Does anyone know the truth about Foreign Expert Certificates? Is this <u>my</u> document? Do certain companies hold them to protect themselves from teachers disappearing? Do they need to keep them to return to the government at the end of the contract?
It is YOUR document. But you will need to hand it in when your contract runs out for your employer to cancel it.
The employer doesnt need to keep it but in fact, most of the training centers/schools do jeep them due to the lack of trust.
On the other hand, organisations/employers who are more proper than those training centres, such as universities, they don't keep it because it's yours.
Hope it helps.
While it's true that some schools may keep them due to a lack of trust, I think most schools keep them because it's an incredible headache to replace one if it's lost. You have to post an ad (in Chinese) in at least one local newspaper and a bunch of other red tape that I don't remember off the top of my head because thankfully it's never happened to me! In any case, be forewarned if you do decide to look after your own.
That being said, the only things I can think of that you may ever need a FEC for are exchanging foreign currencies (which requires a bunch of other ridiculously mafan de documents and is best done by a local friend or on the black market) and getting a new visa once you've gotten a new job. In the latter case, it's pretty important you have yours, so if you think some bad blood may go down between you and your current employer, make sure you get yours in hand before you burn any bridges.
@Monster: Thank you for your response.
@iraglassismyhero: Thank you for your response too. Yes, I am well aware of how ma fan it is to exchange money and send it home. But, it's gotta be done. I lived through it being moderately difficult, to extremely easy (Shanghai Expo), and now to extremely difficult. I dread going to the bank monthly, although I am getting better at it. What is this black market you speak of? Please do tell. Until I make a local friend (I am new to Chengdu) and trust them enough to show them my income and put my money through their account this option does not work for me.