DISSIDENT Lau Shan-ching is likely to be banned from next month's district board elections, because of his absence from Hong Kong during the past 10 years. He was in jail in China during much of that period for his role in the pro-democracy movement. During a meeting with the Chief Electoral Officer Carrie Willis yesterday, Mr Lau, released from jail in 1991, failed to obtain a formal reply on whether his nomination was valid. But he was told he should have taken into account the legal advice issued in March before deciding whether to submit his nomination. The advice, issued upon Mr Lau's request, reads: ''It would be necessary to argue that you remained ordinarily resident in Hong Kong during the period you were in detention in China on the basis that you were detained against your will and prevented from returning to Hong Kong.'' However, the advice made it clear that the long period of departure meant that this argument could not stand. ''Short periods of absence from Hong Kong during the qualifying period may not affect residency depending on the circumstances. But the period of your absence is of such length that it cannot be bridged by this argument,'' it says. A court would find that Mr Lau was not ordinarily resident in Hong Kong during that period, according to the advice issued by the Attorney-General's chamber. Ms Willis said there was no objective definition for ordinary residency, although the circumstances of departure as well as the links with Hong Kong during the absence would be taken into account. She remained tight-lipped on the decision, which will be announced today by the Kwai Tsing Acting District Officer, Apollonia Liu. She said Mrs Liu had sought further legal advice from the Attorney-General's chamber on receiving Mr Lau's application, but refused to disclose any details. Ms Willis maintained it was the returning officer's job to deliberate and announce the results of the candidates' validity. She rejected suggestions that the decision should not rest with a district officer, added that the Registration and Election Office would provide sufficient backing in the decision-making process. During the meeting, Mr Lau's wife, Christina Tang Yuen-ching, challenged the consistency of the office's decision by citing her own case in 1985. Ms Tang, a defeated candidate in that year's district board election, was allowed to contest, despite her stay in Britain between 1968 and 1979. Ms Tang said she would stand in the election if Mr Lau was not allowed to do so. Mr Lau said yesterday the office should have considered the nature of his conviction - for ''counter-revolutionary'' activities - which had directly led to his absence from Hong Kong. He rejected the electoral provisions, saying they neglected the differences between the legal systems of different countries. He is awaiting advice from his own barrister in support of his case. A Meeting Point candidate, Danny Chin Ching-man, was told yesterday that he could not stand as a candidates because of his six-year absence from Hong Kong during the past decade. Mr Chin wanted to contest the Tsui Ping seat in Kwun Tong. and said he had already spent more than $10,000 on the election campaign. He will meet the Kwun Tong district officer today.