*** VERY IMPORTANT NOTICE ***
D-8 visa holders are in a frenzy to somehow convert their sole proprietorship's into corporations in order to continue living in Korea. The immigration office released a notice Friday that WILL HELP YOU. I wanted to inform you all of the notice before I translate it so that you can get a head start because there is a DEADLINE OF MONDAY, OCTOBER 29, about a week away. It's only available on the Korean site, so here are the instructions to download your copy.
- Goto hikorea.go.kr (Korean)
Jason - Thanks a lot for this. Is the notice available in PDF or other attachable format? If so, can you attach it to this discussion?
I had a D-8 holder contact me on fb this morning because she is in Spain so I ended up calling immigration. Turns out, the Monday deadline applies only to new D-8 applicants. Current D-8 holders will be allowed to switch to the D-9 visa with the $300,000 requirement waived. I was urgently trying to get the word out before the deadline but that is no longer the case.
That's good information, too. Thanks a lot, Jason!
기업투자(D-8)자격 취득(유지)에 대한 안내문
Regarding a Business Investment (D-8) qualifications to acquire (maintain) notice.
이 안내문은 기업투자(D-8) 자격의 취득 또는 유지를 희망하는 외국인 개인사업자에게 관련 사항을 안내하기 위한 것입니다.
This notice of qualifications required is being made to notify private investors (D-8) visa holders who wish to obtain or retain their current status.
가. 외국인 단독의 개인사업자(소위 ‘자영업자’)는 기업투자(D-8) 자격에 해당하지 않는다는 내용의 법원 판결에 따라 외국인 자영업자에게는 더 이상 기업투자(D-8) 자격의 취득 또는 유지가 허용되지 않고 무역경영(D-9) 자격을 부여할 예정임을 알려드립니다.
A. A court decision was made that a foreign sole proprietor (so-called 'self-employeed') no longer qualifies for a D-8 visa. Rather, they can obtain a trade manager's visa (D-9).
나. 따라서 기업투자(D-8) 자격의 취득(자격변경) 또는 유지(기간연장) 신청시 법무부 담당 공무원으로부터 부여받은 보완기간(3개월 이내) 내에 법인전환 완료 입증서류 등을 제출하거나 법인전환 의사가 없는 경우 무영경영(D-9) 자격변경을 신청하여야 함을 알려드립니다.
B. If you want to preserve your D-8 visa, a three month extension will be given so that you can convert your sole propietorship to a corporation and submit the proper documents. The other option is that you can convert your D-8 visa to a D-9 visa while operating as a sole proprietor.
다. 다음은 상세사항입니다.
① 기업투자(D-8) 자격을 소지하고 있는 자영업자가 기업투자(D-8) 자격을 유지하고자 하는 경우에는 보완기간 내에 법인 전환 이행 완료 후 그 입증 서류 등을 제출하여 기간연장을 받아야 합니다.
① If you are a sole proprietor who has a D-8 visa and you wish to renew your visa, you must submit the required documents of incorporation so that you can receive an extension of your visa.
② 기업투자(D-8) 자격을 소지하고 있는 자영업자가 법인전환 의사가 없는 경우에는 보완기간 내에 무역경영(D-9) 자격으로 자격변경을 신청하여 3억원 사업금액 요건을 면제받고 기존 사업금액으로 무역경영(D-9) 자격을 취득할 수 있습니다.
② Sole proprietors who have a D-8 visa who do not want to incorporate have three months to convert their visas to a D-9 visa. IMPORTANT: Normally, to qualify for a D-9 visa, you must invest $300,000 dollars. During this exemption period, this requirement will be WAIVED. THE OCTOBER 29 DEADLINE applies to the submission of application to convert.
※ 체류자격변경에 따른 수수료는 출입국관리법 시행규칙 제74조에 따름
※ The fees for this conversion is outlined in Article 74 of the Enforcement Rule of the Immigration Control Act.
③ 특히, 다른 체류자격에서 체류자격변경을 통해 기업투자(D-8) 자격 취득을 희망하는 경우에는,
③ These are the requirements for other visa holders who wish to convert to the D-8 visa.
㉮ 단기방문(C-3) 자격 등 다른 체류자격에서 자영업자 형태로 기업투자(D-8) 자격 취득을 희망하는 사람 중에서 관련 시행일(2012.10.29)전까지 기업투자(D-8) 자격으로 자격변경을 신청, 접수한 사람만이 무역경영(D-9) 자격 희망시 3억원 사업금액 요건을 면제(동 제도 시행전 기존 금액 : 1억원 이상)받고 무역경영(D-9) 자격을 취득할 수 있습니다.
A) For non D-8 visa holders, such as C-3 (short-term visit), if they desire to establish a sole-proprietorship, they will have to apply for a D-9 visa. In which case, a $300,000 capital investment is required.
㉯ 즉, 체류자격변경을 통해 자영업자 형태로 기업투자(D-8) 자격을 취득하고자 하는 사람이 2012.10.29일 기준으로 그 전에 기업투자(D-8) 자격의 신청이 없는 경우에는 새로이 마련된 무역경영(D-9) 자격 요건(3억원 사업금액 요건 등)이 적용됩니다
B) Further, for non D-8 visa holders, such as C-3 (short-term visit), if they want to establish a sole-proprietorship, they will have to apply for a D-9 visa. In which case, a $300,000 capital investment is required.
2012. 10. 17. 법무부 출입국외국인정책본부
For details, call the foreigner's immigration hotline (☏1345), or E-Government for foreigner's homepage (www.hikorea.go.kr) or the immigration homepage (www.immigration.go.kr) or call the immigration office of jurisdiction.
2012.10.17 Immigration Foreign Policy Division
Does anyone know if they are applying this equally to partnerships? Or only sole-proprietorships? I sense from reading the English translation, they really mean either form of non-corporate company, sole-proprietorship and partnerships. But it isn't 100% clear.
I am a D8 holder and got my new D9 visa issued today. The procedure was supportive and smooth. This is the best way to go for those that wish to stay as sole proprieter. I only paid the administrative fees - about 65,000W.
Thanks to SGBC and KBC for providing this information.
Roger - we just visited today. I was told, and a friend of mine who visited this morning was told as well, that there is some risk in applying for the D-9. They told us it wasn't an automatic thing - you formally were re-applying for a new visa type, and there was a chance they'd deny you! In which case, you would then be without any visa. Obviously you were successful. Did you sense that it was a mere formality? Or that it was a whole new process? Just curious.
It appears I have been extremely lucky with this sudden regulation change. I'm on a D-8 and have a partnership (equivalent to a sole proprietorship, but with multiple owners). We set about changing our company into a corporation a few months ago, for completely different reasons, oblivious of this pending rule change. In fact, one of the concerns was whether I would be able to keep the D-8 visa when the company changed form (I am, due to the fact we converted an existing company). Everything has just been finalized last week. Looks like I've squeaked by. But we'll be going to visit immigration tomorrow just to make 100% certain., and my renewal is almost due as well.
Thanks for this. I just heard this through the rumor mill this morning, and found the details here in your post.
First, just idle curiousity, what are the details of this court case which prompted the change? I'd be interested in reading about it.
Second, wasn't it a year or two back when the minimum investment for D-8 jumped to $100,000? And reading this notice, it implies the threshold is now $300,000? If so, that's a big jump in such a short time.
Yes, the D-8 FDI amount doubled to $100,000 last year, but the $300,000 is required for a D-9, trade manager's visa. That is being waived for those converting from a D-8. Roger is the second person to confirm that this easy process costs only 65K won and takes 10 days.
Did anyone (D-8 holder) receive a notice from immigration? I heard it through the rumor mill. I just called a friend who also has a D8, and he was unaware of the change. Would this kind of sudden rule change warrant at least a letter from immigraion, or perhaps an email or SMS to all the D8 holders? They keep our contact information on file.
You would think so, right? It's ridiculous that this notice was only posted on the Korean site and not on the English. Oh, and I found this out today. THE MONDAY, OCTOBER 29th DEADLINE ONLY APPLIES TO NEW D-8 APPLICANTS. Current holders will have the opportunity to convert to the D-9 visa with the $300K waiver when they need to renew their current visas. In essence, it allows current D-8 visa holders to 'bypass' the new rule that D-8 visa holders need to be incorporated. I've been frantically trying to pass the word everywhere because of this dumb 7 day deadline, but I was told directly by immigration that this is only for new D-8 applicants. Spread the word and join FEiK (Foreign Entrepreneurs in Korea) on fb.