New Content Daily Sign Up Here

Your Questions Answered

Will Time Spent in Prison in Hong Kong Break Continuity of Ordinary Residence for the Purposes of a Right of Abode Application After 7 years?

June 1st, 2022

Posted in Long Stay & PR, The Hong Kong Visa Geeza, Your Question Answered /


Will time spent in prison in Hong Kong break continuity of ordinary residence for PR purposes?


First Published on April 10, 2016


I am interested to know if there is anything I could do to strengthen the case of my application for the right of abode (permanent residency) and I am also unsure if having an application rejected could be to my detriment in any way.

Just to restate my background:

  • I have been resident in Hong Kong under a working visa since September 2008.
  • I resigned from my previous role in October 2014; my employment visa was valid until September 2015.
  • I served a 2 months custodial sentence between November & December 2014.
  • Since then I have been granted a 3 year working visa as of Q1 2015 for my current role.

I believe my 7 year anniversary has already accrued as of September 2015.

What do you think are my chances of successfully applying for right of abode are at this time, especially given that I was in prison for 2 months in the last 7 years.


Your time of imprisonment amounted to a complete break in your ordinary residence I’m afraid.

Please see the enclosed reply to LEGCO by the Security of Security in May 2005 speaking to this very question.

To this end, I’m afraid your 7 year continuity of ordinary residence only re-commenced when you secured your employment visa subsequent to the completion of your period of incarceration.

More Stuff You May Find Useful or Interesting

What can be said to constitute ‘Ordinary Residence’ for the purposes of a Hong Kong right of abode application?

How is my dependant visa impacted under the Admission of Mainland Talents and Professionals Scheme  if my sponsor-father goes back to China to work?

Can I get a Hong Kong dependant visa for my Chinese spouse presently resident on the Mainland?

Am I eligible for an extension to my Hong Kong dependant visa  if my PHKID holding spouse doesn’t actually live here any more?

What are your visa options if your marriage in Hong Kong has irretrievably broken down?


Please select the social network you want to share this page with:

The Hong Kong Visa Geeza (a.k.a Stephen Barnes) is a co-founder of the Hong Kong Visa Centre and author of the Hong Kong Visa Handbook. A law graduate of the London School of Economics, Stephen has been practicing Hong Kong immigration since 1993 and is widely acknowledged as the leading authority on business immigration matters here for the last 24 years.

Handbook Contents
Professional Service Options...