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About USNret

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  1. It's not a matter of anyone being in trouble yet, but I can foresee the longer this goes on, the more people will fall into this situation. Let's say last February you had 8 months on your PP and had planned to renew. But then the embassy shut down and you cannot. By now, you'd have less than 6 months remaining, and if you are on a Non-O marriage or retirement visa, at this point immigration would NOT issue a stamp for you. So yeah... Life can be getting difficult for some people right now, and more people before too long. Would immigration give you a new extension in one of those 1-year emergency passports? I don't know, but that's why I started this conversation.
  2. Thanks Joe. Yes, I meant March 2021. Too late to edit my OP. Wondering if anyone here has followed the emergency procedures yet to get the EDPD. How did it work out?
  3. Not sure which is the correct forum for this question... The U.S. embassy, and probably others, is not issuing new passports during the COVID emergency. No telling when they will resume, and of course there will be a big backlog once they do. They do give emergency PP for repatriation only, but that is not my concern. By now, certainly someone on here has had their passport expire and unable to get a new one. While none of us need to travel right now, I would be a bit uneasy living overseas with an expired passport. AFAIK, there is nothing we can do about it, but are the Thai authorities understanding & forgiving on this matter? On Monday 18 May I got my 1-year extension stamped in my passport. Fortunately, I still have 6 months left or they likely would not have given me the stamp. The PP expires in March 2020, so by July or August of this year I should be requesting the new passport, and get my stamp moved to the new one. It's not clear whether I'll be able to meet this timeline or not. Has anyone already encountered this problem? Is there any indication of how Thai authorities view the matter? The longer this goes one, the greater will be the impact to many of us.
  4. There is a certain history to this with Americans. Some years back, under George Bush 2, America imposed onerous reporting requirements on foreign banks with American depositors. The penalty for non-compliance was painful, basically cutting off banks from U.S. markets. For foreign banks, it was not worth the risk so their response was to stop taking American customers. This impacted American expats all over the globe, cutting them off from normal banking services. The purpose of the law was to prevent the hiding of funds offshore, since America is one of the few countries that taxes its citizens on income wherever it is earned, all over the world. But the real impact was on us "little people" with a few thousand dollars, which was not the point of the law. Little by little, foreign banks have come to terms with the U.S. law, which remains in place. They have to submit specific IRS reports (the US national taxation authority) for each of their American customers. When I applied for my account at Bangkok Bank, they had the actual IRS form which I filled out & signed on the spot. A few years ago, they would have been unable to do this.
  5. At CW, they definitely want to see the bank book after the 1 month consideration period. Your money must still be there.
  6. Just to clarify... I got the house visit as a result of converting from my VE to Non-O. Not sure if you are going through this process or not. I got an "under consideration" stamp, and they did the house visit. Then the Non-O conversion was approved. They did NOT do a house visit a month later when I went back for the 1-year extension. Even though we got another "under consideration" stamp at that time, and the IO lady suggested they *might* do a visit, I think she was bluffing. And then they never did.
  7. UbonJoe is correct... You do not need a letter when you come to pick up your results (the 1-year stamp). My IO told me something different.... 2 copies of the bank book & 2 copies of my passport. At the final visit yesterday, they wanted only ONE copy of the bank book and zero copies of the passport. So in other words, IO's do not know what the Counter 38 people want, so they just make up any random stuff to tell you. Do not bring a bank letter. The fact that SCB does not have a branch at the Government Complex building would be reason enough for me to switch banks. I use my account ONLY for immigration purposes (i.e., to stash my 400K). If I need another account for more routine purposes, I would open a separate account for that. I've heard too many stories of people "accidentally" dropping below 400K due to some unexpected fee, leading to massive inconvenience and confusion for their extension. It's real handy having your bank branch right downstairs from the immigration office, and since they open at 8:30 AM it greatly simplifies the day of your visit. I've never had to wait more than 10 minutes to get the letter they want for my marriage extension.
  8. Go Navy! We ought to get together someday and swap sea stories... I mean, lies
  9. No problems at all; sheer simplicity. That’s why I posted the branch location.
  10. Yes, I agree... we'll continue with our method of "extended vacation" while maintaining residence at the Onnut house. We still have a lot of our stuff there, and stay there from time to time when we're in BKK -- but not during Covid, as it's bad form to mingle with family members whom we don't live with. Feel free to PM me about your condo. Last week, we moved from a penthouse condo into a pool villa (private yard & pool). We're really enjoying the pool villa so that might be the type of home we eventually settle into. But we continue to research. This is one reason why we're moving around so much.
  11. Leave the money in your account until you get your final stamp. In Chaeng Wattana, this is about a month after you apply for the extension. You not only bring your bankbook to that final appointment, but bring a copy of all the pages as well. You can read my story that I posted today about that experience. Got my final stamp today at CW.
  12. I knew today's visit would be quick; here is the timeline. 0800 Arrived at CW; went through screening (no line). 0805 Took a seat at their socially-distanced queue in the large central lobby. I was number 154 in line to get a ticket for my counter. Note: They now pass out tickets in the line to get tickets; I guess this is to counter those who jump ahead of their place (I saw a lot of line-cutting last time, but zero this time). 0830: Got ticket #14 for L2 (Counter 38) where people come to collect their results. 0831: Ran downstairs to Bangkok Bank to update my passport. I do not have an ATM Card for a variety of reasons, mainly related to security, so I had to wait for the bank to open, deposit 2000THB which is the minimum deposit when you have a fixed account. 0845: Ran across the way to make copies of my passbook and passport, 75% of which was not wanted today even though I was instructed last month to bring these copies. 0855: Back upstairs. They had already passed my number, but the nice girl said standby and she would take my package. 0915: The two ladies working at Counter 38 went on a 30-minute break. Told us all to come back later (about 20 people standing around waiting for their approval stamps). 0945: They called my number; signed the form in a couple of places, received my newly-bestamped passport, and I'm done. 0950: Went back to Bangkok Bank to withdraw some cash, as now I'm finally able to spend the 400,000 that's been languishing. One thing I like about the marriage extension is that your cash is tied up for "only" 3 months of the year. So now I can use it for rent, etc. until it has to be replenished again next year for seasoning.
  13. Hi all. In the depths of the COVID emergency, I completed my very first 1-year extension today for marriage at Chaeng Wattana. I would like to start out by thanking the many members of this forum who provided ongoing advice throughout the process. Next time will be much easier! Here is the overall timeline: Jan 11: Arrived in Thailand on Visa Exempt (I hold a US passport) Jan 17: Opened up Fixed Deposit account at Bangkok Bank in my name only; deposited 2000THB (Central Plaza Rama 9 branch) Jan 22: Transferred 400K to Bangkok Bank from my U.S account (plus extra for spending money) Jan 27: Obtained extension of stay till 10 March at CW Feb 19: Went to CW with wife and applied for Non-O conversion Feb 24: House visit by Division 1 officers. They took a witness statement from sister-in-law. We claim the in-laws house in Onnut as our residence. This is nominally true, but the reality is we are staying all over Thailand at airbnb rentals. Mar 5: Obtained approval stamp for Non-O conversion Mar 11: Moved to Hua Hin to a 30-day airbnb rental. Cannot "officially" change address as this would mess up my 1-year extension. The 30-day stay has stretched to 3-5 months due to COVID. Apr 20: Brought the family on a short trip back to BKK; visit CW with wife to apply for 1-year extension. No house visit scheduled. May 18: Return to CW to to get 1-year approval stamp (solo overnight trip from HH) Here's a few notes: Normally you would submit a copy of your lease with your marriage extension application; also copy of homeowners ID card & housebook. This presented us with a problem as we are staying in a series of airbnb rentals of 1-2 months each. airbnb owners normally would not offer these documents. Solution: We established a household in wife's parents home in Onnut. Moved in our stuff and stayed there a few nights. Met the neighbors (who knew me from previous visits over the years.) Then went on "extended vacation". When the police came for the house visit, they did not interview any neighbors as the sister-in-law was home; they also didn't get past the dining room where we gave them sodas & snacks. So all was well. We were not 100% sure whether they would do a 2nd house visit; we got mixed replies on this question. By then, we're living in Hua Hin but were prepared for a midnight run back to Onnut should it prove necessary. In the end, no 2nd house visit was requested. Note, this depends one which office you visit, the mood of your IO, the phase of the moon, and whether the cock crowed at midnight. All of these factors aligned in our favor this time. When we applied for my 1-year extension, they said when I come back for approval of 18 May, update my bank book and make 2 copies of all pages. Also, 2 copies of all relevant pages of my passport. I dutifully handed all these to the girl at Counter 38; she promptly gave me back 1 copy of the bank book & BOTH copies of the passport. She was not interested. Maybe her buffalo is sick. When we shifted locale to HH, I tried to see if I could transfer my immigration package to the HH office. HH IO said no, and all the top ThaiVisa experts also said no. This is why I kept quiet about our HH stay; changing residence in the midst of a 1-year extension request would hopelessly confuse the issue. Now that it's all done, we'd like to report our change of address, although we still are in short-term rentals. We have 5 weeks at our current pool villa; then 2 months at the next. After that (Sept 1) we're not sure. Can anyone provide advice about hopping from one province to another with some regularity? Does this present any particular problem with our next extension? Should I just continue to say we will in Onnut, but are on extended travel/vacation around Thailand? I'm not really sure of the best way to approach this. Most airbnb hosts are not interested in assisting or reporting our presence.
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