A lawyer previously filed an administrative lawsuit after his request to remove the names of his parents and spouse and military service status from his national identification card was rejected. The Taipei High Administrative Court ruled in his favor on June 8. However, the Ministry of the Interior said it cannot accept this ruling and will appeal.
A lawyer named Chen Hung-chi previously applied for a new national identification card at the household registration office in Taipei's Wenshan District, and requested a card without the names of his parents and spouse and military service status. His request was rejected, and he decided to file an administrative lawsuit. The Taipei High Administrative Court ruled that the requirement that ID cards include the names of parents and spouses and military service status is inconsistent with the intent of the Household Registration Act, and ordered the household registration office to issue a card without this information. In response, the Ministry of the Interior said it cannot accept the ruling and will appeal.
Lin Ching-chi, Director, Dept. of Household Registration, MOI: “We of course cannot accept this ruling. That's very clear. First of all, the national identification card is not for publicly showing to others. It's used to prove one's identity. You can't prove your identity with just your ID card number and name, because you have to look at the relationships to determine whether this person is you. The view of the Ministry of the Interior and local household registration offices is the same, and we will appeal.”
The MOI said the government-issued ID card is an important way to prove one's identity and enjoys high public credibility. If people are allowed to choose what information they want to show, the different versions could result in confusion when interpreting the data and seriously affect the credibility. Legislators had different views on this issue.
William Tsengk, Legislator (KMT): “The overarching direction is that you need to include the names of parents and spouse. However, household registration offices may authorize exceptions due to special circumstances, exceedingly special circumstances.”
Cheng Yun-peng, Legislator (DPP): “The information on ID cards must be relevant. I think, based on current views, it's primarily to provide personal information. The less other information such parents' names there is, the better.”
Digital ID cards were supposed to be launched in 2021, but the plan was halted due to concerns about personal information leakage. It won't be relaunched until after the Executive Yuan passes a dedicated law. The MOI's Department of Household Registration says the law is still being discussed and an organization dedicated to information security may have to be established in the future before it can progress.