If you’ve stayed for extended periods of time in Thailand and now wish to make this incredible country your home, we don’t blame you. Thailand is rich in culture and history, has fantastic food, and has the warmest people you could ever meet. To set your roots in the Land of Smiles, you need to obtain a Thai permanent residency permit. Follow our guide to make this dream a reality.
Requirements for Thai permanent residency
The Royal Thai Immigration Commission processes all applications for Thai permanent residency and limits granting such residency to 100 persons per country per year.
To be eligible for Thai permanent residency, you must fulfill the following requirements:
You must already have a non-immigrant visa for three years or more prior to submitting your application, and you must be a holder of that visa upon application submission. Moreover, you must have successfully obtained 3 consecutive annual extensions.
Additional categorical requirements
When applying for permanent residency, you can do so under one of four categories, which are as follows:
- Work or Business category – You must have contributed to the Thai economy for three or more consecutive years. The main methods to fulfill this requirement are to either work as an employee in Thailand or to start a business that employs Thai nationals. Among the four categories, this one has the greatest success rate. Talk to Baan Thai Immigration’s specialists to learn more about these methods.
- Investment category – You must invest a minimum of 10 million Baht in Thailand. You’ll gain permanent residency thereafter, but you must maintain your investment for three consecutive years for you to keep your residency.
- Humanity Reasons or Support a family category – You are either married to a permanent resident or a Thai national, or you’re a parent or guardian of a Thai national who’s below 20 years of age.
- Expert or Academic category – You are endorsed by a relevant Thai government organization by virtue of your academic or expert qualifications.
Other important things to keep in mind
Each category may require different documents, and Thai Immigration may determine other application categories as it deems fit.
Once your permanent residency application is accepted, you will receive a residence blue book. You must then register your place of residence in Thailand at the Amphur registration office and obtain a house card. A week after receiving your residence certificate, go to the local police station and apply for an alien book (red book), which is the national identification card for non-Thai citizens. Every year after that, you have to re-register there.
Please note that while the Thai Residency Permit never expires, it can be revoked. And whenever you travel abroad and return to Thailand, you must apply for a re-entry permit or endorsement.
Last but definitely no least, after ten consecutive years of being a Permanent Resident, you can apply to become a Thai naturalized citizen.