According to Taiwan’s laws and regulations, employers hiring illegal migrant workers are liable to a fine ranging from NT$150,000 to NT$750,000, and up to 3 years of imprisonment for a repeat offense within 5 years.
However, many people who are short on manpower inadvertently hire workers through illegal agencies without checking the real identity of the employees first, thus breaking the law without knowing.
Last year, the authorities discovered 58 cases of illegally hiring migrant workers in New Taipei, collecting as much as NT$5 million of fine in total.
Business cards of Illegal agents disguised as care centers are often found in hospitals, falsely claiming to be legit institutions “filed by the government,” providing caretaking services offered by so-called “new immigrants”, when they are actually runaway migrant workers.
According to The New Taipei City Government Labor Affairs Bureau (新北市勞工局), many families with patients urgently needing to be cared for have fallen prey to the deception of illegal agencies and hired illegal migrant workers unknowingly.
There are also many employers in desperate need of foreign caregivers who have chosen to secretly hire illegal migrant workers since the process of applying for a legal migrant worker through proper channels can be time-consuming, with the cost often doubled.
Employers should be warned of a fine ranging from NT$150,000 to NT$750,000 if caught hiring illegal migrant workers, therefore, one should think twice before taking the risk.
To prevent from unintentionally hiring illegal workers, employers should beware of advertisements from unknown agencies and private care centers. The bureau said that hospitals usually have a partner care agency, people in need of caregiving services can turn to hospitals for recommendations.
The Bureau reminds employers to check the residence permit or dependent relative certificate when hiring new immigrants or foreigners as caregivers, and to always take photos or keep copies of their identity information in order to protect themselves.