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Jonathan Fairfield

Mandatory health insurance for retirees falls flat as ‘Non-Imm O’ visa loophole exposed

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Translation from Thinglish to English:

 

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"However, Phuket Immigration Chief Lt Col Kathathorn Kumthieng confirmed to The Phuket News this week, “People applying under the Non-Immigrant O visa do not need health insurance, but people applying for permits to stay under different visas will get the different benefits of the visa they are applying under.

“For example, a foreigner who has Non- Immigrant O-A visa will get a one-year year extension,” he said.

Yet Col Kathathorn would not confirm that one-year permits to stay would no longer be approved for those applying under “Non-Immigrant O’ visa status. Under immigration regulations, that option is still available.

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This is how he is deceiving, trying to still "promote the benefits of the non O-A".  He wants us to deduct that a non O offers a shorter extension of stay. Saying that different visas offer different "benefits", but when asked whether it means a shorter extension of stay for the non O, avoiding the question in typical Thai fashion.

 

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Lt Col Worapol also confirmed the option for foreigners to change their visa status from within Thailand.

“For example a foreigner on a tourist visa can applying to be under a Non-Immigrant visa, such as a Non-Imm O, Non-Imm B (Business), Non-Imm Ed (education), or other. They can come to apply for the visas type that the foreigner is qualified for.”

However, like Phuket Immigration Chief Col Kathathorn, Lt Col Worapol also avoided expressly confirming that foreigners can change their visa status from Non-Immigrant O-A to Non-Immigrant O.

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That's because what the Colonel does not like to tell us is that, on the same logic with changing TR to non O, you can change but you cannot really change non O-A to non O within Thailand, because they don't like to do their job, so people will need to exit Thailand to the nearest consulate to apply for the non O.

Edited by lkv
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