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Mandatory health insurance for over 50s in Thailand only affects those on Non-Immigrant Visa O-A


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Mandatory health insurance for over 50s in Thailand only affects those on Non-Immigrant Visa O-A

 

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Thaivisa has today spoken with Prachuap Khiri Khan Immigration in a bid to try and clear up some confusion surrounding the recent announcement regarding mandatory health insurance for Non-Immigrant Visa O-A.

 

Prachuap Khiri Khan Immigration told Thaivisa that the new requirements only affect people seeking Non-Immigrant Visa O-A.

 

The requirement for mandatory health insurance does not affect those people who stay in Thailand on a Non O extension of stay based on retirement.

 

The requirement also does not apply to those staying in Thailand on a marriage extension or an extension of stay based on being a parent to a Thai child.

 

Prachuap Khiri Khan Immigration said they have had elderly foreigners visiting their office incorrectly believing they are affected by the new requirements.

 

Prachuap Khiri Khan Immigration stressed it is important for foreign retirees in Thailand to familiarise themselves with exactly what it says in their passport in order to determine if they stay in Thailand on an Non-Immigrant Visa O-A or an extension of stay based on retirement.

 

Many people, both foreigners and also immigration officials, use the term ‘retirement visa’ when what they are actually referring to is an ‘extension of stay based on retirement’.

 

It is this inaccuracy which has lead to some of the confusion.

 

If you stay in Thailand on Non-Immigrant Visa O-A, you will have something like this in your passport:

 

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An extension of stay based on retirement looks like this:

 

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A Non-Immigrant Visa O-A is obtained from a Thai Embassy or Consulate in your home country, whereas an ‘extension of stay based on retirement’ is normally obtained from your local immigration office in Thailand.

 

For expats living in Hua Hin, anyone who is still unsure about what type of visa or extension they have are urged to contact Prachuap Khiri Khan Immigration at their office in Thap Thai, where officers will be happy to answer any questions.

 

Prachuap Khiri Khan Immigration also stressed to Thaivisa that retirees should not panic regarding the new measures, especially if you reside in Thailand on a Non O extension of stay based on retirement as the mandatory health insurance requirement does not affect you.

 

While it is yet to be confirmed, The Nation reported earlier that the new mandatory health insurance requirement for Non-Immigrant Visa O-A are likely to come into force from July onwards.

 

Thaivisa spoke to Prachuap Khiri Khan Immigration on the Surf 102.5 FM Breakfast Show.

 

Thanks to Richard and the team at Surf 102.5FM for their invite onto the show.

 

https://www.facebook.com/Surf102.5/videos/1294319820719990/?t=6082 - Immigration discussion from 1 Hour and 40 minutes 

 

Expats in Hua Hin are reminded that Prachuap Khiri Khan Immigration has moved to a new office in Thap Thai and also have an office in the basement of BluPort shopping mall.


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-- © Copyright Thai Visa News 2019-05-24
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Despite this very clear and precise information...what odds will you lay that possibly as soon as tomorrow there will be an OP asking ..."Who exactly has to get the new Health Insurance to stay in Thailand"?

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Clear and precise it ain't. What about people like me who have both an  O-A Visa stamp in their passport AND an Extension Of Stay based on Retirement (which is what O-A Visa holders progress to after a year)?

Originally, the word "seeking" is used - presumably meaning someone applying for an O-A Viaa at a Thai Consulate overseas - before muddying the waters by talking about Extension of Stays.

Retirees on Non-O visas and Non O-A visas alike progress onto the same Extension of Stay. 

What is not explained in the article is if the former must now have insurance while the latter is not under such a requirement. That would seem nonsensical especially as my Non O-A has long since expired (but remains in my passport) and I am living here on an Extension Of Stay (same as those people who originally had a Non O visa) but stranger things have happened in Thailand.

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This is a good and helpful clarification of the vagueness of the original MOPH announcement re required insurance for O-A visa applicants.

 

Now, let's just hope the ultimate policy and regulations that end up being issued by MOPH and MFA and Immigration end up matching what's being reported here.

 

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i for one am not holding my breath, just look at all the different, requirement which we see on a daily basis, from different immigration offices around Thailand, very often we know the rules but they dont, they just make them up, and we are not in a position to question that.

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18 minutes ago, sidelines said:

Clear and precise it ain't. What about people like me who have both an  O-A Visa stamp in their passport AND an Extension Of Stay based on Retirement (which is what O-A Visa holders progress to after a year)?

Originally, the word "seeking" is used - presumably meaning someone applying for an O-A Viaa at a Thai Consulate overseas - before muddying the waters by talking about Extension of Stays.

Retirees on Non-O visas and Non O-A visas alike progress onto the same Extension of Stay. 

What is not explained in the article is if the former must now have insurance while the latter is not under such a requirement. That would seem nonsensical especially as my Non O-A has long since expired (but remains in my passport) and I am living here on an Extension Of Stay (same as those people who originally had a Non O visa) but stranger things have happened in Thailand.

I'm thinking along the same lines as you. My retirement stamp is similar to the one shown in the picture. What does the stamp look like for the O-retirees? Also what is the difference because we are all on extension of stays but having come in 10 years ago on an O-A we jumped through additional hoops (police check, medical, etc).

I'm puzzled.

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53 minutes ago, BigBadGeordie said:

And as we all know from previous experience this policy will be uniformly implemented at every immigration office across the Kingdom!

Except Chiangmai 

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No news here, that's what the original announcement said. Now we have one more interpretation of some local immigration office. Does not mean it's the same next door. So no, this is not really helpful unless we get it from the top dog.

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14 minutes ago, streetlite said:

I'm thinking along the same lines as you. My retirement stamp is similar to the one shown in the picture. What does the stamp look like for the O-retirees? Also what is the difference because we are all on extension of stays but having come in 10 years ago on an O-A we jumped through additional hoops (police check, medical, etc).

I'm puzzled.

I am suspicious of this also.  My O stamp is actually a big red stamp issued in UK but I also had to provide the police check and medical report.  O and O-A sound exactly the same to me and, until someone can tell me what the difference is, I will not believe that I, as an O, am off the hook.  Furthermore the carry forward stamps on my new passport also clearly state O.

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1 minute ago, sfokevin said:

So once an Non O-A visa holder get an extension the passport holder can then cancel his health insurance?... 

Exactly.  It just does not make sense.

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1 hour ago, BigBadGeordie said:

And as we all know from previous experience this policy will be uniformly implemented at every immigration office across the Kingdom!

It is clear that I have not, nor will I ever apply for an extension at every immigration office across the Kingdom, so I wouldn't know about future implementation at the miriad of offices. Your comment only adds to the boring volume of negativism so often found on TVF. 

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1 hour ago, dotpoom said:

Despite this very clear and precise information...what odds will you lay that possibly as soon as tomorrow there will be an OP asking ..."Who exactly has to get the new Health Insurance to stay in Thailand"?

isn't it good you will be able to help them.

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Seems to me that they wish to target tourists, not long stay residents. My visa was a Non-Imm “OA” and was stamped in my passport. Is it possible that this is different to the Non-Imm “O-A” blue labels? “OA” ... “O-A”, anything is possible here!

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First, two things:

1.  The discussion of interest starts at 1 hour and 40 minutes (not 1 minute and 40 seconds).

2.  I think there might be a video editor position available at this radio station.

https://www.facebook.com/Surf102.5/videos/1294319820719990/?t=6082 - Immigration discussion from 1 minute 40 seconds

Since there seems to be some confusion on this point, maybe this will help:

Does this affect me?

Q:  I'm here right now on a one-year extension of stay for purpose of retirement that I obtained from my local immigration office in Thailand.  Does this affect me?

A:  No.

Q:  I'm here right now on permission to stay from using a NON 0

O-A Visa that I obtained from the Thai Embassy or Consulate in my home country.  Does this affect me?
A:  No.

Q: I'm at the Thai Embassy or Consulate in my home country about to apply for a NON O-A Visa.  Does this affect me?
A: No.

Q:  Does it currently apply to anyone?
A:  No

Q:  When it applies to someone who will that be and when.
A:  It will apply to people applying for a NON O-A visa at a Thai Embassy or Consulate in their home country, possibly as soon as sometime in July.

Q:  Wouldn't it be nice if everyone (Thai Immigration, media, people who have one, and people who want one) used extremely precise language when discussing visas and extensions of stay?
A:  Yes

Q:  Any chance of that happening?
A:  No
 

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1 hour ago, BigBadGeordie said:

And as we all know from previous experience this policy will be uniformly implemented at every immigration office across the Kingdom!

 

1 hour ago, BigBadGeordie said:

And as we all know from previous experience this policy will be uniformly implemented at every immigration office across the Kingdom!

An uninformed comment I am afraid to say. As an OA visa is only granted outside Thailand, why on earth would it have to be implemented at every immigration office across the Kingdom. Best not to comment unless you fully understand or it makes you look silly.

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Great news. In the land of obscurity, finally some clarity on this important point. Maybe without the Biggest Joke, the nation can return to a less hostile place for ex-pats. Maybe. Unfortunately, the army is still in place. 

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46 minutes ago, JamesBlond said:

Not to wrangle over this, but when it comes to insurance, where is the logic in differentiating between retirees on a visa and those on an extension of stay?

those of us on an extension of stay has lived in Thailand for many years and are known to pay our hospital expenses like today it cost me 7000 baht for a nose job and as usual, I had to pay the bill before I left the hospital at age 77 I have no hope of getting insurance because I am past their life limit of 75 I think it time the governments of the world should ever make the insurance companies extend the life expectancy or they start their own insurance to cover up to 100 that should do it

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3 minutes ago, jimn said:

 

An uninformed comment I am afraid to say. As an OA visa is only granted outside Thailand, why on earth would it have to be implemented at every immigration office across the Kingdom. Best not to comment unless you fully understand or it makes you look silly.

I'm likely to get into trouble here but I will try anyway.  Firstly BigBadGeordie is stating what we all know and that is that different offices vary in their policies and how they enforce them.  As that is the case it is likely that some IOs dealing with extensions will insist that applicants have health insurance.  No basis in regulations needed.  Not yet stated anywhere but it could happen.  

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For what it may be worth, my passport stamp is not as the one depicted. From Chonburi immigration it has a separate ‘retirement’ stamp near or across the body of the main stamp. 

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