Terminating the Work Visa


My situation is that after five months in Taiwan I’ve experienced several major clashes and difficulties with various employers. The latest occurred when a second school I was working for (not the work permit issuer) asked to “buy” my work permit from my legal employer. He refused, even though he does not have the hours or the students to employ me full-time. My second school promptly fired me in favour of a foreign teacher who did have a legal work permit, fearing accelerated raidings by police. Certainly I haven’t played by the rules, but my legal employer has a history of failing to pay for hours worked, requiring extra hours and activities for no pay, etc. Now his refusal to release my work permit has angered me to the point where I need to know: How can I cancel the work permit independently? I took job action once before but became scared and resumed teaching. My recruiting agency abandoned me for fear of losing their commission, though they understood and realized my grievances. I’m willing to go to Hong Kong, start my ARC process over; sacrifice accrued days towards tax reduction, pretty much whatever it takes, because the principle of remaining in his employ is too offensive to me. There is a great deal of misinformation out there on this specific question, and hundreds of different answers. Can the foreign teacher cancel the work permit?


In looking over the postings on ORIENTED over the last month, I believe we are beginning to see a kind of “team spirit” emerge, where people are not only describing their difficulties, but are outlining the specific steps they took to solve those difficulties.

This is very important. There are many current problems in society, with new problems emerging day by day. The issue of “unfair treatment by an employer” has come up several times in this Forum, however concrete steps for dealing with this type of problem have not been forthcoming by the internet community.

According to an official at the Bureau of Labor Affairs (BLA) of the Taipei City Government, tel: (02) 2720-8889 ext. 1002, regardless of whether you are covered by the Labor Standards Law or not, you can still drop by their department to lodge a grievance against a local employer, or to inquire about your work rights. If necessary, they will arrange a formal meeting so that an employer and employee can discuss and negotiate their differences of opinion in front of a BLA representative.

I assume that all local city and county governments would have similar services. This being the case, I must suggest that someone, hopefully Praxeus, will take his/her own case (as an example), go to visit the officials involved, organize a negotiation session with the employer, and then write up a summary of the results for this Legal Matters Forum.

I hope that Praxeus considers this to be a practical suggestion. It is necessary to deal with a real live case, as opposed to just discussing things on a theoretical level, in order to really get such issues as these sorted out. I think that someone who carries through on dealing with their own “employer-employee relationship problems”, and then writing up a summary for this Forum will be doing a valuable public service.