Foreign workers no longer required to leave Taiwan when work permit expires

Ministry of Labor promulgated an amendment to Article to Article 52 of the Employment Services Act. The new regulations eliminate the requirement for foreign workers to leave Taiwan for a minimum of one day on completion of a three-year work contract. Hereafter, employers can apply to the Ministry for an extension when a work permit expires and, on approval, foreign workers may continue to work without having to leave Taiwan.

1. Extending contracts on expiry
– Foreign workers and employers shall discuss whether to extend an existing work permit or the transfer to work for another employer 2 to 4 months before the original employment contract expires. In the event that both parties agree to extend the existing employment contract and the employer has a valid recruitment permit issued by the Ministry of Labor, said employer need only file an application for an extension and once the Ministry approves the application, the foreign worker can continue working in Taiwan.

2. No Contract Extension/ Transfer to New Employer

Question: If the employer and employee decide not to extend the employment contract, how should the employer deal with the matter?

A. If a foreign worker does not want to continue working in Taiwan, the employer shall, in accordance with the present regulations, assist the foreign workers in returning home before the expiry date.

B. If the employee remains the willingness to work in Taiwan, the employer shall prepare an application form and the prescribed documents to the Ministry of Labor for applying the change of employer within 2 to  4 months before the expiry of the employment expired.

Step by step applications.
4 months before the contract expires
-Employer extend the contract on expiry or transfer to a new employer(no contract extension)
-The application should start 4 months before the contract expires

2 months before the contract expires
-Employer extends the contract on expiry or transfers to a new employer
-This will be the deadline application.

14 days before the contract expires
– No new employer to extend the contract or foreign worker no longer plans to work in Taiwan.
-Original employer prepares procedures for foreign worker returning home

3. Brokerage Fees
– When the original employer extends an employment contract or new employer wants to hire a foreign worker who is coming to the end of his/her existing work contract, the original employer or new employer is required to pay a registration fee and introduction fee(commonly know as brokerage fee) to the labor broker commissioned to deal with the matter,. The fee charged cannot exceed the foreign worker’s first monthly salary. Brokers may only solicit a service fee from foreign workers.

4. Leave / Returning Home

A. A foreign worker who is applicable to the provisions of Labor Standards Act has continued to work for a certain period of time in the same employer or institution, should be given special leave in accordance with following provisions

a. 6 months- under 1 year: 3 days
b. Over 1 year – under 2 years: 7 days
c. Over 2 years- under 3 years: 10 days
d. Over 3 years- under 5 years: 14 days
e. Over 5 years- under 10 years: 15 days
f. Over 10 years, one extra day is added each year for a maximum of 30 days

B. For those foreign workers to whom the provisions of the labor standard Act do not apply, their employment contracts shall stipulate a set number of paid annual leave days.

C. The paid annual leave days of foreign workers accrued through the Labor Standard Act or employment contracts can be used to return to their countries of origin and they may set a date to return to work n their own terms, to which the employer shall agree.

D. In cases where enterprise operations or the urgent needs of those being cared for, employers may consult with foreign workers to set a date on which work will resume. If the consultation is failed, the employer shall remain to agree to let foreign workers return home in accordance with the date originally scheduled by the foreign workers.

E. Regulations governing categories of leave other than paid annual leave, such as marriage leave, bereavement leave, and personal leave are contained in the Labor Standard Ac, Gender Equality Act or the labor employment contract. Employers are required to pay employees for paid annual leave days, but not for personal leave.

If you have any questions concerning the amendment to Article 52 of the Employment Service Act or other inquiries about protecting your rights, please call the 1955 Foreign Workers’ Hotline or visit the Ministry of Labor’ Foreign Workers Right Protection website at

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