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Work Permit Raids and Arrests in Thailand

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests, we are discussing Work Permits. For those who are unaware, working illegally in Thailand, working without a Work Permit, can subject a person to arrest, possible detention, possible deportation and possible blacklisting. 

A recent article, although probably not that recent, it has been within the last month or so, recent article, I found this on, the article is titled: French Musicians with no Work Permit, Illegal Party busted at Koh Samui, "Hippy Festival" – Koh Samui News. Quoting directly: "Bo Phut police and military officers descended on a restaurant on Lamai beach that had organized an illegal drinks and music party," and this is back when they were still some further restrictions associated with COVID-19 specifically but quoting further: "four French musicians were arrested for illegal work without a permit. One was playing drums, another on sax, a third on base and another playing guitar. They were singing too. They were taken away to Bo Phut police station." I urge folks who are interested in this to go and check that out on

The point of bringing this up is people forget this from time to time and it is very easy to become complacent and thinking that Thai Authorities in enforcement of relevant Immigration and Labour Law and they are very much not. Now do they have the ability to bust anyone at any given moment for any little thing that could be construed as work?  and I do know expats that really go out of their way and worry about that a little bit more than maybe they should. No, I mean they don't have the enforcement capability to get anyone at any given time. It is not the Panopticon of working illegally in Thailand. That said, yeah, I mean they take it seriously. They have manpower. Frankly Immigration has far more manpower and resources than it usually does because there is not the number of foreigners coming in as tourists at the moment. 

So what should one take away from this article? Well don't work illegally and be aware that Thailand takes its Immigration and Labour Laws extremely seriously and notwithstanding the fact that you don't always see people getting arrested for these things, it can be a real problem and it could land you in jail and it could cause you not to be able to come back to Thailand ever again.