National Identification Card (Republic of China)

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National Identification Card
of the Republic of China
TaiwanIDCard jchung.jpg
Frontside of a Republic of China ID card
TaiwanID backside.jpg
Backside of a Republic of China ID card
Date first issued 1949
Issued by  Republic of China
Type of document Identity document
Purpose Identification
Eligibility requirements Republic of China nationality and
Household registration in Taiwan
National Identification Card
of the Republic of China
Traditional Chinese 中華民國
國民身分證
Simplified Chinese 中华民国
国民身分证

The National Identification Card (Chinese: 國民身分證; pinyin: Guómín Shēnfènzhèng; Pe̍h-ōe-jī: Kok-bîn Sin-hun-chèng) is a compulsory identity document issued to nationals of the Republic of China who have household registration in the Taiwan Area. The Identification Card is used for virtually all other activities that require identity verification within the ROC such as opening bank accounts and voting. Household registration in Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu along with other outlying islands as evidenced by the Republic of China National Identification Card, rather than the Republic of China Passport, grants the holder the right of abode and right to vote in the ROC.

Eligibility[edit]

The National Identification Card is issued to ROC nationals 14 years and older who have household registration in the Taiwan Area. Establishing household registration is required for a national over 14 years of age to possess a National Identification Card. Since the nationality law of the Republic of China makes no provision for "citizens" (公民) but merely defines those with ROC nationality as "nationals" (國民), ROC law makes a distinction between "registered nationals" (有戶籍國民) and "unregistered nationals" (無戶籍國民), with the former having the right of abode, right to vote, and other benefits of citizenship in Taiwan, while the latter are subject to deportation from Taiwan and need an entry permit to visit Taiwan. While "registered nationals" are entitled to hold the National Identification Card, "unregistered nationals" may only hold the Taiwan Area Resident Certificate. Both groups are eligible to hold the Republic of China passport. The Taiwan Area Resident Certificate is nearly identical to the Alien Resident Certificate (ARC) held by foreigners resident in Taiwan.

Children under the age of majority in Taiwan (20 years of age) may establish household registration as long as they have direct lineal relatives with household registration. For adult "unregistered nationals" to become "registered nationals", and thus eligible for a National Identification Card, they must reside in Taiwan for a certain period of time, during which they will hold a TARC instead of an ID Card. Currently, for "unregistered nationals" who have direct lineal relatives who are "registered nationals" (e.g. overseas-born Taiwanese) and foreigners who have naturalized as ROC nationals, this period is (1) continuously for one year, (2) 270 days per year for two years, or (3) 183 days per year for five years.

Usage[edit]

The Identification Card contains the holder's photo, ID number, Chinese name, and (Minguo calendar) date of birth. The back of the card contains more detailed information, including the person's registered address where official correspondence is sent, as well as the names of his/her parents and spouse. If the person moves, he/she must re-register at a municipal office (Chinese: 戶政事務所).

Unlike the Republic of China passport which can be issued overseas at Taipei Economic and Cultural Offices and ROC embassies and consulates, the National Identification Card is only issued in Taiwan at district, municipal, and township offices. Male dual passport holders who register for household registration and the Identification Card also become eligible for military conscription within the Republic of China, unless the person has overseas resident status (Chinese: 僑居身分).

Possession of the Identification Card is required to obtain the People's Republic of China's Taiwan Compatriot Permit for entry into Mainland China. Most countries granting visa-free entry for ROC passport holders require that the passport holder also possess a National Identification Card. Those without National Identification Cards (e.g. "unregistered nationals") will have the National Identification Card field blank in their passports.

Identity card number[edit]

Every citizen has a unique ID number. A valid National Identification number consists of one letter and nine-digits. The initial letter depends on the place of one's first household registration. The first digit depends on gender; 1 for male, 2 for female. The last digit is a checksum.

The letter usage is as follows:

Active Letters Letters no longer issued
Letter City/County
A Taipei City
B Taichung City
C Keelung City
D Tainan City
E Kaohsiung City
F New Taipei City
G Yilan County
H Taoyuan City
I Chiayi City
J Hsinchu County
K Miaoli County
Letter City/County
M Nantou County
N Changhua County
O Hsinchu City
P Yunlin County
Q Chiayi County
T Pingtung County
U Hualien County
V Taitung County
W Kinmen County
X Penghu County
Z Lienchiang County
Letter Original division Date of final issue Current division
L Taichung County Dec. 25, 2010 Taichung City
R Tainan County Dec. 25, 2010 Tainan City
S Kaohsiung County Dec. 25, 2010 Kaohsiung City
Y Yangmingshan Management Bureau 1975 Taipei City

See also[edit]