Visas and Work Permits 12 min

Work permits and visas in Taiwan: an employer’s guide

Written by Sally Flaxman
Sally Flaxman

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If you’re looking to hire or relocate employees to Taiwan, you have to ensure they have the proper legal status to work there. You’ll need to obtain the correct work permits and visas and comply with immigration rules while you:

  • Employ a foreign national in Taiwan

  • Hire a candidate in Taiwan without owning a local entity

  • Relocate an existing employee to Taiwan

  • Support a digital nomad who wants to work in Taiwan.

An employer of record (EOR) like Remote can handle all the processes involved in international employment — from onboarding, benefits, and payroll, to compliance with tax regulations and immigration laws.

In this guide, we’ll explain how you can get a work visa in Taiwan, the long-stay visas available, and how Remote’s EOR can help you with compliance while hiring abroad.

The importance of immigration compliance in Taiwan

With the rise of remote working and digital nomadism, governments are increasingly enforcing legislation to ensure that individuals don’t get away with working on a tourist visa. Working on a tourist visa is often illegal.

Taiwanese employees and residents are expected to pay various taxes and social security contributions that fund statutory benefits like health insurance for all Taiwanese residents. It is essential to obtain the correct Taiwan work visa requirements and work permits to avoid violating local labor laws. Employees working without the proper work permit or visa may face consequences of penalties, fines, or even jail time.

Remote’s employer of record lets you easily hire remote employees to grow your international team. In addition, Remote takes care of HR tasks and global payroll for your international employees so you can focus on expanding your business and completing quality work. Partnering with an employer of record like Remote ensures you have all the necessary paperwork to comply with all local labor laws. 

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Which workers need a right-to-work check in Taiwan?

You must obtain a work permit to work in Taiwan as a non-citizen. The Taiwanese government has put in several requirements that individuals must meet to qualify for a work permit:

  • Have work experience in the relevant field for a minimum of five years.

  •  Must currently work for a company or have a job offer. 

  • Have established an employment contract in writing with the company.

  • Makes a salary that meets the minimum salary requirements.

The Taiwanese government only gives out work permits to professionals in specific industries.

Do non-citizens need a work visa or work permit in Taiwan?

Yes. If you are a non-citizen, or foreign national, who wants to work in Taiwan, you must obtain the following:

  • Taiwan work permit

  • Taiwan work visa

  • Taiwan residence permit, officially known as Alien Resident Certificate (ARC)

Taiwan work permit

An individual requires a Taiwan work permit to work in the country. The employer must get a Taiwan work permit for a foreign employee they plan to hire. Employers can apply for their employee’s work permits online, in person, or by registered mail to the Workforce Development Agency (WDA) of the Ministry of Labor. The work permit lasts six months and can be extended up to three years.

Once the employer has obtained a work permit for their employee, then depending on where the employee is currently living, they have two options: 

  • Apply for a Taiwan work visa (if the individual is abroad)

  • Apply for a Taiwan residence permit (if the individual is already in Taiwan on a visitor visa)

The Taiwan visitor visa is required for short-term stays of up to 90 days for tourism, social visits, business, attending conferences and events, and other approved purposes unrelated to paid employment. Individuals can use a Taiwan visitor visa once or multiple times within three to five years.

Taiwan work visa

A Taiwan work visa allows individuals not currently living in Taiwan to travel to Taiwan for employment. The key can be used for a single entry or multiple entries, and may last from three months to one year. Taiwan work visa requirements include submitting an application and other required documents to the Taiwanese Bureau of Consular Affairs in their home country.

Suppose the employee is already living in Taiwan under a different visa. They can convert it into a Taiwan work visa through the Bureau of Consular Affairs. The employee must apply at least eight days before the expiration of the current visa.

Taiwan resident permit (Alien Resident Certificate)

Even though the Taiwan work permit allows individuals to work and the Taiwan work visa allows entry into the country, individuals cannot stay in Taiwan longer than 90 days unless they have a valid Taiwan resident permit. The Taiwan resident permit is officially called an Alien Resident Certificate (ARC). Workers must apply for this resident permit from one of the Taiwan National Immigration Agency’s local service centers.

To obtain a Taiwan resident permit, an individual must apply for it within 15 days of entry into Taiwan. The resident permit can be issued for up to three years, and it’s renewable.

What are the eligibility requirements for a work visa in Taiwan?

After the work permit is approved, an individual can apply for a Taiwan work visa.

If the employee is already in Taiwan and has a valid short-term visa, they can convert it into a Taiwan work visa through the Taiwanese Bureau of Consular Affairs. The employee must apply at least eight days before the expiration of the current visa.

If the employee is not living in Taiwan, they must apply for a Taiwan work visa through the Taiwanese Bureau of Consular Affairs in the country where they currently reside. 

In some situations, officers from the consular will require an in-person interview with the employee. Once the consular approves the application, it will issue the visa and return the passport to the individual. Employees not already in Taiwan can then make arrangements to travel to the country.

What are the long-stay visa types in Taiwan?

In Taiwan, long-term visas typically fall under the umbrella classifications of a Taiwan resident visa, Taiwan resident permit, or officially an Alien Resident Certificate. The various long-term visas are for foreigners who want to stay in Taiwan for longer than 90 days for a specific purpose.

The long-stay visa types include the following:

Taiwan work visa. This visa is issued to foreigners who would like to work as an employee in Taiwan. Employees will also need a work permit, which their employer must obtain.

Taiwan student visa. This visa is for foreigners who wish to study in a Taiwanese educational institution. A school or university in Taiwan must have accepted the student already before they can apply for this visa.

Taiwan family reunification visa. This visa is for individuals who want to join a family member who is a Taiwanese resident. The family member may include a spouse, parent, or child.

Taiwan entrepreneur visa. This visa is for foreigners who intend to set up a business in Taiwan. The Taiwanese government added this visa in 2015 to attract foreign entrepreneurs to engage in Taiwan’s economy and to foster innovation and entrepreneurship. The Investment Commission of the Ministry of Economic Affairs of Taiwan will determine the candidate’s eligibility by examining their funding, patents, and education before issuing this visa.

Taiwan working holidays visa. This visa is issued to students or recent graduates aged 18 to 30 from countries with a Working Holiday Scheme established with Taiwan. This visa expires in one year and allows a visitor to stay in the country for 180 days.

Taiwan digital nomad visa. Officially known as the Taiwan Employment Gold Card, this visa is issued to foreign digital nomads who want to work remotely from Taiwan.

How do you get a work visa for Taiwan?

Before applying for a work visa, employees will first need to complete a medical examination and get a health certificate. The certificate must be from a hospital appointed by the Centers for Disease Control of the Ministry of Health and Welfare of Taiwan. Employees who receive a health certificate from a non-Taiwanese hospital must have it legalized by a Taiwanese diplomatic mission.

Then, employees must apply to the Taiwanese Bureau of Consular Affairs. The application must include the following documents:

  • Completed work visa application form

  • A passport that is valid for at least another six months

  • Two color photographs that are passport-sized and have a white background (taken in the last six months)

  • Approved Taiwan work permit

  • Certificate of health conducted within the past three months

  • Any other documents related to the employee’s profession

  • Identification documents for a spouse or children with the employee

Employees looking to convert their existing visa into a Taiwan work visa must follow the same application process as above. They must submit their application at least eight days before the short-term visa expires. The Taiwanese government usually issues work visas in 30 business days. 

What is the process for employee work visa sponsorship in Taiwan?

To get a Taiwan work visa, employers must apply for a work permit on their employee’s behalf. The employer must indicate whether the worker is specialized or technical or a managerial employee. There are stricter requirements to hire the latter.

The employer must meet specific capital requirements to obtain a work permit for its employees. That depends on factors such as how long the company has been operational. Companies may also qualify through other means, such as having: 

  • Commission revenue of at least $400,000 in import and export in the previous year.

  • Research and development centers or operational headquarters approved by the Taiwanese government.

  • A representative office approved by the Taiwanese government.

  • We have made significant economic contributions to Taiwan.

In addition, the employer must submit copies of the following documents with the Taiwan work permit application:

  • Corporate income tax return

  • Company representative’s identification cards or passports

  • Company’s registration certification, business registration, and business permits

  • Employee’s individual income tax statement for the current year

  • Employee’s identification cards or passports

  • Employee’s education diploma and proof of authentication by a Taiwan embassy

  • Employee’s medical examination report

  • Employment contract

  • Letter of foreign investment approval

  • Work experience certificate

  • Any applicable fee

After the employer has secured the employee’s work permit, the employee can apply for a Taiwan work visa. 

What are the visa requirements for digital nomads in Taiwan?

Taiwan does not have a visa designed for digital nomads. Instead, digital nomads may apply for the Taiwan Employment Gold Card. It is a combination of a work permit, resident permit, and visa for skilled professionals. With the Gold Card, digital nomads can stay in Taiwan for one to three years. They can apply for permanent residence after five years.

The Gold Card applies to freelancers and self-employed individuals who work and live in Taiwan and make at least $5,700 a month. This card also entitles individuals to work for any (or multiple) Taiwanese companies or start their own enterprises.

Digital nomads must apply for a Gold Card online through the official Taiwan Employment Gold Card website. The application process is as follows:

  • Apply online through the Foreign Professionals Online Application Platform website. You will have to create an account. 

  • Make sure to write your name on the application form exactly as it appears on the passport. 

  • Foreign nationals should upload the following documents: a passport, the relevant visa, proof of working as a foreign professional specialist, and the Alien Resident Certificate. 

  • There will be a review process once the application has been accepted. If the application is approved, the individual must bring their passport in for an inspection by the Bureau of Consular Affairs. The process usually takes a week.

  • Once the application and passport are approved and processed, workers will get their Gold Card.

How Remote makes compliance in Taiwan so much easier

Whether the employee wants to move to Taiwan long-term or wants to work there temporarily as a digital nomad, you’ll have to help them obtain a work permit from the Taiwanese government. 

The immigration and relocation process can be stressful for both the employee and the employer. Each case is unique, and working with an employer of record like Remote can help you with visas, immigration, compliance, and more. From avoiding permanent establishment risks to paying local taxes, Remote can make it simple and easy to hire in Taiwan.

Remote helps you easily manage relocation with speed, accuracy, and compliance. For more information on how we can help, check out our relocation guide. It will give you an overview of the steps to relocate your employees, including how to stay compliant, tax implications, and how to streamline the process.

For specific questions about sponsoring employees in Taiwan, contact our Mobility experts, who can advise you on the best path forward.

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