Taiwanese man fined NT$170K for starting cross-border matchmaking agency

Disseminating, broadcasting or publishing advertisements of transnational marriage agencies is illegal according to the Immigration Act. (Illustrative photo courtesy of Shutterstock)

TAIPEI (The China Post) — A Taiwanese man was recently fined NT$170,000 by the National Immigration Agency (NIA, 移民署) for establishing a cross-border marriage agency after his happy marriage to his Vietnamese wife through matchmaking.

According to local Chinese-language media, the Kaohsiung native surnamed Wang had been happily married to his Vietnamese wife of 18 years. Their picture-perfect marriage later attracted the attention of friends and family who began asking about transnational marriages.

Starting out with the best of intentions, Wang began collaborating with local matchmaking agencies to launch a “wedding package” and posted ads on Facebook and placed posters on his own home.

However, this, in fact, violated the NIA’s “Immigration Act” which states that “dissemination or publication of cross-border marriage matching advertisements will be fined more than NT$100,000 regardless of whether the posters charge agency fees” according to the Taiwan Immigration Global News Network.

Wang admitted to contacting his matchmaking agent in Vietnam and collaborated together to launch a “wedding package” trip for US$6,000 (around NT$166,473). He later created advertisements, business cards, and even posted ads on Facebook to expand his business.

After being questioned by the NIA’s Kaohsiung service team (南區事務大隊高雄市專勤隊), Wang confessed that he successfully mediated two marriages in July 2018 and February 2020 and collected around NT$10,000 for both marriages.

After being fined NT$170,000 for the infraction on the “Immigration Act,” Wang declared that though he didn’t realize what he was doing was illegal, he has learned his lessons and will not do so again.

According to the Immigration Act’s Chapter 9 article 58, “no person shall disseminate, broadcast or publish advertisements of transnational marriage agencies through advertising, publication, broadcast, television, electronic signaling, internet or other means that can make the advertisements publicly known.”

Those who are interested in seeking transnational marriage matchmaking are advised by the NIA to go to their official website to seek out legal matchmaking agencies.

The NIA also pointed out that those seeking transitional marriages should make sure they sign a written contract drawn up by the legal matchmaking services and obtain a receipt after paying for their services.

In addition, prior to getting married, both parties must get to know each other’s family background, cultures and customs so that they can facilitate better communication and build a long-lasting marriage together.