***NEW E2 VISA REGULATIONS AS OF January 2012*** [updated 01.03.16]
As of January 2011 new E2 visa regulations went into effect and now the visa process is more complicated and there are more documents needed in order to process the visa, which has added about two and a half weeks onto the visa process. Before the new visa rules went into effect, to obtain an E2 visa there were two steps in the visa process... Some document requirements have been modified as listed below.
Before January 2011 the process was to overnight all of your visa documents to Korea. Now some things have changed ( school contract (signed),  passport photocopy,  notarized photocopy of the diploma with apostille notarization [or notarization by Korean Consulate for Canadians and from your Embassy if in Korea]  official sealed transcripts [are no longer required, but public schools may request a set-so order 1 set],  3 passport photos,  visa application form (signed), and  have paid the visa processing fee.
One must now have *criminal background check*(local county and state wide criminal background checks are NOT acceptable). [NOTE: as of 01.01.2011 all CBC's must be nationwide (Click here to find out how to apply for a) FBI check for US Citizens[can take up to 12 weeks] and (Click here to find out how to apply for a)RCMP check for Canadians. Updated on 07.20.15] Every state only has one Apostille that can notarize your police background check.
For more information on Apostille go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apostille. Korea, USA, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and the UK are all signators of this agreement. NOTE:Canada did not sign this agreement, so they can not have a document notarized by an Apostille, so Canadian teachers will have to get their criminal background check from the RCMP, which takes 1-3 months to obtain, so apply as early as possible. USA residents need to order a CBC from the FBI which takes up to 12 weeks.
So, in other words, if a country signed this agreement then any document that has the signature of a state government official (including a notary) can be notarized by the state Appostille, then it must be recognized as a valid document in any country that has signed the agreement. After receiving your criminal background check you will have to send the document to your state Apostilles with a check ($2-$20 dollars) and a letter stating why you need the document notarized and to which country this document will be being used in.
One must now also have  *a medical questionnaire* filled out and signed by the E2 visa applicant. We will send you this form after a job has been offered to you. This questionnaire is going to ask you if you are 1. an alcoholic or 2. a drug addict. You will need to fill out this yes or no questionnaire and sign it. Within a month after arriving in Korea you will then have to have a physical and a drug test. If you fail the drug test you will not be allowed to stay in Korea, schools have a 90 days to submit the physical/drug test to the immigration, so if one fails the test it is possible to wait a few weeks and retake the exam, but this is highly discouraged. If you are a habitual drug user and can not stop taking drugs two months before you go to Korea, then please do not waste our nor the schools time by continuing the hiring process.
An interview at a Korean Consulate[is no longer required as of 2011]
If after reviewing all of your documents we are satisfied with your education and experience, then we will set up a phone interview. During the phone interview (about 30-60 minutes) we will allocate about 5-10 minutes to asking you about your past experience, personality & etc, with half of the time allocated to Q&A (10-20 min) and the other 5-10 minutes we will talk about the program and living in Korea. If we ask you to have a phone interview, please be sure to read the entire website again, especially about the 'TEIK pre-interview', 'hiring process' and the'FAQ' sections because it saves a lot of time explaining and leaves us more time for deeper conversation about Korea, teaching there and getting to know each other.
To start the application process please send us your application, resume, current picture (head-shot smiling) and if you have passed my interview we will then needscans of your passport (picture/signature page), diploma and National criminal background check [CBC or CRC]. You can email all of the scanned documents to us before the interview if you prefer.
The reason we ask for the scans of your passport, diploma and CBC/CRC is because we need to verify that you do have them in hand and also to verify full name and birth-date for the airline ticket. We know that some people are very nervous to give this information, but to process the visa for you we will need the originals sent to us after you have been offered a job to be able to start the visa process. The visa process is spelled out in great detail on our website.
We have positions all over Korea (check our job boards here) and we work with private and public schools, but mostly we work with schools in Seoul, Ilsan, Bucheon, Bundang, Seoul suburbs, Daegu, & Daejeon. I taught, placed teachers and lived in Bucheon (one of the three large satellite cities of Seoul also including Bundang and Ilsan). Bucheon, Ilsan and Bundang are new satellite cities of Seoul and they are only 20-45 minutes by subway to downtown Seoul ($1 subway ticket) and it's so cheap to get around and the cost of living is really low, and with free housing you'll be able to save a lot of money since you don't have to pay any rent.
After we have your resume, application and current photo (head-shot smiling), and if we are satisfied with your paperwork we'll set up a phone interview with one of our TEIK coordinators (all have previously taught English in Korea) to discuss the position and it will be a chance for you to ask us questions as well. Before we speak to a school about you we will need scans of your diploma, passport (signature/photo page), and national criminal background check [CBC/CRC]. After the phone interview we'll speak with our schools in Korea about you and send them your information for their review.
If the school is satisfied with your teacher profile they will want to have a phone interview or they may make an offer of employment without one based on our recommendation and your paperwork. At that time you would review the offer then decide to either except it and sign the contract. Then it would be on to securing the visa and setting up the flight arrangements. We charge no fees to help you find a job and we are just making an introduction to a school on your behalf. The only fee we charge is an 'optional fee' to process your E2 visa for you (includes all over night charges internationally and domestically, visa application fee at consulate, visa uprade to a multiple entry and handling charge). Please note that we do not employ you, nor do we have anything to do with your employment agreement between you and a prospective school.
Information on the National
Criminal Background Check
Update: As of January 1st, 2012 criminal background checks must be no more than
3 months old when submitted.
Update: As of April 10th, some consulates request another photocopy of the
background check. Be sure to keep a photocopy of the background check.
Major Update as of August 1st, 2010:
US Citizens must now provide an FBI level check in order to obtain
a visa to teach in Korea. Since the FBI check takes up to 12 weeks, applicants
should apply for and obtain the FBI-level check as early as possible in the
process. NEW [02.14.14]: If you use an FBI approved handler your CBC could be processed in only 2 weeks.
IMPORTANT: When sending in the
application for FBI check, make sure to include a separate note stating:
"Please provide an FBI seal and signature from a Division Officer for the
purpose of obtaining a Federal Apostille."
(You will need to make sure this is done as the FBI check needs
this signature on it in order for you to be able to get an Apostille, which is
the next step. It must be requested specifically and can just be written on
a piece of paper and included in the application.)
These guys got my teacher’s FBI CBC apostilled within 1 week for
$45 (including mailing time!!), so I am recommending teachers to use this
service, instead of mailing it out to Washington DC…
You must request a regular criminal background check and then have
it notarized by the Korean Consulate assigned to your area. Here is a
step-by-step of the process:
Visit your local police
department and request a Criminal Background Check. Note: As of June 2009
they are no longer requesting the Vulnerable Sector Search. Just a regular
background check is acceptable.
Once your police check is
notarized, you must bring it or mail it to your closest Korean consulate
for their stamp of approval. The cost for this is $2.20-$4.40 (cash
or money order) If you live too far, you can mail it, including the
fee and the criminal background check along with a copy of your passport.
If going in person, be sure to bring your passport as well. Here is the
information depending on where you are:
You must receive a criminal background check from your local
police department and then have it verified as per the instructions of your
local Korean Embassy. Please call the consulate or embassy in your area
in order to be updated on their latest requirements for the criminal background
of Internal Affairs, Authentication Unit By
Courier Authentication Unit Level 13 Prime Property Tower 86-90 Lambton Quay Wellington 6011 New Zealand
Standard post Authentication Unit c/o The Translation Service PO Box 805 Wellington 6140 New Zealand Telephone: +64 (4) 470 2928 Fax: +64 (4) 470 2921 E-mail:
Contact person: Carlee Reid Website - http://www.dia.govt.nz/apostille Price: NZD $40 per Apostille certificate NZD
$15 per copy Certificate (Apostille of identical document / same
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