What is the change? Taiwan released additional details Tuesday on the “Gold Card,” a combined work-and-residence permit that was introduced Feb. 8.

What does the change mean? The new updates to the Recruitment and Employment of Foreign Professionals Act define “foreign special professionals” and offer clarification on key provisions of the law.

Updates to the law:

  • “Foreign special professionals” are defined as experts working in one of eight fields: technology, economic, education, cultural and art, sport, financial, law, and architecture. Each field has its own criteria, including minimum education, salary, work experience and other qualifications.
  • Foreign special professionals are eligible to apply for the Gold Card – a combined work-and-residence permit that foreign special professionals may apply for without needing an employer to sponsor them. Gold Cards will be granted for one- or three-year durations and will allow foreign workers to change jobs or look for a job without losing status.
  • Work permits for foreign special professionals will be issued for five-year terms, instead of the current three years.
  • Foreign special professionals with a Gold Card whose annual salary exceeds 3 million New Taiwan dollars (about US$102,000) may deduct half of the amount above the 3 million Taiwan dollars for tax purposes in the first three years. (Individuals who previously held an Alien Resident Certificate and transfer to a Gold Card will not have this benefit).
  • Freelance artists may obtain work permits without applying through an employer.
  • “Cram schools” in Taiwan may hire foreign teachers with expertise or professional skills for teaching.

Background: The Recruitment and Employment of Foreign Professionals Act introduced the Gold Card, expanded the duration of work permits to five years and relaxed several rules for permanent residency. Full changes are detailed in a previous BAL news alert here. Taiwan’s National Immigration Agency released an update to the law Tuesday to clarify the changes.

BAL Analysis: The law relaxes several rules for expatriate employees and their families and provides a number of financial and social benefits to foreign professionals seeking to work and live in Taiwan. The added criteria to define foreign special professionals limits Gold Card eligibility to specific industry sectors.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Taiwan. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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