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Thai Immigration Enforcement and B Visa Extensions

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests, we are discussing Thai Immigration enforcement and we are also discussing this specifically in the context of the Business Visa or the B visa extension.

Why are we talking about this?  Well we do a number of B Visa applications here at our office and we do a number of extensions at our office because primarily we deal with a lot of corporate matters; especially in the context of foreigners wishing to do business here in the Kingdom. It has recently come to my attention, both anecdotally, experientially through some of the lawyers here who have been having to process things through the Immigration apparatus, as well as from information which I am going to get to here in a moment.

The Thai Immigration system is not messing around anymore. They are very, very serious about enforcing Immigration Law and they are not particularly lax in enforcing that law. We have been dealing with the Immigration system for a number of years.  They have always been assiduous in doing their job and looking at documentation but their tools and their enforcement capability and their ability to scrutinize was somewhat limited in scope and depth because their tools were not that sophisticated. Well, they are going digital. The other thing you used to see was different offices, different departments didn't liaise very well with each other nor did they did they liaise particularly well with Thai Immigration so it was difficult for Thai Immigration to verify documentation sometimes or the authenticity of documentation sometimes and as a result, folks would sort of slip through the cracks of the system and maintain status or be renewed status or be granted status either based on false documents or pretensive documentation that was not followed up on. That is ceasing to be the case by the moment here in the Kingdom. 

In a recent article I found on Thai Visa, that is, the article is titled: Biometrics Caught Chinese Man Who Went to Extend His Business Visa. Quoting directly: "Thailand’s Immigration Police used the PIBICS and biometric system to reveal that a Chinese man renewing his Business Visa was in fact someone else. (he was renewing his B Visa). The man admitted that he changed his name and got a new passport. He was both on a regular Immigration Blacklist and a Ministry of the Interior Blacklist. I urge those who are watching this video to check that out: Biometrics Caught Chinese Man Who Went to Extend His Business Visa. There is more information in there. There are also some links to other topics and there are some related links that may be of interest to those on this specific topic. Back to PIBICS, it stands for Personal Immigration Blacklist Immigration Control System and basically that system is designed as sort of a clearing house if you will for collation and analysis of data associated with foreigners here in the Kingdom. It is becoming more sophisticated especially in light of the fact it is now becoming a repository or a database if you will that can collate biometric information as well as simply paper documentation. 

I think moving forward we are going to see more enforcement activities arise as a result of PIBICS and the biometric tools they have at their disposal and for those who are looking to maintain Business Visa status here in the Kingdom, you should also keep in mind that documentation requirements are increasing as time goes along and maintaining assiduous records, you have to be very meticulous these days. The accounting division of our office is having to deal with things on a very minute level in order to maintain the status of our clients here in the Kingdom because if one doesn't maintain accurate, for example payroll documentation, Social Security documentation, tax filings etc., it may be impossible to get an extension or even a new visa to maintain ones status in business status here in the Kingdom.