Integrity Legal

2nd May 2009

Thailand Permanent Residence

Posted by : admin

For the long term expatriate living in Thailand, the question of Thai permanent residence invariably arises at some point. Many people wish to obtain permanent residence, but are overwhelmed by the difficulties involved in getting Thai PR. Hopefully this post will add some perspective on the subject.

Requirements for Obtaining Thai Permanent Residency

This post is not exhaustive, but merely gives the “broad strokes,” regarding Thai Permanent Residence. One of the major requirements for obtaining Thai permanent residence is that the applicant must have been in Thailand for a minimum of 3 consecutive years on Thai visa extensions.  A person present in Thailand using a Thai Multiple Entry Visa does not meet the requirement as the applicant must have been present using extensions. The Thai authorities are very strict on this requirement, even a one day gap in visa status can cost an applicant the right to apply for Thai permanent residence. For those seeking to obtain Thai Permanent Residence, scrupulous precautions should be taken to ensure that the prospective applicant maintains proper status.

There is also a salary requirement. The applicant must be able to prove a salary of at least 80,000 Thai baht per month at the time of application. Although this financial ability need only be shown at the time of filing, it is probably prudent to show a history of compensation at this rate, and the longer one can show this compensation history the better.

Thai permanent residence is somewhat odd in comparison to an American Green Card in that a Green Card confers the automatic right to work along with the right to remain in the United States. With Thai permanent residence, the right to work is not guaranteed, and as a result the permanent resident in Thailand must still obtain a work permit if he or she wishes to seek employment.  The Thai permanent residence application process is somewhat similar to the adjustment of status process for a US visa in that an applicant for Thai permanent residence is entitled to remain in Thailand while the Permanent Residence application is pending.

There is a basic Thai language requirement in order to obtain permanent residence, so the prospective applicant should study Thai in order to speak at a level of basic competence.  The prospective permanent resident is also subject to an interview and should be prepared to interview in Thai where possible.

After obtaining Thai permanent residency, the permanent resident should be cautious when leaving the country and make sure to obtain reentry permits (similar to US reentry permits) when preparing to depart the Kingdom in order to ensure that thy do not lose their permanent residency upon departure.

(Note: Nothing in this post should be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a Thai lawyer. No attorney client relationship is created between the author and any reader of this article.)


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One Response to “Thailand Permanent Residence”

  1. How I Lost Thirty Pounds in Thirty Days says:

    Hi, nice post. I have been thinking about this issue,so thanks for posting. I will definitely be coming back to your site.

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