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Thai O-A Retirement Visas: Insurance and Banking Issues

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests, we are specifically discussing the O-A Retirement Visa because we are discussing it in the context of insurance.

For those who are unaware, certain folks who are in O Retirement Visa status may not need to deal with insurance. It is going to depend on their situation; where they are at physical location-wise, and that is not really the thrust of this video. We are talking about O-A folks that need to deal with insurance. 

A recent comment that was somewhat critical of me on this channel, and there is certainly no shortage of those, quoting directly: "Your comments on insurance lack clear logic. Westerners have to lodge savings with a bank." I think what this person is trying to say is that the banking should be sufficient for purposes of proving an ability to pay for one's medical issues I should say. Let's go back and discuss the policy, going back prior to October, 2019 when these insurance requirements were coming online.

The Thai Government, the Immigration Officers, are well aware of the requirement for money in a bank account and that requirement is what it is. It just stands as it always has. The 800,000 Baht in a bank account or being able to prove 65,000 Baht coming into Thailand in the form of basically a pension; it doesn't necessarily have to be a pension, just income of 65,000 Baht or more on a monthly basis and be able to prove that up. The way that they view that is that is to be able to show that one is able to support themselves in terms of basically room and board and general living expenses. Medical insurance was brought in prior to October, 2019. The rules were promulgated and it was enacted because there were concerns about folks getting sick in Thailand or basically coming down with illnesses, retirees, and taxing the Thai medical system placing a great deal of cost and burden on the Thai medical system. The two really don't have anything to do with one another in terms of policy thinking on a rather executive level within Thai Immigration. They are looking at these as two different issues. Money in the bank is there as evidence of one's ability to support oneself while insurance is there to basically evidence an ability to support oneself or to be covered in the event of an unfortunate illness or even perhaps death here in the Kingdom of Thailand. They are not the same thing so it is not a real good idea to go ahead and conflate these two issues because the way Thai immigration looks at it is it is two different things.