APRC: how-to guide (esp. for Brits)

Short-term and long-term visas, application requirements, waiting times, advantages and disadvantages of stay vs. resident visas, who needs an ARC, and why do people opt for permanent residency
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APRC: how-to guide (esp. for Brits)

Postby highwave » 11 Apr 2008, 17:43

As of today, my application for an APRC is complete. All I can do now is wait. Without resting on my laurels, it's taken three months to gather all the required documents. Below is a log I kept to help myself keep track of the process and which I hope will prove useful to anyone setting out on the path to Permanence. I twice chose to fork out NT$625 to DHL documents to the UK, which I consider well worth it, since if you fall out of the three-month window that your UK pseudo-Clear Criminal Record Document (CCRD) is valid for, the multitude of other costs (medical, the CCRD itself, taxi rides during rushed lunch breaks, appearance of grey hairs) go the same way as the Jin Pai.

If I was to do it all again, I'd start with getting down to the National Immigration Agency (NIA; No. 15, Guangzhou St, Taipei City) and picking up a copy of the instructions for applying for the APRC - they are lengthy, comprehensive and interesting for their idosyncratic variation of Roman numerals.


Application log

4 January, 2008
Prepared application for Clear Criminal Record Document (CCRD). Post on Monday (registered post).

7 January, 2008
Application for CCRD posted (gua hao).

23 January, 2008
Received notification from Avon and Somerset Police that CCRD application has arrived.

20 February, 2008
Received CCRD from Avon and Somerset Police (dated 10 Feb, 2008)
Called NIA hotline (0800-024-111) to ask about CCRD document: do not need to translate. Needs to be authenticated by Taipei Rep Office in London.

25 February, 2008
Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Legalisation service:
http://www.fco.gov.uk/servlet/Front?pag ... 7029391440
Sent CCRD via DHL (Shipment Air Waybill 260 9514 106; NT$625) to The Legalisation Office, Old Admiralty Building, The Mall, London SW1A 2LG, enclosing: 1) cover letter, CCRD (+ copy), payment form

7 March, 2008
Legalised CCRD received from FCO.

10 March, 2008
Authentication of legalized CCRD - Bankers draft for £14.50 from HSBC (NT$1,104, incl NT$200 fee that’ll be refunded next month). Sent (DHL, NT$625) to: Taipei Representative Office (TRO) in the UK, 50 Grosvenor Gardens, London SW1W 0EB (020-7881 2650), enclosing: 1) document for authentication (already legalized by FCO), 2) copy of document, 3) completed application form, 4) copy of passport (data page), 5) banker’s draft (demand draft) for £14.50 (£7.50 fee plus £7.00 for International Recorded Delivery), 5) self-addressed envelope.

13 March, 2008
Visited NIA for clarification on what documents I still need.

19 March, 2008
Authenticated CCRD received from TRO in UK.

21 March, 2008
Local CCRD – applied for at Taipei City Police, No.96, Yanping S. Rd (entrance on Chunghua Road) NT$250. Pick up on Thurs 27 March. Form available at: http://eservice.mytaipei.tw/hypage.cgi? ... uid=157005
Medical examination – at Mackay Memorial Hospital (corner of Minsheng/Zhongshan). Needed passport, ARC and three photos. Faeces sample required. NT$1,090. Pick up on Fri 28 March.

31 March, 2008
Picked up medical test certificate.
Picked up local CCRD.
Went to NIA. Contrary to information given to colleague when she renewed my ARC, I must make an appointment to see the immigration officer before submitting application, not the other way around. Immigration officer was in the middle of an interview, but was good enough to go through my paperwork to check what I still needed:
• working permit for past 7 whole years – one original and two photocopies
• salary w/holding statements for past 3 years
• extra copy (ie, two copies) of entire content of my current and previous passport
• salary w/holding statement (x2) for past 3 years – from tax office
• income list for past 3 years – from tax office

He also made an interview appointment with me: Thurs 10 April, 10am

2 April, 2008
Made extra copies of passport
Spoke to ***** at the tax office (臺北市國稅局服務科 包文凱, Tel: 886-2-23113899 ext. ***, Fax: 886-2-23891051, Email: xxxxxxxx@ntat.gov.tw). Info from him on these:
• salary w/holding statement (x2) for past 3 years – from tax office – can get from him (same day, not at lunchtime)
• income list for past 3 years – can get from tax office general counter (take ARC/passport)
Missing – one ***** work permit (emailed HR with a request for company HR records to be checked); some monthly payment slips (could substitute with full-year withholding statement??)

3 April, 2008
Received from HR: Employment certificate and copy of previous work permit.

7 April, 2008
Went to tax office. Having rung ahead, photocopies of tax with-holding statements were waiting for me. Income list handled by general desk and handed to me after a five-minute wait.

10 April, 2008
Two-hour interview at NIA. All paperwork in order (I had to sign every single photocopied page), except one – UK CCRD must be translated into Chinese and the translation must be notarized by a local court. ***** is handling translation/notarization for me. Original of translation plus a copy will be delivered to Mr ****, or to Counter 15 for Mr *****. Will need to wait for up to two months for application to be processed. Told that APRC holder must be present in Taiwan for 183 days or more a year.

11 April, 2008
Notarised translation delivered (Tina Chen, Winkler Partners, 2311 2345 .ext 638, one-stop service for translation, notarisation and delivery) to Mr **** at NIA.

Next…
• Wait and hope
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Postby citizen k » 11 Apr 2008, 18:20

I'd say that if you made it through to the interview, your chances are pretty good.

Congratulations!
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Postby highwave » 29 Apr 2008, 10:27

UPDATE
29 April, 2008
Call from NIA to inform me to: 1) go, with passport and ARC, to NIA on Wed at 9:30am to pay NT$10,000 fee for APRC (Counter 15?); and 2) go to NIA on Friday at 9:30am to pick up APRC and attend lecture.
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Postby citizen k » 29 Apr 2008, 11:00

So, that only took about 20 days. Congratulations!
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Postby highwave » 02 May 2008, 18:11

citizen k wrote:So, that only took about 20 days. Congratulations!

Thanks, citizen k - I went to the NIA today, and along with a dozen others, received my shiny plastic card, had the re-entry permit in my passport cancelled and turned in my dog-eared ARC.
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Postby bigal » 07 Aug 2008, 18:07

Highwave, where did you say you lived on your CCRD and where was it posted to in the UK or how did Avon police get it to you, or did somebody else send it to you?
For authentication by the Taiwanese office in London, what form of payment did they accept?
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Postby Joesox » 10 Aug 2008, 20:51

bigal wrote:Highwave, where did you say you lived on your CCRD and where was it posted to in the UK or how did Avon police get it to you, or did somebody else send it to you?
For authentication by the Taiwanese office in London, what form of payment did they accept?
Taffy made a good post about the procedure:
http://www.forumosa.com/taiwan/viewtopic.php?t=64552

highwave wrote:Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Legalisation service:
http://www.fco.gov.uk/servlet/Front?pag ... 7029391440
Sent CCRD via DHL (Shipment Air Waybill 260 9514 106; NT$625) to The Legalisation Office, Old Admiralty Building, The Mall, London SW1A 2LG, enclosing: 1) cover letter, CCRD (+ copy), payment form
They've just moved to Milton Keynes.
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Postby bigal » 11 Aug 2008, 10:50

I was just wondering whether highwave lied and committed a criminal act by
writing that his full time address was in the UK when he filled the form out.

At the bottom of the form it says givng false information is a criminal act so to fill the form out and to get a reply you have to give false information by saying that you live at the address you give in the UK??????

Sort of defeats the object of the whole process saying that you are honest and a good little boy so let me live in Taiwan although you just made me give false information to the police although before I never did anything wrong. Get my point?

I know, here it comes . Don't do it then. Yep that sure is a great answer. solves all the problems.
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Postby Taffy » 11 Aug 2008, 11:13

I am still on the electoral roll at the address I used in the UK - nowhere on the form does it state that you have to permanently reside there. You have to list all the places you've lived in the UK over the past few years (for me that was quite a few), but although it asks you for an address to send the forms to, which must match the address on your ID (driving license etc.) it DOES NOT state that this has to be your "full time" address.

Check the form for yourself.

And to be honest, there's no way they're going to waste their time coming around to check that you actually live there. That's what your photocopied ID is for.

In any case, highwave had his form sent directly to him in Taiwan (it seems I was wrong in my post to state that they will not send it overseas).
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Postby Joesox » 11 Aug 2008, 13:45

Taffy wrote:I am still on the electoral roll at the address I used in the UK - nowhere on the form does it state that you have to permanently reside there. You have to list all the places you've lived in the UK over the past few years (for me that was quite a few), but although it asks you for an address to send the forms to, which must match the address on your ID (driving license etc.) it DOES NOT state that this has to be your "full time" address.

Check the form for yourself.

And to be honest, there's no way they're going to waste their time coming around to check that you actually live there. That's what your photocopied ID is for.

In any case, highwave had his form sent directly to him in Taiwan (it seems I was wrong in my post to state that they will not send it overseas).
Hmmm. This could be a real problem for me. The last place I was registered was Leeds. And the West Yorks Police say they'll only send the certificate to the registered address. In fact they want proof that I live at the address I use, so using my mum's address is out in any case.

There's another kind of police clearance certificate that's just come out: the ACRO police certificate. That can be processed in two days. But currently it's only supposed to be used for immigration applications for Australia, Canada, NZ, and the USA. I don't imagine they'd issue one for another purpose, and even if they did, the FCO might not validate it.
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