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2018-03-12 09:00
Ministry of the Interior Passes More Relaxed Regulations for the Assessment Criteria of No Illicit or Illegal Behavior Regarding Naturalization Application
The Ministry of the Interior in an internal meeting recently passed the draft of the "Regulations for the Assessment Criteria of No Illicit or Illegal Behavior" regarding a naturalization applicant's moral character requirement. The regulations, formulated by experts, scholars and impartial individual pursuant to the Nationality Act amended and enacted on Dec. 21, 2016, are more relaxed compared to the "Certified Marital Status and Principles for the Assessment Criteria of Good Moral Character." The regulations were enacted and promulgated on Oct. 24, 2017.

The Ministry of the Interior had expressed that the regulations were formulated after thorough discussions, taking into consideration of the rights and interest of new residents and social stability.

The four types of assessed illicit and illegal behaviors are:

1. The applicant is subject to a decision of deferred prosecution of a final judgment of detention, fine, or suspension of sentence due to the commitment of a crime, except for negligent crime.

2. The applicant conducts any of the seven violating behaviors defined by the Social Order Maintenance Act, and is subject to final decision of detention or fine that has not yet been executed or paid.

3. The applicant fails to perform his/her legal duty to furnish maintenance and/or support to his/her spouse or minor children, and is subject to a final judgment of the court, or the applicant fails to perform such legal duty to furnish said maintenance without a justified reason as evidence by facts.

4. The applicant is a habitual domestic violence offender, and is subject to a final judgment of the court, or the applicant is the aforementioned offender as evidenced by facts, except for the fact that the applicant deserves sympathy, or that the applicant conducts the behavior for self-defense, or that the occurrence of the situation shall not be attributed to the applicant.

The Ministry of the Interior pointed out, very discreet methods are applied to assess an illicit or illegal behavior, which is a final judgment of the court, and the ministry will invite experts, scholars and impartial individuals to jointly assess illicit or illegal behaviors evidenced by facts. In addition, a foreigner may be regarded as no illicit or illegal behavior when the execution of imposed penalty is completed, or when no aforementioned illicit or illegal behavior has been conducted within two to three years, and, in such a case, he/she can still apply for naturalization.

The Ministry of the Interior emphasized that the ministry has an open-mind and welcomes foreigners to apply for naturalization. In the meantime, foreigners are reminded to abide by the law and order while residing in this country and to jointly maintain harmony and prosperity of the society.

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