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Do I Need a Work Permit to Deal with Bitcoin in Thailand?

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests, we are discussing the topic of Bitcoin with respect to Work Permits. I actually got an email and a comment on this channel from someone asking: "Do I need a Work Permit to deal with Bitcoin in Thailand?" My response to that is: "Well what are you doing?" It very much depends on the context of that question. If you simply hold Bitcoin, that I don't think would be considered work.

We have done a number of videos on this channel where we get into "what is the definition of work in Thailand?" and in many ways it is rather vague but it is rather simple when you read the relevant regulations. Basically, any activity that is done for a purpose for lack of a better term, can be deemed to be work. Now, I don't mean to oversimplify things or try to be nonsensical but it may be like I believe Oliver Wendell Holmes said about obscenity: "I know it when I see it" You can probably argue when it comes to the Labour Ministry, they probably take a very similar approach to what their definition of work is. "We know it when we see it." 

The long story short for this video is yeah if you just hold Bitcoin or even if you are selling some Bitcoin on an exchange to have cash to deal with some expense or something, probably not a Work Permit issue. Trading in Bitcoin, that gets over into a little bit more gray area. If you are accepting Bitcoin in exchange for labour or for a service of some kind, yeah I think you are probably definitely in the 'need a Work Permit' category. 

But again and I have had the Attorneys here in our office vet this so I am not saying anything completely out of school. I am not a Thai Attorney, I am an American Attorney. I am the Managing Director of this firm and I have definitely dealt with Work Permits for over a decade and I have dealt with Immigration and Labour Department so I can sort of make observations but the purpose of the labour rules is to deal with labour. Simply holding one's assets I don't think is considered labour. Trading things could be and again Bitcoin in exchange for goods, services or you know an undertaking, yeah that that could be that could be deemed to be work, and that could be deemed to require a Work Permit so again it is going to vary and depend very much on the underlying facts of a given case.