Overseas Compatriot Identity Certification Act
By Order of the President No. Hua-Chung-Yi-Yi-09100243550 dated December 18 2002
Article 1: This Act is promulgated for purposes of issuing Overseas Compatriot Identity Certificates and processing of Overseas Compatriot Identity Visas.
Article 2: The competent authority under this Act is the Overseas Chinese Affairs Commission (hereafter “OCAC”).
Article 3: This Act applies to Republic of China (“ROC”) nationals who reside in a foreign country, but residents of Mainland China, Hong Kong or Macau, and persons holding passports issued by Mainland China region shall be excluded from the scope of this Act.
Article 4: A ROC national residing in a foreign country who satisfies any one of the following criteria may apply for the Overseas Compatriot Identity Certificate:
1. He/she currently resides in a country or region with a permanent residency system, and satisfies the following requirements:
(1) Has gained permanent residency at the place of overseas residence;
(2) Has resided overseas for a cumulative total of at least four (4) years;
(3) Has resided continuously at the place of overseas residence for six (6) months, or has spent at least eight (8) months of each year in the preceding two (2) years at the place of overseas residence.
2. He/she currently resides in a country or region where there is no permanent residency system, or where there is a system of permanent residency but it is difficulty to obtain such permanent residency, and satisfies the following requirements:
(1) Has been granted temporary residency at the place of overseas residence for four (4) consecutive years, and is eligible for further extensions of residency;
(2) Has resided overseas for a cumulative total of at least four (4) years;
(3) Has resided continuously at such place of overseas residence for six (6) months, or has spent at least eight (8) months of each year in the preceding two (2) years at the place of overseas residence.
3. He/she has departed Taiwan, has lived legally overseas for ten (10) consecutive years, is legally employed at the place of overseas residence for four (4) years or more, and is eligible for further extensions of residency.
The definition of countries or regions where it is difficulty to obtain permanent residency as referred to in Paragraph 2 above, as well as recognition of residency qualifications shall be regularly prescribed and promulgated each year by the competent authority upon consultation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The issuance of Overseas Compatriot Identity Certificates to those men who satisfy the requirements in Paragraph 1 above but have not yet fulfilled his military service obligations, for identification purposes relating to conscription administration or customs processing, shall be subject to the restrictions imposed by other laws and regulations, and the competent authority shall annotate on such Certificates so issued that the said Certificate is issued solely for conscription administration purposes.
Article 5: A person applying for an Overseas Compatriot Identity Certificate shall lodge the application with the competent authority by submitting the following documentation:
1. Application form;
2. Personal identification document;
3. Proof of residency at place of overseas residence;
4. Proof of period of overseas residence;
5. Proof of Republic of China nationality, or proof of Chinese ethnicity authenticated or issued by a Republic of China consulate, representative office, administration office, or other authority authorized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (together hereafter “Foreign Representative Office”).
6. Other relevant evidentiary documentation.
Rules applying to authentication or issue of proof of Chinese ethnicity referred to in Subparagraph 5 above shall be prescribed by the competent authority upon consultation with the relevant authorities.
Article 6: Where the applicationfor an Overseas Compatriot Identity Certificate is submitted with a proof of Chinese ethnicity referred to in Paragraph 1, Subparagraph 5 of the preceding Article, the competent authority shall annotate on the Overseas Compatriot Identity Certificate issued the fact that the applicant had lodged the application on the basis of such proof of Chinese ethnicity. The substantive validity of such Overseas Compatriot Identity Certificate shall be as determined by the relevant authority for enterprises of each specific purpose.
Article 7: The competent authority may authorize a Foreign Representative Office or a local private organization to process Overseas Compatriot Identity Certificate applications in accordance with the special needs of the place of overseas residence. The relevant procedures shall be determined by the competent authority.
Article 8: The Overseas Compatriot Identity Certificate is valid for one (1) year from the date of issuance.
Article 9: A new application for an Overseas Compatriot Identity Certificate shall be lodged for the issuance of a new Certificate where a Certificate is destroyed, lost or damaged.
Article 10: A ROC national who resides overseas, who holds a standard ROC passport, and who satisfies the requirement stipulated in Article 4, Paragraph 1 above, may applyto have an Overseas Compatriot Identity Visa affixed on his/her passport. Persons falling within any the following descriptions shall not be eligible toapply:
1. A male who has not fulfilled his military service obligations, and who is restricted from holding the Overseas Compatriot Identity Visa by other relevant laws or regulations;
2. A male currently serving in the military or substitute military service;
3. Persons restricted by other laws or regulations.
Where a person applies for the aforementioned Visa within the ROC, the competent authority shall confirm the overseas compatriot identity of such applicant before transferring the application to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for processing; where the application is lodged overseas, the Foreign Representative Office authorized by the competent authority shall directly proceed with confirmation and processing of the application, or shall process the application after requesting for confirmation by the competent authority. The documentary requirements for the confirmation of overseas compatriot identity as described under article 5, Paragraph 1 above shall apply mutatis mutandis to the preceding paragraph.
Article 11: Where an application for renewal or replacement of a passport affixed with an Overseas Compatriot Identity Visa is lodged, the said Visa may be transferred after verifying that relevant proof of overseas residency at the place of foreign residence has not expired.
Article 12: Where a person holds a valid passport affixed with the Overseas Compatriot Identity Visa, The said Visa shall have the same validity as an Overseas Compatriot Identity Certificate during the validity period of such Visa. This article does not apply where other laws or regulations requires submission of an Overseas Compatriot Identity Certificate.
Article 13: Where a person applying for an overseas Compatriot Identity Certificate or an Overseas Compatriot Identity Visa pursuant to this Act is a person with restricted capacity to act within the meaning under the ROC Civil Code, the application shall be subject to the written consent of the statutory representative for such applicant; where such applicant lacks capacity to act, the application shall be lodged by the statutory representative on behalf of such applicant. The aforementioned right of consent may be exercised by the father, mother or guardian of such applicant.
Article 14: A fee shall be charged by the competent authority for the processing of Overseas Compatriot Identity Certificate applications pursuant to this Act. The amount of such fee shall be as prescribed by the competent authority.
Article 15: The format and information to be recorded on Overseas Compatriot Identity Certificates shall be as prescribed by the competent authority.
Article 16: The Enforcement Rules to this Act shall be prescribed by the competent authority.
Article 17: This Act shall commence and enter into force on the date of promulgation.