I recently went through the process of getting an APRC (Alien Permanent Resident Certificate, aka 外僑居留證) in Taiwan and documented it for other foreigners. I'm Canadian, so if you're another nationality, you're experience might be different.
Step 1. (Time: Depends, only took me 15 minutes, Cost: free)
Go to your local National Immigration Agency office, (the place where you usually go to get and renew your ARC), and ask if you're eligible for the APRC; they will do a check and make sure you've had an ARC for long enough (5 years) and make sure to ask if you have any gaps in your ARC that you might not know about. Also make sure you made enough money in the last Calendar year. The last I checked it was around NT$450,000 but confirm with the agents when you're at the NIA. You can ask the Tax office for that information if you're not sure.
Step 2. (Time: Less than 5 minutes, Cost: free)
Go to the Canadian Trade office in Taipei and pick up fingerprinting papers. This was easy as pie - I just scootered over, parked by the Mitsikoshi malls, zipped up, asked the receptionist, and voila!
Step 3. (Time: 10 minutes, Cost: Free calling with Skype)
I called the Canadian Legal Resource Center in Canada (1-800-320-2477) and confirm what they need from you. Have them send you the application form for them to submit the check for you. You need to call during business hours in Canada, of course. You need an application form, and don't forget to sign the release to have your criminal record sent to someone in Canada. You'll need photocopies of two pieces of Canadian ID (I used my driver's license and Canadian passport) as well as your ARC. Print the documents and application forms.
Step 4. (Time: 30 minutes or less, Cost: 100nt per fingerprinting set) Friday 13th
Step 5. (Time: 5-10 minutes, Cost: 300nt)
Mail documents to the Canadian Legal Resource Center in Canada. There is a post office in the basement of the Taipei City NIA Office right next to the counter for the fingerprinting. I sent it EMS (express post) and it arrived four days later. I also took photos of everything that was included in the packet and emailed them to the law office in Calgary to make sure everything was in order.
Step 6. (Time: 10-15 minutes, Cost: CAN$78.75, including taxes)
Called the Canadian Legal Resource Center again and gave them my credit card number - converting and processing of fingerprints costs CAN$78.75, including taxes. Also called the TECO office in Ottawa (1-613-231-5080 Ext. 225 or 239) to confirm everything needed for them to authenticate my criminal record check.
Step 7. (Time: 20 minutes, Cost: NT$750)
Had my letter of power of attorney notarized, allowing my friend (to whom my criminal record check was being released) to apply for the authentication. You'll need the same even if it's your family member that's receiving your criminal record check. The notary office was very friendly and easy to deal with. I used the Xinyi Associated Notary Public Office on the corner of Jilong Road and Xinyi Road in Taipei, but there are others you can use.
Step 8. (Time: 20 minutes, Cost: NT$300)
I mailed my power of attorney letter, my passport (you can also send a notarized copy, but that was expensive), and the TECO application form to my friend who was getting my Criminal Record Check in Canada. I used the Express Mail Service again, and it took 5 days.
Step 9: Health Check (Time: 2 hours, Cost NT$1,660)
You can do it at most national hospitals, I went to the Taipei City Hospital, Heping Branch (because of their quick processing time, 5 days) unfortunately because you need to get health check type B, NOT type A (the one you get for your ARC) which many Taiwanese people need to get, so you might need to do some waiting. Blood test and X ray themselves were quick. Went back on Friday 27th to pick it up.
10. (Time?, $107 Canadian) Wednesday 25th arrived in Ottawa on 26th (2 days for processing)
My friend took a photo of my criminal record check and emailed it to me (so I could have it translated). She put everything in an envelope and sent it to the TECO office in Ottawa. My friend got a certified cheque or money order, made out to "TECO in Canada" from the bank for $16 Canadian. This link explains everything you need to do http://www.taiwanembassy.org/CA/ct.asp?xItem=170084&ctNode=166&mp=77
My friend went and got a money order/cheque, the application forms, copies of their ID, my passport, my criminal record check, a letter requesting they send everything back to me in Taipei, and the money order for $76 and put them all in an express envelope to the TECO office in Ottawa. Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Canada 45 O’Connor Street, Suite 1960, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada K1P1A4 (613) 231-5080. $60 for the EMS to send it back to Taipei, $16 for TECO processing plus postage to send it to Ottawa.
11. (5 minutes, 100nt) pick up in 5 days Friday 27th
Went into the foreign affairs police station in Ximen, gave them my ARC and 100nt and requested a criminal record check. Picked up my Health Check from the Heping hospital.
12. (an hour or so driving around, gas money) Friday the 3rd
Picked up my Taiwanese Criminal Record Check, went to the tax office and picked up my blue tax paper, went to my boss and picked up my employment letter.
13. (an hour or so, 750nt) Monday 6th
My passport and authenticated criminal record check arrived in the mail on the 4th. I took them into the notary on Xinyi with the Chinese Translation of the Criminal Record Check. Also popped by my work and made a photo copy of every page of both my current and previous passports. Then went to my meeting at the NIA with the APRC agent.
Check list of everything you need to prepare
o Fingerprinting document from Canadian Trade Office in Taipei
o Photo copies of ID, application form, completed fingerprint forms for your Criminal Record Check (valid 3 months)
o Authenticated and certified copy of passport, or original passport, application form, letter of power of attorney to be sent to the person receiving and forwarding your Criminal Record Check to the TECO office for authentication
o Chinese Translation of RCMP Criminal Record Check, anyone can translate it but they need to sign it (also needs to be notarized )
o Health check type B (valid 3 months)
o Taiwan Criminal Record Check (valid 1 month)
o Tax 'income' form (it's blue) (valid 1 month)
o Employment certificate (letter from your boss, same one you use for your ARC) (valid 1 month)
o The originals of your work permits, for the past 5 years (at least)
o An ID photo
o Photo copies of every page of your current and previous passport and if your ARC on A4 paper
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