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  • Thailand – Short Term Business Trip – Do you need a work permit?

    April 15 2014

    Many foreigners enter Thailand for short businesses trip of one or two days whether for the purpose of negotiating an agreement, to attend or to speak at a conference, to provide technical support, or to source a local supplier, without being aware that the purpose of their visit requires a work permit in accordance with Thai laws.

    Indeed Thai Labor law work definition is very broad and consists of exercising any activity whereby one exerts energy or uses knowledge, whether or not in consideration for wages or other benefits relating to business deemed as work under the law. It furthermore covers any work-related activity, either permanently or temporarily.

    Applying for a proper work permit is not a solution that is suitable for people that comes for short business trip in Thailand.

    There is a solution. Indeed, the Alien Working Act contains a provision that allows foreigners intending to stay in the Kingdom for a short period of time to notify the necessity and urgency of their work to the Department of Employment instead of applying for an ordinary work permit.

    The advantage of this notification is that it is very quick to process (from a few days to a few hours).

    The drawback is that this option is only available to those that come to perform “necessary and urgent” work. Furthermore the foreign person will be allowed to stay to perform such work 15 days per entry only, inclusive of weekends and holidays.

    It seems a lot of trouble for a short visit but the law has been becoming harsher against foreign who works without a work permit and control by authorities have become more frequent

    Tomorrow we will review the sanctions applicable to foreigners that work without a work permit.

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