Last year, an Indian had to break off his stay in Korea, which was originally planned to last two years. The reason? He was caught driving under the influence of alcohol.
The 30-year-old man had a D-3 visa, which is issued to foreign production workers at overseas branches of Korean companies who are receiving vocational training here.
He paid the levied fine of 5 million won (US$3,830) for drunk driving. But that was not all. He also received an official order from the Korean immigration authorities to leave the country.
Drunk driving is one of the most common criminal activities leading to the forced exit of foreigners, according to Kim Ju-hyeong, a senior attorney at Majung law firm who represented the Indian national.
Here are some questions and answers from Kim about the immigration service’s administrative order expelling a foreigner from Korea.
Kim Ju-hyeong, chief attorney at Majung (Courtesy of Kim)
Q. What crimes can result in an exit order?
Regardless of the type of crime, three rules apply. You could be sentenced to leave if 1) you are fined more than 3 million won; 2) Your fines received in the past five years exceed 5 million won; and 3) you have been fined or more severely fined twice in the last two years or three times in five years.
For sexual and physical offenses, an offense resulting in a fine of less than 3 million won could result in the same consequence.
Drug problems are to be avoided as the Korean authorities are usually very strict with such matters. Recently, there have been many cases in which foreign criminals have been issued exit orders despite prosecutors deciding not to charge them.
Q. What other situations might result in an exit order?
Foreign nationals are advised to have a thorough understanding of local immigration regulations to avoid accidentally becoming illegal migrants and ending up being deported from the country
According to the current Immigration Control Law, foreigners staying in Korea for more than 90 days are required to register for a foreigner registration card at a local immigration office within 90 days of arrival.
Any change in ARC information, such as address or passport number, must be reported within 14 days of the change.
Meanwhile, any foreigner wishing to stay in Korea beyond their approved length of stay must apply for a stay extension four months before their visa expires.
Failure to comply with these rules could result in someone accidentally immigrating illegally and being deported.
Of course, undocumented immigrants who entered Korea without a valid visa or those who illegally invite other foreigners will be deported.
Kim Ju-hyeong is a Senior Attorney at Majung Law Firm with expertise in immigration and worker’s compensation law. Kim is one of the members of the Law Firm’s Legal Advice Center for Foreigners, which consists of lawyers with practical work experience in immigration cases. — ed.
By Choi Jae-hee ([email protected])