The overstay post to end all overstay posts (yeah, right!)

I’ve read lots of posts and run into a lot of desparate fellow non-Taiwan citizens with the overstay problem. I’m going to state the obvious here because it needs to be stated and no one has really done so in a comprehensive way. I guess when the problem arises, it’s already too late and then people end up frantically seeking help in the Legal Forum. I have no doubt that the posts in this topic have prevented many people from overstaying.
There is no reason to go into denial and get wrapped up in your daily life only to find out that you’ve overstayed. Calculate on the day of arrival when your last day in Taiwan is. Remember the day and always keep it in the back of your head, in your calendar, or posted on door. Paint it in lavendar on the wall if you please. Just KNOW THE DATE!
You know for what purpose you are in Taiwan. If that purpose changes, runs out or is cancelled, report to the police and get their advise. If you quit or were fired, your relationship with your employer is null and void. Do not think they are going to be nice and not cancel your ARC. They are not your daddy and reporting termination of your employment is their obligation, not spite directed at you.
The logical conclusion is that you should always have enough money for a visa run. That’s 2 bottles of wine, 2 dinners at Dan Ryan’s, a cell phone and a few long-distance phone calls in value.
It wouldn’t hurt to get a credit card in case you want to charge the ticket. Some people who have lived here for a long time on student visas are required to have NT$100,000 in their account if they want to come back. Keep that in mind if you think it is hard to keep NT$15,000 saved for a visa run.
If you have a friend right now who seems to be drifting or is between jobs have “the talk” with them. “Dude, are you cool with your visa now?” If they give a vague answer and not an exact date, then it’s “Let’s check your passport” time.
Some friends may let their visa run out if they can’t pay tuition momentarily. They will have the money in a month, but not when their visa runs out. Lend that person the money if they are a decent person. They will be very appreciative. Just be sure they are looking you strait in the eyes when they say they will pay you back and look them strait in the eyes and repeat the time they said they will pay you back.
In short:
I wasn’t once and lucked out. I overstayed one day, but was running late for my plane. I was told to go to the office and when I got there I told him I have 10 minutes to board. He made me promise never to do it again and hurried me along.
My friend who overstayed for, erm, years, lost everything. The love of a lifetime, a car, a nice apartment, etc. This person will not be allowed back for a few long years. This person got a new passport and did not get caught coming back, but got caught on the next visa run and was not allowed back into the country.

And one more important thing.

Look at your passport carefully. See that bit that says your visa is valid until xxxx (date). That is not how long you can stay in Taiwan until. That is when you have to use the visa to enter Taiwan by.


Funny thing is, I know a guy who has overstayed once or twice each year for the last four, ‘studying Chinese’ at Flag or TLI while teaching with no work permit, and still hasn’t been bounced. Maybe he has friends in high places.

The best advice is to get a resident visa. Short-term visas are a hassle.

You’ve completely degenerated everything I had written with this cute little anecdote. Its “overstay stories” like yours that gets a lot of people into these visa problems in the first place.
What you’ve done is tantamount to whispering to the townspeople the day after Jesus Christ knocked over booths at the temple and saying … “I know this one guy who made a bundle at the temple down the street. No fanatic every knocked HIS booth over.”

I overstayed a resident visa years ago for one day on the advice of the FAP, as my transfer from student resident visa to working resident visa was taking so long. When I got my “telegram advice” (to take to Hong Kong) and went to the FAP to get my visa sorted, they gave me no end of hassle about having overstayed even though it was them that advised me to do so. After graciously waiving the fine, they gave me an overstayed stamp and a prohivition on getting a landing visa for a year. The next day I went to Hong Kong where I spent half an hour explaining the Chinese language “Yuqi juliu yi yifa chuli” stamp on my passport. Then I went to Chung Hwa, picked up my letter, and back to Taipei where I got my new RV.

I talked to the same guy on both visits to the FAP and he assured me he had to stamp my passport. One of the Chief Immigration Officers in Honkers didn’t believe me 'til I pulled out my old ARC and all my documents. She just couldn’t get her head round the FAP telling me to overstay, then endorsing my passport when they knew I was getting a new RV, and me going to HK for 5 hours to get a new Taiwan visa - which was actually going to be issued in Taiwan anyway ! Strange woman. She wasn’t a gweimei either.

[correction: “I overstayed a resident visa years ago for one day on the …”

What I “overstayed” was my ARC. Resident Visas do not have any expiry date on them.]