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BANGKOK 27 June 2019 03:10
webfact

Health insurance mandatory for long-stay foreigners in Thailand

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Posted (edited)

There was another thread on this topic, where it was stated that this was only for people with new O-A visas. Has this now changed to all retirees, who I believe are on O visas?
I renewed my retirement last week, nothing mentioned about this by the immigration office.

Edited by MrMuddle
grammar correction

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Posted (edited)
29 minutes ago, brewsterbudgen said:

Seeing as they only refer to OA visas and don't mention Extensions, I'd say that it's pretty clear!

Sent from my SM-G930F using Thailand Forum - Thaivisa mobile app
 

Saowapa Jongkittipong, who leads the Health Service Support Department’s International Health Division, said yesterday.  "Current holders of this visa will have to produce proof of their health insurance for visa renewal"

 

Visa renewal = Extension. 

 

https://www.nationmultimedia.com/detail/national/30369468

 

Since none of the policies for the original O-A visa are written in the Thai language these policies must be translated into Thai before approval.  I'd estimate hiring 3 to 500 more highly paid personal to scrutinize these policies and arrive at a decision. 

Edited by marcusarelus

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Posted (edited)
14 minutes ago, Jingthing said:

UbonJoe has posted repeatedly that it is for new O-A visa applications in home countries ONLY.

So you can believe his reading if you want.

Others (including me) hear the published announcement saying that it included RENEWALS as possibly meaning that annual extensions based on retirement in Thailand would be included as well, if not in July, then possibly later.

Some have pedantically said that you can't renew a visa but in reality many people (expats, visa agencies, immigration officers, etc.) have been calling annual extensions "renewals" for many years. It's widely and commonly understood to mean extensions even if it is technically an incorrect way to say it.  

So if you're looking for 100 percent certainty going forward, my opinion is that is not possible to give as YET. 

I have found it interesting that the insurance representatives in the Thai Visa Insurance forum (who obviously know the correct answer) after being asked repeatedly have not committed one way or the other.  In most things the correct answer is gleaned by following the money and if one asks who will make money from this policy the answer is obvious. 

 

The old men and women don't run out on bills, - heck they can hardly walk - it's the illegal workers from Burma, Laos and Cambodia who are not registered with Thai SS who run up the bills.  Doesn't take a weather man to tell which way the wind is blowing now does it?  Insurance brokers I'd imagine are the major ones to get rich as it will be a large source of new income. 

 

Edited by marcusarelus
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There has been no mention of O visas.

 

And it is clear that to get an O-A visa one will now have to show proof of insurance.

 

Where there is lack of clarity is in the reference to visa "renewal" and whether this means getting a subsequent O-A visa abroad or getting an extension of stay within Thailand having entered on an O-A. Neither of these are actual "visa renewals" so it is anyone's guess what was meant.

 

If what they mean is getting subsequent (new) O-A visas then the whole requirement pertains only to visas issued by Embassies/Consulates in your home country and will not involve TI, the instructions will go out through MoFA to the Embassies and Consulates. (And lord knows how these will go about sorting out the various terms of foreign insurance policies to see if they comply with this idiotic 400/40 business).

 

If what is meant is extensions of stay for people who entered on O-A visa that is a whole other matter, affecting a lot of people long resident here and would need a police order going out to IOs.

 

 

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I'm pretty sure the O-A did exist nine years ago and before that as well. It would be interesting to know exactly what year it started though. 

I got my first O-A visa in 2006 after 2 years of tourist visas. As I recall I could have started with O-A in 2004 but was not spending so much time there during first 2 years and multiple entry tourist visas were available then. Will get my last O-A visa in Washington next month. Will revert to METV in future years, spending less time in Thailand.


Sent from my iPad using Thailand Forum - Thaivisa mobile app

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15 minutes ago, Sheryl said:

There has been no mention of O visas.

 

And it is clear that to get an O-A visa one will now have to show proof of insurance.

 

Where there is lack of clarity is in the reference to visa "renewal" and whether this means getting a subsequent O-A visa abroad or getting an extension of stay within Thailand having entered on an O-A. Neither of these are actual "visa renewals" so it is anyone's guess what was meant.

 

If what they mean is getting subsequent (new) O-A visas then the whole requirement pertains only to visas issued by Embassies/Consulates in your home country and will not involve TI, the instructions will go out through MoFA to the Embassies and Consulates. (And lord knows how these will go about sorting out the various terms of foreign insurance policies to see if they comply with this idiotic 400/40 business).

 

If what is meant is extensions of stay for people who entered on O-A visa that is a whole other matter, affecting a lot of people long resident here and would need a police order going out to IOs.

 

I don't think you can get a subsequent O-A visa abroad.  That would be an extension, wouldn't it?

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Posted (edited)
33 minutes ago, Sheryl said:

There has been no mention of O visas.

 

And it is clear that to get an O-A visa one will now have to show proof of insurance.

 

Where there is lack of clarity is in the reference to visa "renewal" and whether this means getting a subsequent O-A visa abroad or getting an extension of stay within Thailand having entered on an O-A. Neither of these are actual "visa renewals" so it is anyone's guess what was meant.

 

If what they mean is getting subsequent (new) O-A visas then the whole requirement pertains only to visas issued by Embassies/Consulates in your home country and will not involve TI, the instructions will go out through MoFA to the Embassies and Consulates. (And lord knows how these will go about sorting out the various terms of foreign insurance policies to see if they comply with this idiotic 400/40 business).

 

If what is meant is extensions of stay for people who entered on O-A visa that is a whole other matter, affecting a lot of people long resident here and would need a police order going out to IOs.

 

 

Yes, we have not seen any press release that explicitly suggests or hints that extensions for people that started with an O visa (rather than an O-A) may be under this new requirement.

 

But thinking this through IF it does turn out that people doing extensions that started with an O-A are under the rule, in what Cloud Cuckooland universe would people that started with O's not be included?

 

For example over 10 years ago I got my original O and have  been extending ever since. I could just have easily started with an O-A back then. 


As I've stated numerous times and it's true applying for an annual extension based on retirement is EXACTLY the same whether you started with an O or an O-A.

 

I know "logic" isn't always something to be expected here, but really it stretches credibility that people that started with an O wouldn't be under this rule as well, that is IF the people that started with O-As turn out to be. 

 

My take on all this at this point is simply UNCERTAINTY. I do have a theory though as to how the communications could have been messed up regarding O-A in the release saying renewals of O-A would be included. That theory is that sometimes people call everything to do with retirement status here O-A. Incorrect yes, but not uncommon.

 

For examples,

O visas if used as a start towards an extension

O-A visas obviously

"Renewal" of O-A visas when said to mean extensions. I have read people call that O-A renewal many times over the years when they never had an O-A visa!

Edited by Jingthing

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13 minutes ago, Pib said:

Sure...you can go back to the home country and get another O-A Visa.  Or, you can stay in Thailand and simply do an Extension of Stay.

She said "get a subsequent O-A visa Abroad."  And you have to go home to get it so you would not be abroad.  

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33 minutes ago, marcusarelus said:
48 minutes ago, Pib said:

Sure...you can go back to the home country and get another O-A Visa.  Or, you can stay in Thailand and simply do an Extension of Stay.

She said "get a subsequent O-A visa Abroad."  And you have to go home to get it so you would not be abroad.  

Ha, ha, very funny.

Abroad = not in Thailand

go home = not in Thailand

So if you "go home" you are "Abroad".

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4 minutes ago, JetsetBkk said:

Ha, ha, very funny.

Abroad = not in Thailand

go home = not in Thailand

So if you "go home" you are "Abroad".

I think the point is the guy said renew an O-A visa.  So either you think he knows absolutely nothing or he meant extension.  Which is the more likely state of absence knowledge of Visas?

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It would be illogical that not all long-termers would be caught with this. Whether O, OA, extension of stay, having this or that paperwork isn't going to make someone immune from sickness/accidents and potentially 'running away from hospital'. I'd certainly be making contingency plans.

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51 minutes ago, marcusarelus said:
57 minutes ago, JetsetBkk said:

Ha, ha, very funny.

Abroad = not in Thailand

go home = not in Thailand

So if you "go home" you are "Abroad".

I think the point is the guy said renew an O-A visa.  So either you think he knows absolutely nothing or he meant extension.  Which is the more likely state of absence knowledge of Visas?

I think the guy meant that if you go home before your O-A visa expires, e.g. after 11 months, and then start the process again, e.g. after another couple of months, to get another O-A visa, then you would have to get health insurance. But who would do that? An extension is simpler - get it before you go home and get a re-entry permit to keep the Permit to Stay active.

 

But now a lot of posters think he actually meant "get a new visa". Initially I thought he meant "get an extension" as these terms are often conflated, but now I'm not so sure. 

 

I wouldn't be surprised if all one year extensions based on age would need the health insurance. It would be incredibly considerate of them - and illogical - to make this health insurance requirement for new O-A visas only.

 

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