The new Entry and Exit Administration Law of the People’s Republic of China (“Entry – Exit Law”) became effective on July 1, 2013. As explained in a previous Bryan Cave Alert, the Entry – Exit Law lays out the basic framework of entry and exit administration for foreigners and Chinese citizens. Among other changes, the law increases punishments on illegal foreigners and their employers. Several major changes are summarized below:
- Foreigners illegally residing in China (e.g. overstaying their visa) may receive fines of RMB 500 per day (up to RMB 10,000) or be detained for a maximum of 15 days. Previously, fines could not exceed RMB 5,000 and the maximum detention period was 10 days.
- Foreigners illegally working in China may receive a maximum fine of RMB 20,000 and be detained for up to 15 days. The employers of such foreigners may now be fined up to RMB 100,000 per foreigner. The previous maximum fines for foreigners and employers was RMB 1,000 and RMB 50,000, respectively.
- Residence permits may now be valid for a minimum of 90 days up to five years. Prior to July 1, the range was one to five years.
Employers in China should ensure their foreign employees are legally working in China to avoid the stricter fines and penalties under the Entry – Exit Law.