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Continuing Chronicle of the TM30 in Thailand

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests, we are discussing TM30. That is the TM30 form issued by Thai Immigration. 

We have not done a video on TM30 in quite some time and to go ahead and just refresh folks' memory, I am just going to go ahead and quote the law real quick; I have got it notated here.

Section 38 of the Immigration Act of 1979. "the Housemaster, the owner or the possessor of the residence or the hotel manager where the alien receiving permission to stay temporary in the Kingdom has stayed, must notify the competent Official of the Immigration Office located in the same area with that ours (house), dwelling place or hotel within 24 hours from the time of arrival of the alien concerned.  If there is no Immigration Office located in that area, the local police official for that area must be notified." 

So we haven't talked a lot about TM30 lately because I find TM30 to be a rather vexing topic. I think it is rather confusing and it is a section of the law that has not been enforced in quite some time. Now it has been enforced and there was a period of relative tumult that came about as a result of the enforcement of TM30 because officials had some uncertainty about how it would be enforced, the circumstances of enforcement etc. 

A recent article from Thai Visa, that is, the article is titled:  Section 38 Hailed! (that is the enabling section for TM30), Chinese Man on 5 Year Overstay Nabbed.  Quoting directly:  "A vinyl board displayed at Immigration HQ yesterday hailed section 38 - the law whereby a foreigner must have their whereabouts reported - as being behind the capture of a Chinese man". Quoting further:  "Naew Na", which is the source material for this information, quoting further:  "said he was reported by a house owner because he had stayed for a long time and had no job and no apparent means to support himself. He was found to be on overstay of 2,024 days." 

So it is interesting to note in this that the enforcement apparatus is clearly being stringent in enforcement of overstay violations. They are basically coming after folks for that with a zealousness that we have not seen until rather recently. 

Also the thing to remember, I don't think TM30 is going away. I think we are simply going to see it be incorporated into the greater fabric of the Immigration apparatus so I think it is something we are all going to have to go ahead and get used to and they do use it for enforcement capabilities, for enforcement functions.  So exactly how it is going to operate in the future remains to be seen but I think it is pretty safe to say we are going to be dealing with TM30 so long as we have Non-immigrant Visa categories in Thailand. I think the only way that we are going to see it go away is if there is some sort of Amendment to the Act.