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After legally living and working in Taiwan for over 10 years, I overstayed my ARC card (it's a long and emotional story), for 2197 days and was detained for 3 months in the Nantau (?) Detention Centre (that was 'interesting') before being deported.

Does anyone know many years the penalty is preventing me from returning back to Taiwan? Is it 1 year, 3 years or 5 years? Am I banned from returning for life?

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    Were you not given any deportation paper or court papers (if you went to trial before internment)? Did they not stamp deportation details into your passport (including length of banishment)? The one case I know of, had both a deportation stamp and a can not return until XXX stamp put in his passport. – user13044 Sep 18 '16 at 7:15
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    I'm sorry to hear you overstayed by six years, and you were Detention Centered. Surely, you would need legal advice to now answer such a major issue? – Fattie Sep 18 '16 at 8:21
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    @JoeBlow Not if it's already mentioned in the documents mentioned by Tom. How long OP is banned for doesn't sound that hard to ascertain, if nothing else the Taiwanese government (embassy, foreign ministry) should be able to answer it. – Revetahw says Reinstate Monica Sep 18 '16 at 8:32
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    @Fiksdal: Interesting the question may be, but unless someone writes an exquisitely sourced answer and the OP reads Mandarin well enough to verify those sources for himself, he really shouldn't rely just on random people on the internet for a question of this (potentially life-changing) importance. – Henning Makholm Sep 18 '16 at 10:24
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    @HenningMakholm I do agree with that. Incidentally, mts has just posted an answer which seems decently sourced. Regardless, I agree that OP needs to proceed with caution. – Revetahw says Reinstate Monica Sep 18 '16 at 10:25
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Looks to me like you're in for a 3 year ban,

but you better check that yourself and take a look at the paperwork you got.

This law firm has been so nice to provide a translation of the "Operation Directions for Banning Entry of Aliens (禁止外國人入國作業規定)". You should really have a look at it yourself, find the neat PDF here. There is also a slightly older version on the website of the Ministry of the Interior.

You don't tell us all of your story, but adding to overstaying for six years and three month detention I will also assume you worked illegally in the meantime. I find the following provisions that fit for you at first glance (emphasis mine):

  • §3 (6)

    An alien who has been sentenced by a court to detention in prison or a criminal fine shall be banned from entry for 3 years.

  • §4 (1)

    an alien who has overstayed for 1 year or more shall be banned from entry for a time period equal to the period of the overstay with the maximum period of ban on entry being 3 years.

  • §4 (2)

    An alien who has worked illegally in Taiwan shall be banned from entry for 3 years

Note also in the same §

The period of ban on entry under the preceding paragraph shall be calculated from the day following the alien's exit from Taiwan.

It also helps to pay your fines if you have any open, as otherwise your ban gets extended by another 3 years (§6).

I do not find any mention of these bans being cumulative but let me repeat one more time: check the documentation you got, the stamps in your passport, the paperwork they gave you!

Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer and much less do I have any idea about Taiwanese law. I have no idea about the accuracy of the linked and cited translation nor whether that is the most recent version of the directive.

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    Note that you are banned for 3 years but that doesn't mean they will let you in after that. You'll have to apply for a visa and it's highly likely they'll subject you to the highest level of scrutiny. – RoboKaren Sep 18 '16 at 23:40

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