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ResourcesVisa & Immigration LawThailand Immigration LawTM30 & TM28: Short Term Address Change for Foreigners in Thailand

TM30 & TM28: Short Term Address Change for Foreigners in Thailand

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests, we are discussing address changes and the notifications associated with address changes for foreigners here in the Kingdom. 

Now this is a topic that has had some rather wide discussion about it in the past roughly three to six weeks. I have noticed there has been a lot of concern about this especially in light of the fact that the now apparently transferred Head of Immigration did discuss issues associated with foreigners needing to notify regarding their addresses in the Kingdom and this is something that is pretty important but I think it's not particularly understood. 

Sort of anecdotally I have seen other people both on YouTube as well as on the radio and things I have heard here in Thailand, discussing the TM30 and specifically I went ahead and went to the Thai Immigration website and we will go ahead and throw this up there. This is from the Thai Immigration website directly and it discusses the TM30. Let me just quote directly real quick: “According to section 38 of the 1979 Immigration Act, "House owners, heads of household, landlords or managers of hotels who accommodate foreign nationals on a temporary basis to stay in the Kingdom legally, must notify the local Immigration Authorities within 24 hours from the time of arrival of the foreign National." If there is no Immigration Office in the province or locality of the respective house or hotel, the notification is made to the local police station.  In Bangkok the notification is made to the Immigration Bureau. The notification of residence of foreign nationals is made to the manager of licensed hotels according to the Hotel Act, owners of guest houses, mansions, apartments and rented houses using the form TM30."

So TM30 is for landlords effectively. Here is where things get somewhat confusing because I have seen things and heard things where people are saying "the foreigner doesn't really need to worry too much about the TM30 and in fact they only need to worry about the TM30 once when they notify of their actual residence, usually rented, but it could be a condominium as well that one would own where they need to notify Immigration of that permanent address. That is true strictly speaking.  

However there is another form and we will go ahead and throw this up there. This is the TM28 and the way I understand things the TM28 form is required for foreign nationals to file on their own behalf when they are changing addresses and this is even for as short a period as 24 hours. This is a different form than the landlord form. That is something to understand here. This needs to be filed by the foreigner unilaterally to go ahead and explain that they are changing their address even for as little as 24 hours and it is actually noted in the form itself  "a stay in another (and I think they mean province in the translation. I think they dropped that out) province of over 24 hours must be reported within 48 hours of arrival in that place okay.   It also states here, your local police station must be notified of any change of address within 24 hours." 

So again for a foreigner in the Kingdom and a foreigner in any kind of Immigration status even presumably Permanent Residence, but I think Permanent Residence has a slightly different regulatory structure, so let's just keep this to non-immigrants and tourists, in theory, once you have notified of one address if you change, you have got to notify of another address.

A thing to keep in mind, I don't think this particularly pertains to short-term tourists.  I don't think in a "spirit of the law" sort of analysis that is who they are particularly looking at but all Non-immigrant Visa holders, I think TM28 applies to all of you and for that reason I think it's a good idea to get familiar with the TM28 form as well as the TM30 form in order to understand the regulatory compliance associate with changing an address here in the Kingdom. 

That being said with recent changes with respect to personnel at Thai Immigration a person if there is a change to regulations or any comments made on a specific topic we will certainly go ahead and do another video and try to get it up in his timely manner as possible.