How should I apply for my kids to live in HK?

  1. #1

    How should I apply for my kids to live in HK?

    I hold a 3 star HK permanent ID card and a Chinese born citizen. I got my green card 3 years ago and have two kids since then. My husband is a US citizen. My husband would like to move to HK, so I am looking for answers as to how we can move the family.

    1) Can my kids get HK permanent residency (ID card) through me?

    2) Can my husband work there under the dependent visa without restrictions?

    3) Do I have to be physically there with the family the entire time(I have decent job in the US and don't really won't to give up).

    4) If I apply to become a US citizen now before we do any of the above, would it change anything at all?

    Thanks for your help!

  2. #2

    Join Date
    May 2008

    1) Depends on when they were born and I assume they were born in the United States.

    If you were born in HK before 1983 or were eligible for a BDTC passport at some point, and your kids were born before July 1, 1997, the kids should be eligible for a ROA/RTL ID card. (This is because they were permanent residents before the handover, and they can continue to be so, following the transitional provisions)

    Otherwise, the kids would have to have Chinese nationality in order to get ROA by birth, in your case, the kids would have to have been born before you got a US green card.

    If neither apply, then your kids need dependency visas.

    2) Yes, dependents (i.e. spouse, kids under 18) are not subject to stay in Hong Kong can work. Source: The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region - Immigration Department

    3) This one I am not sure. However I think it would mean you would have to be there, so you can demonstrate that you can "support" your dependents.

    4) No. You would continue to be regarded as a Chinese national in HK (and have ROA) unless you declare a change in nationality to the immigration department, even if you become a US citizen.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Aug 2008


    I am in a very similar situation. I am Chinese with HKID and US Citizenship and my husband is US citizen and both of our children were born in the states.

    I've tried to apply HK permenant residency for one of my daughter a few years ago but was told that she's not entitled to permanent residency immediately, but after 7 years. I did not persue at that time since we were only there for about a month or so.

    Anyway, I am considered relocating to HK myself and the kids first and hopefully my husband can join me in 6 months or so after he sorting out some issues in the states.

    It's a little unusal for your husband wanting to move to HK and not you. It'll definitely be more difficult for him without you being in there.

  4. #4

    Thanks Hairball and huash1 for your kind advice.

    To confirm, it really doesn't matter if I am a green card holder or American citizen, my kids have to get dependency visa and live there for 7 years to get permanent residency right (They were born after I got my green card)?

    It makes sense for me to apply and become a US citizen now so that if we do end up moving back to HK I won't have to come back here every 6 months. My concern was once I become US citizen, it will affect the dependency status of my kids. Now I have a better understanding.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Aug 2008

    I am not very familiar with HK Immigartion law but only speak from my own personal experience. If I were you, I would go ahead with my US citizenship application and I do not think it'll make any difference to your children's eligibility of HK residency. AS I said in my last post, I am a US citizen and my application for my daughter's residency was accepted two years ago, only I did not pursue further. Also you are right that if you do decide to move to HK with your husband, it would be better off with you being a US citizen as oppose to greencard holder on the U.S side, i.e. no restriction or hassle when you re-enter US after a long period of staying in HK or any other country for that matter.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Sha TIn

    I agree with huash1. You have to renew your permanent resident visa every 10 years so it would save a lot of trouble while being absent from the US for long periods of time if you become a US citizen. This will also guarantee consular protection from the US whenever you travel outside of China and Hong Kong.

    PRC law does not grant citizenship to children born of their citizens who settle overseas. Their definition of settled means not being subject to any condition of stay or if they have been permitted to stay indefinitely in the country despite not holding citizenship. Holding a green card falls under this category since you're not subject to immigration control in the US.

    Last edited by Aritaurus; 05-09-2008 at 05:47 AM.