Career Venue > Contract, and Job Related Issues

FAQ (ARC, extending visa, severance, etc., etc.) UPDATED August 28, 2014

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Required Documents

- Your passport
- 2 colour passport photos (3cm x 4cm)
- Proof of Employment (provided by your school)
- The POE Business Registration Number (provided by your school)
- The application form
- Bring 10,000 KRW (cash only).

How long it takes for your ARC to arrive varies from city/province, and can take up to a month.

All visas are multiple-entry by default now; thus, there is no need to pay extra.

I lost by ARC. What do I do?

Go to the Immigration Office with your passport, 20,000원, 1 passport-sized photo, an application form (same as the original registration application, which you can pick up once you get there), and a report form (this is also found at the IO and is basically a statement telling when and how you lost your ARC).  You will need an additional 4,000원 for shipping, as they will mail the new card in 2 weeks.

I read in older posts that you had to file a report with the police to bring to the IO, but this is no longer necessary.

Extending Visa

You can apply for a visa extension within the last 60 days before your current visa expires.

If you're not renewing and wish to stay in the country after your contract expires, you need to apply for an extension (maximum one month). You can either go directly to Immigration Office  or do it online: --> Under the E-application tab --> The heading for is is Sojourn - Temporary extension of stay for departure of registered foreigners. 

If you're renewing, you'll need the following documents:

- Your passport
- Your Alien Registration Card
- Your new contract
- Proof of Employment, the POE Business Registration Number (ask your school for these)
- A processing fee: ~30,000 KRW (cash only)

Entrance Allowance

It is administered by National Institute for International Education (NIIED), not your school. You'll get it some time within the first month of your contract.


As of 2014 (EPIK), if you quit within 6 months, you have to pay 700,000 KRW.

You must give 60 days notice to your school, but the day you give notice is NOT the day you stop working. Thus, if you give notice 60 days prior to the six-month mark, you will not have to pay back 700,000 KRW.


Severance is administered by your school for EPIK and GEPIK.

For renewing teachers, your renewal bonus (2,000,000 KRW) will be paid within one month. Your severance, however, will not be paid until your final contract is completed with MOE.

For departing teachers, you may request your school to give you your severance with your last paycheck/paycheque, but they are under no obligation to do so. If they say they can't, bear in mind that it is probably because they haven't received the funds from the Office of Education yet. It can take up to one month for the severance to be wired to your home bank account, but 14 Korean working days is typical. It may or may not come with the exit allowance.

If, for whatever reason, your school won't be wiring the money to you, you should ask your Korean bank how to transfer the funds from your Korean bank account to your home bank account.

Exit Allowance

Like severance, you can request for the exit allowance to be paid on payday, but they're under no obligation. If they say they can't, bear in mind that it is probably because they haven't received the funds from the Office of Education yet.  Like severance, it can up to a month, but 14 Korean working days is typical. It may or may not come with the severance.

Pension Refund

The refund is currently available to citizens of Australia, Canada and the United States.

Go to the National Pension Service website at| English | Foreigners and Lump-sum Refund. This page will explain when and how to fill out the necessary form. You can apply for the refund no sooner than 30 days from your departure date.

It usually takes one month for the pension to be wired to your home bank account. If you don't want to wait, you can pick it up at the airport. Note that you'll likely get a less favorable exchange rate by exchanging the money at the airport.

For more details about picking it up at the airport:


NOTE: You may not receive the entire amount if you choose this option. For example, if your contract ends August 25, yyour employer should pay pension for the month of August by September 10. This amount will be processed and added to your balance a few days later.. As you can see, if you depart shortly after September 10 or any time before that date, you will not receive the August contribution amount AT THE AIRPORT. This remainder will be wired to your home account or sent to you via check/cheque (whichever you prefer).

Also note that the airport will literally give you CASH (currency of your choosing: USD, CAD, HKD, etc.), not a check/cheque. Just a warning for those who might feel uncomfortable carrying large amounts of cash on them.


○ A foreigner who is scheduled to depart for his own country through Incheon Airport within a month ○ Airport Payment is possible only in case ex-employer makes a disqualification report to National Pension Service at least one day before the departure date. (All this means is that your contract must end before the date of your departure. There is no need for you to ask your employer to make a disqualification report.)[/b]

※ If you are to depart from Korea on Saturday, Sunday or Korean legal(official) holiday, you can not apply for Airport Payment. Therefore, you should choose alternative options such as receiving through domestic account or overseas remittance.

※ Airport Payment is applicable only in case flight's departure time is from 11:00 through 24:00

○ Select 「Airport Payment」 when you apply for Lump-Sum Refund

○ Applicants should hand in another form of bank account for additional payment in case non-payable reasons happen on the departure date.


① Hand in forms of "Application for Lump-Sum Refund" and "Application for Lump-Sum Refund at the Airport", and then receive a filing receipt : all regional Office of the National Pension Service(except for Airport Office of NPS)
Office hours 09:00~18:00

② Receive the "Receipt of Currency Exchange" and "Direction for Payment of Lump-Sum Refund" from Incheon Airport Office after handing in the filing receipt, passport and flight ticket on the date of departure
Office hours 09:00~17:00

③ Receive the "Receipt of Currency Exchange" from Shinhan Bank Incheon International Branch after handing in "Direction for Payment of Lump-sum Refund" and a passport
Office hours 09:00~17:30

④ Withdraw the exchanged money from currency exchange booth of Shinhan Bank(in front of 29th boarding gate) after handing in "Direction for Payment of Lump-Sum Refund", "Receipt of Currency Exchange" and a passport
Office hours 09:00~21:00

When will I get the renewal offer?

Eight to ten months into your current contract--the timing varies from POE/MOE, so don't worry if you know somebody in another city or province who got it.

Note that your evaluation score must be at least 70 percent to be offered a contract extension. Your score is determined by co-teacher(s) and vice principal. If your score is below 70 percent, you will not get rehired through EPIK.

What if I want to stay another year, but in a different city/province?

Same province, different city

You simply have to inform your POE and they might accommodate. You can also request to go to a different school (different level or same level, but different school), but there's no guarantee that they'll accommodate.

Different POE/MOE

You have to apply from scratch again (criminal record check, etc.) and have to ask your employer for a letter of release. You will also receive a settlement allowance of 300,000 KRW from the new POE/MOE (Article 11, clause 4) and you WILL receive a pay raise. However, you will not get the following:

-renewal bonus (2,000,000 KRW)
-ONE calendar weeks of additional vacation (calendar days includes holidays and weekends)
-entrance allowance


Article 14

-Ten WORKING days in the winter and eight working days in the summer (this is in general, but other provinces such as Gangwondo get more). These days DO NOT include weekends and days when the school is closed (i.e., statutory holidays and the school anniversary). Unfortunately, if a holiday falls on a weekend, you will not be given a make up day.

-Technically, the school is not obligated to give you these days consecutively, so it is theoretically possible for them to break it up.  For example, in the winter, they could, in theory, give 5 days off one week, 3 days off another week, and 2 days off another week. (total of 10 days).

-You must get your school's consent at least 15 calendar (calendar includes weekends and holidays) days in advance from the start of your vacation (clause 2).

Just because your co-teacher, VP, etc. agreed that you can take vacation on X date weeks in advance, there is no guarantee that they'll accommodate, even if it is in  writing. If the requested  vacation period ends up interfering with an English program (e.g., English camp), the school can move your vacation to another date (clause 1)

(This is what happened in winter '09 in Daejeon. Many teachers had to cancel their vacation plans because the MOE suddenly decided to have a city-wide English camp (Hermes) during winter recess.)

-For the days you're NOT on vacation, you are obligated to come to school (i.e., "deskwarm") even though there are no classes or English camps. Some principals are lenient and may tell you not to come in, but technically this is a contract violation. Please do not brag about not having to deskwarm to other NETs as it might eventually cause all NETs to do something worse than deskwarming (who knows what the Education Offices can think of).

-If you're late or leave early on school days (illness, bank, immigration work, health check, etc.),  this will count towards your vacation days. Eight accumulated hours = 1 day.  So if you left early four hours one day and four hours another day, one vacation day will be reduced.
However, if the semester total is fewer than eight hours, no vacation days will be reduced.

-Renewing with the same POE/MOE gives you one calendar week of vacation. Remember calendar includes holidays and weekends. Again, it doesn't have to be consecutive, so the school can, in theory, break up these days if it interferes with an English program. This renewal vacation can also be banked for the next school vacation if necessary, but it must be taken within the first six months from the first day of the new contract. If they are assigned after the six-month period, there's a very good possibility you will lose those vacation days even if the school agreed, in writing, to give you the vacation period after the six-month mark. The Office of Education can overturn the school's decision as it violates the contract.

Can I get time off during the semester?

Ultimately it's up to the principal. If s/he agrees, the school will either deduct your nearest entitled vacation days or not pay you for the days you're taking off. You can request your preference, but , again, it's ultimately up to the principal.

To increase your chances, say your mother or father is getting re-married since Koreans will probably view it as more important than, say, a brother's wedding.

Leaving Korea, but need to extend beyond date of ARC expiration date.

The "Temporary Extension" application is for 30 days.

You need to apply for it (either on-line or in person).

You need your ARC, passport and application.

If you do it on-line you need more than 3 working days; instructions below.

If you do it in person you can do up as late as 24 hours before expiry of your ARC.

If there is any chance you may want to work again then it might be better to get a D10 (50k won). That will allow you up to 6 months to make up your mind, find a new job and change back to an E2 without the need for all new documentation.

IF you need the extra 30 days (beyond your 13 months) to complete your contract or continue working for a short time with the same employer then an E2 extension is required.


go to (internet explorer only...)

if it asks you to install something click "no"

on the menu near the top of the page, click "e-application" -> "file an application"

click the little mouse icon next to "Temporary extension of stay for departure of registered foreigners"
(click "no" if prompted to install something again)

read the terms and click "i agree", "apply (principal)" and "apply"
(click "no" if prompted to install something again)

you'll need to create an account.  click "sign up/join" on the left menu to do so.
under "private membership", click "foreigners"

give them your info (passport, ARC card number, etc)

once you get an account, file your e-application*
*you'll need to submit a .jpg file of your flight info.
to do this, I:
-opened my email to my flight info
-pressed the 'print screen' button my keyboard (this copies the current display on your screen to the computer's clipboard)
-opened MS Paint
-press Ctrl+v (paste)
-select the part of the page you need and press Ctrl+c (copy)
-click file->new and Ctrl+v
-save as a .jpeg/.jpg and attach this to your application


I had to wait a few days, but you can check in on the website by clicking 'Application Result' and entering your log-in info.

When it's been approved, it will say "Granted" and have a clickable button to print your "전자민원 확인서 Certificate of Permission for e-Application".  Bring this with you at the airport!"

Just a quick check, about the renewal bonus total

If I am on level 1 as from feb 2012 (2.5million)

I should legally be entitled to 2.0 renewal bonus
                                               2.5 Severance pay
                                               2.5 normal months salary
total of 7,000,000 in one month? this correct? will this be taxed on or not?

I could be wrong, but if you are renewing, you won't get the severance until after you finish the new contract (or if you leave before it is finished, you should get a severance that calculates how many months you've worked for SMOE - since you finished the first 12 month contract).

So with severance pay, i should only get it when I leave Korea for good, so after three contracts of being here I would get severance x3, when I leave korea?


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