Tax Refund - Wait or Leave?

I’ve filed my taxes online and received a confirmation of successful submission. At the moment, I’m in a bit of a mess having lost a job and am holed up in a hostel. Sleeping in a “coffin” for a long period of time has been generally unhealthy for me and I recently had a perfectly good relationship come to an end because “parents”.

I’ve been looking for part-time work or really anything I can get my hands on. I’ve got an APRC and open work permit so staying in the country isn’t an issue, it’s the money. The last two years my tax refund came at the beginning of July and though they were not much to speak of it was nice to get them.

This year, my tax refund will be quite large because the school I was previously working for went back and ripped an additional 13% in taxes out from January to April because they did not know if I’d stay in the country. I’ve not stepped foot off the island for four years - and with taxes coming due, of course I would stay in country.

My question, having given the background is this: do I need to remain here to sit around waiting to collect a tax refund? or can I go home for a bit since it is set to direct desposit? Would this mean I’d have to show a round-trip ticket?

Yes. There are jobs opening up for the upcoming school year, but I’m growing quite unfond of teaching here. I’ve wasted seven years and not progressed. I’m an IT professional, not a teacher. I’m falling behind on technologies that I previously earned a salary from before coming here.

I guess I just don’t know what to do. There may be a job in Taichung, but I really strongly dislike it there. Also another in Kaohsiung… but I avoid Kaohsiung for the same reason I avoid Kaohsiung (ex). It’s in between school years so things are very thin. I can’t figure out why I’m even in Taiwan anymore. I’ve earned an APRC and to be honest, don’t really see much of a point. I can come and go as I please… but it seems like I’m mostly just stuck.

No you’ll still get your refund on direct deposit. Just check with the bank to ensure your international ATM withdrawal function is turned on and thst they have the latest copy of your aprc on file and then you can access the money at an ATM in the States. It will charge you about a $5 USD fee from the bank in Taiwan and usually a 2.5 to 3.5% conversion fee… but since this is not a massive amount it’s not a huge deal.

If you’re aprc is the professional kind you can now leave Taiwan for up to 5 years and return and keep it. So you can take a much needed break and decide later. Check with immigration to ensure your aprc qualifies for the 5 year exit.

Kaohsiung is a tough place to keep girlfriends as the deep south girls tend to be very obedient to parents, they typically don’t like their daughters dating foreigners, and she is probably scared of pissing them off by keeping you as they will turn the tap off the money on her as punishment. Taipei was so much easier in that aspect.

Oddly enough, this is precisely what occurred. She told me it was her decision before we started dating. Her grandfather died during this time… she started to become depressed, so I told her to go home. I was making preparations to go to Kaohsiung to help with her family.

Her family rejected me without even having met me… a lot of pain here. The tax refund is really the only thing keeping me here… and to be honest, I’ve had it with teaching. I used it as a vehicle to achieve permanent residency… but now that I have it, I don’t see the point.


OP: I hope you can take a break and get your mojo back.

As noted by Dan, your tax refund will be directly deposited into your account. You don’t physically need to be here for this to happen.

Look on the bright side: You are basically a free agent! With an APRC, you have resident rights now. This is great news!

You DON’T need to teach. You could try to reactivate/relearn/upgrade your IT credentials. There are opportunities here if you’re willing to seek them out, but you do need to be in the right “head space” for this to work for you.

Take care. We hope the best for you.


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I don’t really care to leave, but I am facing some very tough circumstances. There is a slim chance of returning to Taichung to teach… but then I’m back on the wheel. Doing something my heart isn’t into and eventually having to look for a job again.

I’ve done desktop support, phone/email support, field repair work for DELL, data center and NOC administration (Intuit and Microsoft), software testing, IT management, phone system administration, WordPress admin/design, instructional design, multimedia design and I’ve taught classes in computer technology.

For almost seven years, I’ve had a job feed coming into my email ( have seen so many jobs back in the states pass me by. I lost a PhD at dissertation and just feel a sense of loss being here. I don’t know what it even means to have resident rights. What can I do?

I’d like to have the feelings I had before leaving the US when I was a research assistant at UNLV… when I had colleagues who were pursuing the same dream. When I could come home after work… sit in the hot tub and enjoy a Newcastle (or three) beer.

Teaching does not challenge me to be better. In fact, I’ve found it hard to believe that so many teachers I’ve met lack the basic skills in Excel to design a grade book. At the last job, I redesigned the grade book for the school. Complete with weighted scores, conditional formatting for failing students, ranking for top three and bottom three students, counts of failing/passing students and averages for each (respectively).

It astounded me that nobody knew how to do this. Not that I am any “prize pig”, but these things can be picked up fairly quickly if one uses the tools (Google + brain) at their disposal. I even had to show others how to remote into the school computers to access or upload data to the shared directory using Google Remote.

I had numerous comments that I should be doing IT for the school… and this has happened more than once. I’ve done custom animations for PowerPoint, I use Articulate Storyline to design CBT’s, I can do a bit of programming, and I can customize blocks of code to meet my needs. I am not an expert software developer, but I can read LUA and Javascript to find/understand how the code works.

With hardware, I’m not too shabby either. When doing field. repair work for DELL I could disassemble and install new motherboards on six laptops (due to counter space) at the same time. Teaching was something I took up as a substitute to fill the gaps between contracts… and it has been something I have used as a vehicle to get my APRC. But I still don’t know what that means.

I know I can get a credit card on my own standing, but what else does it mean? Going back home sounds good on paper… but to really get off to a decent start I’d have to save a lot of money. My biggest quandary comes from a lack of income at the moment. It’s the “in between time”. Presently, I’m stuck in a hostel barely surviving and don’t have an abundance of friends who can or will help out. My family is in an imposition given that my father is on permanent disability and my mother doesn’t work… because she takes care of him. I hate borrowing from people… I truly despise it, but what can I do.

Neither the ex-wife nor the ex-GF did a lot to help get me onto a job board (Chinese) or translate my resume. Not that it was their duty to do so, but it sure as hell would have helped. I suppose I could go to the to the Employment Bureau and apply for the subsidy for unemployed foreigners… but I’d really like to do this on my own two.

Going to Taichung was a terrifying experience… I know Taipei well and feel safe here. I’d imagine going back home after seven years would be the same. While it might be the US, it would be a shock that would be diffict to cope with.

Mostly, I feel a lack of confidence in myself. I know I wasn’t a great husband… but I was a damned good boyfriend to this woman. To the point that she commented on it even as she left me. But none of that really matters. My “mojo” is missing and it seems each year gets better at first… only to fall completely apart.

I’d like to know the advantages of what I’ve gained access to and possessed for only four months. Because as of yet, I still use TEALIT to find work… and I’m growing very disgusted with schools, school administration and the educational system in Taiwan.

Please… tell me… what have I gained access to. What does it even mean to hold an APRC other than I can come and go as I please… and hold an open work permit? I really need some wisdom and guidance here because I’m quickly losing this battle.


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I think most people get APRC for the open work permit, and the right to stay here.

On unemployment benefit, this thread may have some info.

I think many people cannot do what they want to do to earn money, so they do whatever they can do.

Do you have some Mandarin skills?

My Mandarin is limited to what I want to eat or maybe catching a taxi. I was learning with the ex-GF… but that’s gone. Now, I feel adrift…


If you are IT people and language is one of problems to get a job, I think you can do remote work with your APRC.

August 1st is the date all the direct deposits will arrive for tax refunds if you wait in Taiwan right :smiley: ?

Good news! Daddy’s gettin’ some new teeth.

Well my question is has it ever been late?
I remember my 1st one was on Aug 1st but after that I got checks. This one will be another direct deposit.
I have to rely on my tax refund because my job is paying me late and daddy has bills to pay!

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