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ResourcesVisa & Immigration LawThailand Immigration LawWill Thai Work Permit Rules Be "Ignored"?

Will Thai Work Permit Rules Be "Ignored"?

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests, we are discussing Work Permits here in Thailand. For those who are unaware, foreign nationals in Thailand are not allowed to work without specific work authorization. Thai Law prohibits foreign nationals from working in Thailand without a Work Permit. Now depending on circumstances, a Work Permit usually it is going to be its own document for work authorization which is usually sort of for lack of a better term piggybacked on top of a Business Visa so a person will have a Business Visa here in Thailand and then they will have work authorization which will be, I hesitate to say attached to it because they are two different things, but they are kind of inextricably linked, they kind of go hand in hand. You have to have one to have the other which can lead to some catch 22 situations which we often see here in Thailand. Long story short, in standard cases we usually see a Business Visa with a Work Permit. In some cases you may see somebody have a Marriage Visa and have a Work Permit with their Marriage Visa, again it is going to be circumstantially dependent. As we have noted in other videos, the so-called Smart Visa here in Thailand has work authorization inherent to it, you don't need to have a Work Permit and a Smart Visa; a Smart Visa comes with inherent work authorization. Now we have been talking recently about proposed visas such as the so-called Long-Term Residency. There is supposedly going to be some sort of employment authorization associated with certain very high-end sort of iterations of that type of visa but none of that has come to fruition yet and until we actually see some concrete rules and regulations, it is probably not best to speculate on that at this time. 

I was thinking about making this video after reading a recent article in the Pattaya Mail, that is, the article is titled: Thailand's 10-year visa and property proposals "won't entice many". I thought of making this video, I urge those who are watching this go check out that article, a lot of information in there and I am just going to quote a small excerpt but I do kind of want to quote this because I think there is a misnomer contained in here. I am not really trying to point anybody out or call anybody out or do that but oftentimes people will kind of say things are right things, I think that you can be kind of flippant about things but when the rubber hits the road, this can have tremendous negative ramifications for those who don't understand this stuff. So quoting directly: "Moreover Elite unlike LTR does not require any medical insurance; Elite does not carry an automatic Work Permit but recent changes in Immigration protocol mean that attending business meetings, working for short periods in Thailand and even some digital nomads appear to be exempt or "ignored" categories." No, that is just simply not true. Now the so-called recent changes in Immigration protocol, it is not that recent. It is going back to about 2017, 2018 there were some changes, there were Decrees put out, Emergency Decrees specifically associated with work authorization. Most notably they did liberalize work authorization location as well as job description issues, and yes there were some changes to relevant regulations regarding things like Work Permits specifically in the context of statutorily required business meetings in a corporate context. We discussed this going way back, not a lot of people were watching the channel at this time because there are a lot of misnomers there people were saying things like, "Oh well if you have got an Amity Treaty Company you don't need Work Permit," and they were basing that notion on the fact that yeah they had said, things like a shareholder meeting we are not going to consider that work, that is just something pro forma that must be done per Thai Law. If somebody shows up and attends that meeting we are not going to say that they were working. But virtually anything else as we have discussed at length in other videos on this channel can be construed as work and for this reason that is a total misnomer. There is not going to be anything associated with working in Thailand that is ever going to be ignored. It has been my experience that the Immigration and Labour Department are very assiduous in looking for folks that are working illegally in Thailand. It is not wise to be cavalier regarding work authorization. Thailand Elite Visas are not work authorized; to the best of my knowledge these proposed LTR Visas for the most part are not going to be work authorized although there will be a specific subset, it is my understanding somebody who invests like 40 million Baht in Thailand for example into real estate, yeah it might be possible to gain work authorization that way. But as far as true work authorization yeah you are still going to need to get a Business Visa and Work Permit if you want to work here in the Kingdom of Thailand.