Immigration warning over 90-day reporting

PHUKET TOWN: An Immigration official has advised foreigners holding any type of one-year visa extension that they must visit their local Immigration office every 90 days to confirm their identity and address – or face a 2,000 baht fine. “You will not be charged a fee for registering but you will be fined if you are late,” Capt Krissarat Nusen of the Phuket Provincial Immigration Office (PPIO) told the Gazette. “Look at the date stamped on the back of your arrival/departure card; you must come in [to the PPIO] within 90 days of that date or face the fine,” he continued. “This applies to all one-year visa extension holders without exception.” He explained that this is not a new measure but a more stringent application of existing rules following the capture in Ayudhya in August of alleged Jamaah Islamiyah terrorist Hambali, widely believed to have been Al-Qaeda’s leader in Southeast Asia. On the white TM6 arrival/departure card completed by all entrants to Thailand, and stapled into their passports, it is stated, “Must notify your place of residence to the Immigration office if you stay longer than ninety days and are required to do so every ninety days.” Capt Krissarat explained that Immigration will begin levying fines from the end of November but that foreigners will have a seven-day “grace period” beyond the 90 days, during which no fine will be imposed. After that, the fine will be 2,000 baht, whether a person is eight days or 90 days late. The Gazette understands from reader feedback that this grace period does not apply in all provinces and that in some provinces, the 90-day reporting rule has already been enforced for some time. On a related subject, Capt Krissarat also pointed out that all foreigners staying in Thailand beyond the date stamped in their passports must extend their visas, even if their circumstances make this difficult. “This applies to all people, including those in hospital or recuperating at home,” he explained. “You should ask your doctor for a written statement about your ill-health, giving reasons why you are unable to travel. You or a representative should then contact [the PPIO] for assistance.” Even those facing criminal court cases and barred from leaving the country must extend their visas, Capt Krissarat added, or face eventual fines and possible expulsion for overstaying. The fee for a visa extension, whether for 30 days, 90 days or one year, is 1,900 baht.

Phuket News
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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

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