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Hadley Says

What Happens if You Overstay Your Hong Kong Visa Limit of Stay?

January 22nd, 2013

Posted in Employment Visas, Family Visas, Hadley Says…, Investment Visas, Special Programmes, The Hong Kong Visa Geeza, Visitor Visas /


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The Immigration Department are very strict about people who overstay their visa in Hong Kong.

If you are a visitor here and find yourself a day or 2 accidently overstaying, and have a good reason for this oversight, you may very well be able to sort it out at the airport as you depart.

However, you must appreciate that it is not recommended that you allow this to happen, nor that the Hong Kong ID will be happy with this sorry state of affairs.

In every other case, you must immediately report to Immigration Tower in Wanchai as soon as you realize that your current limit of stay has expired – visitor or resident alike.

The Hong Kong Immigration Department take the question of visa overstayers very seriously indeed – and long term overstayers could find themselves incarcerated for a period before being removed from Hong Kong – so under no circumstances should you allow an overstay to happen.

If you are a resident and have a genuine reason for slightly overstaying your visa (say because you’ve been in hospital) and there has been no-one around to help you sort your visa out, you can expect that the Department will be sympathetic and happy to help.

But everyone has a legal obligation to remain in Hong Kong subject to all their conditions of stay, including the limit or time imposed, and if you breach this, the consequences can be very serious indeed.

So please, take your visa expiry date as sacrosanct and plan your lives here around the immigration permissions you have been given – including the time allowed to stay.

More Stuff to Help You Along

The Visa Geeza on RTHK Radio 3 – July 2012

How a Hong Kong employment visa application can go completely wrong if you don’t know what you’re doing

Why do Hong Kong investment visas get denied?

Will he – or won’t he? Mike Tyson his criminal record and his Hong Kong visa

Will ImmD ever tell you why a Hong Kong visitor visa application has been refused?


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The Hong Kong Visa Geeza (a.k.a Stephen Barnes) is a co-founder of the Hong Kong Visa Centre and author of the Hong Kong Visa Handbook. A law graduate of the London School of Economics, Stephen has been practicing Hong Kong immigration since 1993 and is widely acknowledged as the leading authority on business immigration matters here for the last 24 years.

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