Thailand Work Permit

In order to establish a presence while conducting business in Thailand you will need a Work Permit and a related business visa. The first step in obtaining a Work Permit is to obtain a non-immigrant, type “B” business visa from a Royal Thai Embassy or Consulate outside of Thailand. As issued, this visa is normally good for a single entry and a ninety day stay. Every Thai Consulate has their own forms and procedures, which must be completed to their satisfaction before a visa can be issued.

Once you have entered Thailand on this visa we will handle the application and processing of a Work Permit under the jurisdiction of the Thai Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare. Once the Work Permit is approved and issued, its validity will match the date of expiration of the applicant’s non-immigrant visa at the time the Work Permit was issued. Therefore the next step after obtaining a Work Permit is to apply for a One-Year Visa with the Immigration Bureau, based on the issued Work Permit.

It has to be noted that the visa process is entirely independent and unrelated to the procedure in obtaining a Work Permit. A valid Work Permit does not guarantee the right to stay in Thailand, nor does a valid business visa guarantee the right to work in Thailand.

Foreigners seeking to work in Thailand must obtain a Work Permit before beginning work. While an employer may file an application on the foreigner’s behalf in advance of his commencing work, the actual Work Permit will not be issued until the foreigner has entered Thailand in accordance with the immigration laws and has presented himself to receive his Work Permit. The Permit initially will be valid only for the period of the foreigner’s Non-Immigrant Visa permits him to remain in Thailand under the Immigration Law. The Work Permit will be subject to renewal in accordance with the renewed or extended visa. For foreigners who are holders of a Thai Certificate of Residence, the Work Permit can be renewed annually. The Labor Department, subject to subsequent renewal, will in principle grant an initial duration of one year for the Work Permit.

A Work Permit must be renewed before its expiry date or it will automatically lapse. This process has to be renewed every year under the consideration of the Labor Department.

•    You must have a Non-Immigrant visa to apply for a work permit, which is usually done before entering Thailand.
•    You must have a valid work permit to perform any type of work in Thailand. This also includes volunteer and nonprofit work.
•    To obtain a work permit you must have a company employ you. An individual cannot simply apply for a work permit on their own.
•    A work permit is only valid for the company that employs you. You can work for multiple companies in Thailand, but you must hold a valid work
permit for each of them.
•    If you do not have a company to employ you for the work permit, you can form your own Thai company and obtain the required permit.

Please note that you do not need to employ any Thai nationals or be paid a minimum salary for your nationality to obtain Work Permit. Most requirements regarding these issues relate to obtaining your visa extension only.

The penalties for working in Thailand without a work permit are very strict and can be from 3 months to 5 years imprisonment. You will also face deportation and be blacklisted from Thailand for 99 years. Please note that both the employee and employer have to comply with all rules and regulations and both are subject to the penalties.

Documents Required for Work Permit in Thailand

For the Applicant:

1.    Copy of the passport of the applicant bearing a valid non-immigrant “B” visa obtained from the Royal Thai Embassy/Consulate prior to entering
Thailand and the page with the visa stamp for 90 days’ stay obtained when entering Thailand.
2.    Three (3) photographs, size 5×6 cm (2.5 inches) exactly, front view, head uncovered of the applicant taken no older than 6 months prior to the
filing of the application.
3.    Copy of the applicant’s highest educational certificate.  If the certificate is issued in language other than English, this must be translated into English
or Thai and certified by the Thai Embassy (if abroad) or the Embassy of the country of issuance in Thailand.
4.    Curriculum Vitae (Resume) with complete information, such as details of academic years, degrees, cities in which the schools/institutes are located
and former employers’ names and business premises, job positions and job responsibilities in the applicant’s working experience/background.
5.    Reference letter(s) or certificate(s) of the applicant’s previous employment showing where, when and in what position the applicant had previously
been employed.  If the certificates or the letters are issued in a language other than English or Thai, these must be translated into English or Thai
and certified by the Thai Embassy (if abroad) or the Embassy of the country of issuance in Thailand.
6.    Details of job position, job description, salary, terms of employment, and address in Thailand of the applicant.
7.    A local medical certificate from a first class physician in Thailand verifying that the applicant is not an insane person, nor is of unsound mind, nor is a
person suffering from leprosy, serious consumption and elephantiasis at a stage where the symptoms would be objectionable to the public, and is
not addicted to narcotic drugs or alcohol.
8.    Copy of official receipt of the return of the applicant’s previous work permit (Form Tor. Thor. 10), if any.

For Company/Employer:

9.    Map showing the location of the Company.
10.  The Company’s letterhead papers.

***Please not that Thailand’s rules and regulations are constantly changing and it is vital that you check with the Thai Authorities for updated information. Disclaimer: We do not take any responsibility for the accuracy and correctness of any information provided on