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ResourcesVisa & Immigration LawThailand Immigration LawShould I Do 90 Day Reporting Notwithstanding the COVID-19 Amnesty?

Should I Do 90 Day Reporting Notwithstanding the COVID-19 Amnesty?

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests, we are discussing 90 day reporting and we are specifically discussing this in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic and the shut down here in Thailand. 

For those who are unaware, and we have multiple videos on this channel regarding this topic, the COVID-19 shutdown has prompted Thai Immigration to issue a Visa Amnesty. It has also caused them to go ahead and waive the requirement that usually is in place which requires foreigners in Thailand in Non-immigrant Visa status to do 90-day reporting; they have to report every 90 days their whereabouts to Thai Immigration. That requirement has been waived beginning March 26th and extending to July 31st. 

I have had a lot of people ask me and I did a prior video on this about the waiver of the 90-day reporting because it is a little bit unclear as to how this is going to work. The amnesty lifts presumably on July 31, so August 1 does everyone's 90-day report period begin again on that date and so therefore everyone will need to report 90 days later?  It remains to be seen. We are not sure  I am kind of thinking they are just going to view this whole period as sort of a blackout period and your 90-day reporting increments, whatever it was, it will continue to be. So you had one 90 day report during this period that you missed, as long as you make your next one at the on the same timeline as if the COVID-19 had never occurred, as if the lock down had never occurred, they will just go ahead and allow you to keep doing that. At the same time, I can see them saying "well no we are going to reset it all and the clock starts again from August 1." It is difficult to foresee. We don't really have any insight on to the exact details of that as of the time of this video but I have had some questions from clients especially within the firm because we have still been doing B visa extensionsWork Permit extensions. Folks that are here in Non-immigrant status especially extension status they need to maintain their status as they otherwise would and because their status goes out past the amnesty period and the amnesty period honestly really was designed for tourists trapped in Thailand. Now they extended it out from the first announcement to the second announcement to clearly cover non-immigrants because there were just a lot of people that were just sort of falling out from under the regulations as they originally were stipulated.

With respect to 90-day reporting specifically I have had people ask me what “should I continue to do it?” If you can I don't think it is a terrible idea especially online if you can. If you have been doing it online or by post continue doing it online, I mean why not?  Yes it is kind of a kind of an inconvenience but you might as well because frankly I think it is a good idea to do that because then it is clear, your calendar for 90 day reporting remains unchanged. I think there is a strong argument to be made that if you make use of the waiver of 90-day reporting it could reset your clock after the July 31st deadline comes and goes and then you are doing 90-day reporting in this huge herd of people that also partook of the waiver. So I think there is some benefit to continuing to do one's reports. We are assisting clients in doing them that are within the firm any way; both live in person as well as online. So those who are interested in continuing to do it notwithstanding the waiver of the requirement, feel free to contact us.  You don't have to. Let me be clear. Nobody needs to do this because it has clearly been waived as a result of the emergency decree and the Immigration regulations promulgated therefrom but if you sort of want to keep your calendar where it always was and you want to be sure that after the lockdown and the Amnesty come to an end that you are still going to be reporting in the same timeline that you otherwise did, it is not a terrible idea to go ahead and look into 90-day reporting notwithstanding the waiver.