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Camerata's Guide To The Permanent Residence Process


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Since nobody has done it before, here's my guide to the Permanent Resident application process in 2004: Disclaimer These are my personal experiences as a single guy living in rented accommodation in

I promised a friend I would write about my experience recently in getting my permanent residence. Some of it is maybe different from the original Camerata guide. First, I must give kudos to all Thai o

okay I managed to contact PR section and spoke to the officer in charge of the PR section who actually took the time to investigate the options and called me back.   Only those PRs that expi

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Outstanding, Camerata. One question I have is, do you have to apply for PR at the immigration branch office nearest your residence? For example can a Chiang Mai resident apply in Bangkok or vice versa?

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Apparently upcountry residents can apply in Bangkok. The legal firm I hired was handling a case like that. But I wonder where your file would end up at the end of the process and if you would have to apply for future endorsements and re-entries in Bangkok?

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Something I forgot to mention is that when applying for PR you are given a 6-month extension visa, which is followed by 3-month extensions until the application is approved or rejected. But you can ask for 6-month extensions and that will save you a work permit renewal each time. Make a point of seeing the same officer you dealt with before and asking for 6 months.

There is some good information about PR requirements at http://www.immigration.go.th/nov2004/en/do...tion4extend.doc dated December 2003. It gives a good idea of how they intended the system to work, complete with a disclaimer at the end saying that even if you fulfill all the requirements they can still reject you and don't have to tell you the reason.

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  • 1 month later...
What is the benefit of having PR? I see that you still have to pay for re-entry. Can you buy land at least?

Check the Benefits of PR topic to see what people think about this. For me, the main benefit is the status change. You don't have to leave the country within 7 days if you lose your job, and you don't have to worry about the requirements for a retirement visa when you retire. Your status in Thailand is no longer tied to your work permit and you don't have to extend a visa each year or report your address every 90 days.

Other benefits are that you can buy a condo without importing the money from overseas and you can sit on the board of a public company.

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Could you elaborate on "contribution to Thai society." What would suffice?

Immigration has never given any details, so it's up to the applicant. I would say membership of an organization involved in charitable activities (Rotary Club, etc) or maybe a record of donations over 5,000 baht to charities or temples (temples can give an official receipt) would be useful.

For many applicants I think the reference letters are a substitute for social contribution. I can't imagine many expat businessmen have a significant social contribution if they've only been in the country 3-4 years.

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good luck skippy.....by the way in the interview questions (in front of a camera) if they ask you what the Thai National Day ("Wan Chart") is, answer December 5th (the King's Birthday), not December 10th (Constitution Day)...that's the only question I got wrong.....

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Can anyone recommend an experienced immigration lawyer based in Bangkok that can assist me with the process of applying for permanent residency. Having done some basic research on the topic I believe I have a quite reasonable liklihood of success and therefore want an "above board" lawyer rather than one that make seek to involve some under the table deal.

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I knew some one about 10 years ago who claimed his application was facilitated by a B300k deposit made in cash to the sister of a police general. He said it was a lot of trouble getting introduced to the right person and organising the gratuity, as they were very scared of foreigners blowing the whistle on them, but once it was done he only had two interviews of five minutes each and no requests for further documents. I cannot vouch for the authenticity of this story but it seems quite possible. However, I assume there is more competition amongst Chinese and Indian applicants as there are usually more than the country quota of 100 applicants, so they are more likely to look for ways to bribe their way in than farangs who never bang up against their country's quota.

For those going through the front door, which is most, testimonials from civil servants, specially senior policemen, are worth a lot more than those from businessmen, academics etc however prominent the latter may be. Apart from the police and of course Immigration itself the most useful would be senior officials from the Interior Ministry, Tourist Authority of Thailand, Labor Ministry, National Intelligence Agency. This because they sit on the committee for permance residence that decides on your application, assuming you were not turned down at Immigration without referral to the committee. I think the most important thing is working for a large company in Thailand with lots of paid up capital that pays a lot of tax. I have known people working for large firms get it without difficulty when their testimonials and evidence of contribution to Thai society looked weak to me. But these are critical if you work for a small company. If it is your own B2 million company, most of these are automatically rejected, so up your capital to at least B5 million before your apply and raise your own salary to at least B150k a month before your apply. You can always drop again afterwards.

In addition to the benefits already mentioned you are allowed to apply for a gun permit which I am not advocating anyone does but just so as you know. More importanly anything you normally need a work permit for e.g. opening a bank account, buying a car, you can do as a permanent resident without having to show a work permit.

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I was granted residency last year. Excellent instructions given here, and to let you know that l was working in Phuket at the time, but it was advised to apply personally in Bangkok (together with your lawyer). Phuket Immigration were very helpful, but advised it easier due to the number of times you will have to visit for paperwork, interview, Thai language test etc etc.

Best bet, get a good lawyer, apply here in Bangkok but make sure that you have paid up in full your monthly and income tax payments, ready to apply for a 'criminal record' in your home country and a bit of advise would be to let your Embassy know in advance and get a contact who can help you when you require to obtain certain certificates from your home country.

Good luck !

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and a bit of advise would be to let your Embassy know in advance and get a contact who can help you when you require to obtain certain certificates from your home country.

Good luck !

Which certificates can an embassy help to obtain? When I did PR, all the embassy did for me was certify that my photocopies of certificates were in fact real copies, and charge me over a thousand baht for each one. They are used to doing this and there is no need to contact them in advance.

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I got my PR early this year. One piece of advice I would give is, when you return to immigration having received your approval letter, to give an address in Bangkok for your registration in the house papers. I had intended to give the up-country address of my wife to immediately put my name on her house papers, but a helpful immigration officer warned me not to do this because the Alien Registration book (the red book) is issued by the police station covering the address and very few up-country police stations hold blank red books, let alone know how to fill them in. As a result of this advice I

(1) gave the address of a Thai friend in Bangkok,

(2) got my Blue Book issued by immigration in Suan Plu with that address on,

(3) went along to the local police station down Sathorn Road where they issued my red Book within a day,

(4) went to the BMA district office with my Thai house-owning friend and got put on her house paper,

(5) two weeks later went to the same office with her and said I was moving up-country, they issued me with a piece of paper giving my details,

(6) took said piece of paper to the Amphur office where my wife's house is and got put onto her house paper, this automatically cancelled me from the Bangkok house paper, via their computer network.

(7) went to local police station and registered my name and red book there.

Most of that went without any undue hassle or tea money. Some moves involved in the transfer of name from one house paper in Bangkok to one up-country required short waits whilst the officials checked their manuals to see how to do it for a farang PR.

I hope this helps any one else who might otherwise give an up-country address only to find that the up-country offices can't process it.

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The PR visa is available to 100 applicant for each nationality

If you're UK citizen then it might be hard.

Irish less so

Iceland now we're in the running

guatemalan a lock if you can pass all the huddles

Just a repeat of a post I did before.

---------------------------------------------------

And I would say that a quota limit of 100 is not an issue for US or UK. The following is from the immigration site for accepted PR in 2004.

"The list of 169 applicants who applied residential permit in year 2004 (quota) and the list of the 11 applicants of residential permit (non-quota) passed the preliminary consideration of the Immigration Commission and also approval of The Minister of Interior in March,3 2006"

I converted the Word document to an html page that you can see here: PR Granted 2004

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Just a repeat of a post I did before.

---------------------------------------------------

And I would say that a quota limit of 100 is not an issue for US or UK. The following is from the immigration site for accepted PR in 2004.

"The list of 169 applicants who applied residential permit in year 2004 (quota) and the list of the 11 applicants of residential permit (non-quota) passed the preliminary consideration of the Immigration Commission and also approval of The Minister of Interior in March,3 2006"

I converted the Word document to an html page that you can see here: PR Granted 2004

I was surprised to see only a handful from the US applied for PR. I would've guessed those (from the US) wanting to apply, (I should say those whose apps qualified) would've easily reached the max of 100 applicants/country/year. Evidently my guess wasn't even close. Thanks Tywais for including the html page.

Edited by AmeriThai
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The PR visa is available to 100 applicant for each nationality

If you're UK citizen then it might be hard.

Irish less so

Iceland now we're in the running

guatemalan a lock if you can pass all the huddles

Yes, that is quite true. I am a UK citizen and only 12 were issued PR in the year l applied out of the full quota...

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and a bit of advise would be to let your Embassy know in advance and get a contact who can help you when you require to obtain certain certificates from your home country.

Good luck !

Which certificates can an embassy help to obtain? When I did PR, all the embassy did for me was certify that my photocopies of certificates were in fact real copies, and charge me over a thousand baht for each one. They are used to doing this and there is no need to contact them in advance.

I found the Embassy very useful when you are required to obtain your 'Criminal Record' which cannot be issued here in Thailand but back in the UK only. The Embassy gave full details of who to contact and where back in the UK, time frame required to obtain the letter.

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I found the Embassy very useful when you are required to obtain your 'Criminal Record' which cannot be issued here in Thailand but back in the UK only. The Embassy gave full details of who to contact and where back in the UK, time frame required to obtain the letter.

I wish my embassy had done the same. But I was able to find the info with a quick google.

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Could you elaborate on "contribution to Thai society." What would suffice?

Immigration has never given any details, so it's up to the applicant. I would say membership of an organization involved in charitable activities (Rotary Club, etc) or maybe a record of donations over 5,000 baht to charities or temples (temples can give an official receipt) would be useful.

For many applicants I think the reference letters are a substitute for social contribution. I can't imagine many expat businessmen have a significant social contribution if they've only been in the country 3-4 years.

IF you get the interview questions wrong, does that mean you dont get approved ?

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I have converted the word document of the PR requirements from Camerata's original link to an html page for convenience. You can see it here: PR Requirements

There were a couple of posts suggesting that the 3M Baht investment visa (1-year extensions) used to be 10M. I believe that may have been confused with one of the allowed options for PR.

Edited by tywais
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