If you plan to work in Thailand, your first step should be acquiring the right working permit. In this article, we’ll be going through the process step-by-step to give you and your company all the information you need to acquire the proper documentation.
By following our guide, you’ll have a full understanding of which visas and work permits are available, what the application process is, and what documentation you will need in order to apply for a work permit.
In order to legally work in Thailand, the land of smiles, you will need to apply for and obtain a Non-Immigrant Visa Category “B”. Once you have your visa, you’ll be granted access to enter Thailand and you’ll be able to apply for your work permit.
While the Non-Immigrant Visa allows you access to Thailand, the Work Permit is what you’ll need to work while you are there.
Once you’ve applied for your permit, the process takes around seven days to complete and includes a full background check.
It is worth noting that Thailand does not allow foreigners the right to work in all professions as per the Alien Employment Act of 1978. Before applying for a visa and work permit, you should check to see if the business you intend to conduct is allowed in Thailand.
What Kind of Work Visas Are Available?
There are two primary types of work visas available to foreigners looking to enter Thailand. Both are Non-Immigrant B Business Visas.
One of these visas allows individuals to both enter Thailand and conduct business while they are there.
The other visa is for workers looking to come to Thailand to obtain work.
You will be asked which specific Non-Immigrant B Business Visa you are applying for during the application process and it is extremely important you apply for the right one.
How Much Does it Cost?
A Non-Immigrant B Business Visa= will cost you 2,000 baht for a single-entry visa or 5,000 baht for a multiple-entry visa.
Are There Any Restrictions on Who Can Apply?
Thailand actually has a number of stipulations related to who can apply for a work permit. In order to qualify, an employer must fulfill the following conditions:
- The company must have at least 2 million baht in capital. This amount drops to 1 million baht if the employee in question is already married to a Thai national.
- The company needs to be registered to trade in Thailand.
- The company needs to be registered for a tax ID and VAT registration.
- Each company is allowed a maximum of one non-Thai employee for every four Thai employees already employed.
- Must not have exceeded the cap of 10 work permits per-company.
- The employee in question must have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree and previous work experience in the area they intend to work in.
- The potential employee must also be free of any serious diseases or addictions.
These restrictions can be circumvented if the parent company in questions is being promoted by the Thai Board of Investment (BOI). However, the BOI does require justification on why non-Thai employees are needed.
If the company is not a registered company in Thailand, then the amount of capital required per employee they want to get a work permit for goes up to 3 million baht.
How Do I Apply
The application process for a work permit differs depending on whether the applicant’s parent company is being promoted by the BOI.
If your company is not being promoted by BOI, you will need to apply for a work permit at the Ministry of Labor in Bangkok. The address is Khwaeng Din Daeng, Khet Din Daeng, Bangkok 10400
Companies being promoted by the BOI can instead apply at the One-Stop Service Center at Chamchuri Square in Bangkok. The address is 319 Phayathai Rd, Khwaeng Pathum Wan, Khet Pathum Wan, Bangkok 10330
What Documentation Is Required?
In order to apply for a work permit, there are specific documents, from both from the potential employee and the company looking to employ them, that are required
For the Company
The company will need to provide the following documents:
- Company Registration Department Certificate
- A list of company shareholders (certified by the Commercial Registration Department)
- VAT certificate (Phor Phor 20)
- Proof of VAT filings (VAT filings Phor Phor 30)
- Withholding tax of the company (Phor Ngor Dor 1)
- A current financial statement.
- A photocopy of the company director’s passport and work permit with a signature affixed.
- The location of the main office.
- A letter of employment stating the position, job requirements, contract duration, and salary of the applicant.
- Employment agreement.
The intended employee will need to provide the following:
- Three copies of a 2-inch by 2-inch passport photo.
- An up to date medical certificate (last 30 days).
- Their original passport.
- A Non-immigrant visa with a signed copy
- Departure card TM.6
- A letter of employment from the company in question.
- A transcript of their degree and the degree certificate.
- Proof of their home address in Thailand.
If the applicant is currently married to a Thai national, they will also need to provide the following:
- The employee’s marriage certificate.
- The employee’s spouse’s identity card and registration number.
- A copy of every page of the employee’s passport. This should include both sides of the passport jacket.
If some of the above documents are not in Thai, Thai immigration officials may request that you provide translated copies that have been notarized by your embassy.
How Much Does it Cost?
There are fees associated with acquiring a work permit, these are broken down into:
- A 100 baht application fee
- A 750 baht government fee for three-month work permits
- A 1,500 baht government fee for work permits ranging from three to six months
- A 3,000 baht government fee for work twelve-month work permits
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What do I do if I leave or lose my job?
A: If, at any time, your contract to work with the company listed on your work permit ends, you are required to leave Thailand as soon as possible. You can, however, apply for an extension for seven days. This extension will cost you 1,900 baht.
If a company ends an employment contract for an employee with a work permit, they are required to notify the BOI and Bangkok Immigration.
Q: How do I extend my work permit?
A: Applying for an extension to your work permit requires all the same documents as your first application did, all of which need to be up to date. The process is also almost exactly the same.
When you successfully apply for an extension on your work permit, you’ll also have either one or two years added to your Non-Immigrant B Business Visa without having to apply for the 90-day visa in advance.
Q: Do I need my work permit on me at all times?
A: Yes. Failure to produce your work permit, if requested to by a government official, can result in a fine of up to 1,000 baht.
Q: What if I lose or damage my work permit?
A: You can apply for a replacement permit for one that has been lost a damaged at the Ministry of Labor in Bangkok. Failure to do so within 15-days of losing or damaging your permit could result in a 500 baht fine.
Q: How many jobs can I work with my work permit?
A: A work permit only allows you to work the job you specified when you applied for it. That occupation is listed on your work permit. Should you be found to be working any job not listed on your work permit, you could be liable for a 2,000 baht fine and face up to 1 month in prison.
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Aster Lion is an Employer of Record (EOR / PEO) & Payroll provider headquartered in Thailand that can assist with Thailand visa & work permit application, employee contractor management and payroll solutions. You can reach out to us for any inquiries on how we can assist you with your staffing & employment requirements in Thailand.