s parents must have existed before your mother’s birth; see Reddit - Dive into anything for related discussion, which says " This is the same situation that prevents me from getting my heritage citizenship, as my mother could apply now, but since she didn’t do it before I was born, I am ineligible no matter what as their jus sanguinis is restricted to a certain number of generations at the time of birth."
  4. After your mother succeeds to get HHR, then her child (you) is now again a child of a national with HHR. Her child (you) can apply under AF353 for TARC and get your own HHR.

What you are trying to do is skip step #2, and use #1 to support #3. In other words, your mother is the grandchild (not the direct child) of a national with HHR.

Unfortunately, I have not seen discussion here on the forum about this case. Furthermore, another discussion on reddit also implies it is not possible. See Reddit - Dive into anything which says:

question: would a NWOHR under age 20, with grandparents who have household registration (parents do not, are only NWOHR) be eligible to automatically register for household registration the same way children of NWHR do?

answer: None of the relevant laws mention grandparents, so my guess is no.

In order for you to succeed with AF384, I think that you would need to prove that the requirements for AF384 (相關證明文件一覽表.pdf), which says “居住臺灣地區設有戶籍國民在國外出生之子女,年齡在二十歲以上”, includes not only the direct child of a national with HHR, but also includes the grandchildren of a national with HHR. I really don’t know if that argument is valid or not – my Chinese sucks, but the presence of the word “出生” seems to mean AF384, interpreted literally, applies to children who are born directly to the national with HHR. In order to argue that this AF384 condition logically should include grandchildren as well, then I guess you would need to hire a specialist lawyer who could make that argument based on the spirit of the law and based on past case history (if there are any successful similar cases in the past).

A lawyer could also advise you about any other options you might have.

I’m sure that there are people here on the forum who know more about this than me. Would anyone else like to comment?

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Hi Tando,

Thank you for your information.

You are propably right about this:

It’s a pity neither my mother or I could apply for the TARC. W came all the way to Taiwan and spend so much money to authenticated our documents, all these efforts in vain.

For people in our situation, the NWHOR status is similar to a third rate citizen status. We are not foreigner but we are not citizen either. It’s a shame because there are lots of families like us back in Madagascar. I thought we could lead the way and help others but it’s a dead end. It’s bitter to see the population of Taiwan shrinking but they tighen the law for the NWHORs.

Anyway nothing we could do, again I would like to express my gratitude to you. Thank you for taking the time to reply to me.

Wish you well!

Jean Yves Randriamalala (陳健康)