WeChat was abuzz yesterday September 20th with teachers across Shenzhen chattering about police raiding their schools. We confirmed with authorities and found that in fact multiple foreigners were held for inquiry yesterday in raids that took place throughout the city. 


One particular topic of chatter among teachers online was a warning from one person that he heard the raids would continue for 30 more days. We asked the authorities about this. They denied the 30 days rumor, stating "That's not true. There is no set 30 days. The raids will continue. They will happen at random times in different places throughout the city, and not just at schools. If you are currently working illegally, we suggest you fix that immediately."

Police Raids across Shenzhen Detain Foreigners Suspected of Working Illegally

What Happens When Foreigners are Caught Working Illegally in China?

First of all, foreigners caught working illegally can be held up to 30 days for interrogation before any official punishment is issued. Punishments in these cases then typically include:

  • Individual fines from 5,000-20,000 RMB;
  • Detention of no more than 15 days; and or
  • Deportation and blacklisting for a minimum of one year and maximum of five years.  


Don't let this happen to you

If you need any information about how to get a valid working permit or other document, we suggest contacting the new Management and Service Center for Expats at 2667-8381. They have English-language guide and directions to assist you.

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