How Foreigners Stay in Taiwan without Employment

One of the biggest concerns for foreigners wanting to stay in Taiwan either after finishing school or working on their own business is a visa. Most people in fact who cannot find employment due to their native language being something other than English end up leaving the island without getting a chance to contribute even though they have this goal in mind. But is there an alternative way you can get a visa in Taiwan without having to stay in school or work for an employer? The answer is yes.
It will cost you though. The method we refer to is essentially a made-up visa from either lawyers or accountants who create profiles of the individual either as an employee of their company or as a separate company that is an offshoot of another. Both of these methods work very well and in total coast about NT$150,000-200,000a year, which in all honesty, is quite cheap compared with other visa requirements the Taiwan government has set up that require capital of NT$500,000.


How it works


Lawyers and accountants in Taipei typically charge an initial NT$90,000 for this service and do not advertise it for legality purposes. This fee covers the paperwork fees for filling out the paper work that includes proof of capital for starting a company in Taiwan, which currently requires NT$500,000 for foreigners as a minimum. The loophole in this scenario for starting a company is that you simply need to show via a bank slip this money exists in a bank account initially and you are not required to maintain monthly reports to the government proving that amount still exists. Lawyers and accountants can use capital within their own organizations along with your own name as an employee or they can shift it into a temporary bank account that also has their information but with you as an additional beneficiary in order to get this process done and prevent you from having to get your own funding into an account. Essentially, you don’t have to worry about getting funding and do not have to go through the almost 3 month paper-work nightmare that is required in which you need to set up an LLC etc. like some people do.


The initial fee doesn’t stop there, however. Because you are supposed to be paying into the health insurance system as well as supposedly keeping records of income there are two other expenses that come along the way. The health insurance fee for the year in order to act as a sole company or as a potential employee of another company means you need to pay out different rates (this depends on the setup the lawyer chooses) but typically costs around NT$30-45,000 a year. Also, you need to show income of minimum NT$2 million a year, which based on the tax bracket in Taiwan minus costs the lawyer writes up for you will put you at around NT$30,000-40,000 a year in taxes. Actually, this is quite reasonable as is the health insurance when compared with other countries around the world but it is something you need to prepare for in advance.


The roughly NT$60,000-85,000 fee is a given and depending on who you go through they may require you to pay the NT$90,000 fee yearly. There are some accountants in Taipei that offer this as a one-type thing but these services are becoming harder to find. For the sake of privacy we cannot list the organizations providing these services.

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