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dbrenn

Story Of My Thai Citizenship Application

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They are trying to prevent dual nationality with special emphasis for those converting - it has become an issue within the last several years. There are a number of posts in the PR pinned thread I believe. So far different branches of government have taken different actions so net result has been stalemate but the future is unclear.

PR has always been three years on extensions of stay to even apply and no need to do so without proof of about 60-80k per month income/tax returns (although it is a point system so a few may get approved with less).

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They are trying to prevent dual nationality with special emphasis for those converting - it has become an issue within the last several years. There are a number of posts in the PR pinned thread I believe. So far different branches of government have taken different actions so net result has been stalemate but the future is unclear.

PR has always been three years on extensions of stay to even apply and no need to do so without proof of about 60-80k per month income/tax returns (although it is a point system so a few may get approved with less).

Thanks lopburi

I will go read some of those posts in the PR thread you mentioned.

Hopefully it does not come down to that having to choose just one nationality.

That would be tough for both those who want to gain citizenship in Thailand & also those Thai's who are returning with a newly added citizenship

Edited by flying

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So Arkady, do you know whether there is a law banning a Thai who also holds foreign citizenship from holding office in Thailand? (Many people assume there must be, but I like to see actual laws, not just hear opinions!)

According to another article in TV Abhisit has just admitted in Parliament that he does hold British nationality:

Thailand's prime minister said Thursday (24th Feb) that he may also be British, acknowledging claims by opponents trying to use the issue to bring him before the International Criminal Court.

But the British-born Abhisit Vejjajiva said he considered himself Thai and had not sought to benefit from dual citizenship.

"Now if I travel to England I need to ask for a visa. It is clear that I intend to hold Thai citizenship. Whether that means I hold dual citizenship or not, that's a legal issue," he said in response to questioning in parliament.

He has as good as admitted he hasn't renounced it.

What is the legal situation on this?

Maybe there is no law specifically precluding it because it is assumed that no Thai should hold dual citizenship in the first place?

Over to you Arkady!

There is nothing in the constitution prohibiting Thais with another nationality from holding office. Thais who are not Thai from birth are banned but there is no explicit suggestion that this is because they might hold another nationality. I think you are right. There is nothing in Thai law that specifically recognises dual nationality (or prohibits it) which would make it awkward for constitution drafters to include a reference to dual nationals vis a vis public office. The Interior Ministry would probably object to any constitutional reference that appeared to recognise that Thais who are not interested in holding political office can hold dual nationality. On the other hand, it seems quite normal in other Western countries that have transparent laws regarding dual nationality to require political office holders to renounce other nationalities. I believe Canada, Australia and New Zealand do this among others.

I find Abhisit has been rather disingenuous about his British nationality. It is almost impossible to believe that an intelligent man who went to school in the UK at a time when it was common knowledge that anyone who was born there was British didn't realise his own status. It is also hard to believe that he never had a British passport during his many years in England. He must also have been living in the UK when the 1981 British Nationality Act came out which among other things ended the automatic "jus soli" right and generated a great deal of discussion in the British press as it was quite far reaching. I suppose politicians have to resort to "plausible" denial and pretend to be idiots when it suits them but that is more the style of Thaksin and the old school gangster and military Thai politicians. I wonder if his daughters have taken up their rights to UK citizenship through their British born father.

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Nothing new to report on this topic, while hopeful applicants for Thai citizenship are probably waiting with a mixture of apprehension and boredom to see who will be the next interior minister and whether he or she will articulate any particular policies to do with naturalization or adoption of a husband's Thai citizenship.

Meanwhile I found this interesting post from last year on a thread that is now closed, as it was a poll that had run its course:

"Posted 2010-05-20 00:42:10

hi, would be great to get info, I'm from a schengen country, female, married to thai, 2 children (thai nat.), living in thailand 16 years, applied for thai nationality 2 y ears ago, went fine w. RTPol, several interviews + simple language test, now my case is stucked (15 month!) at "mahathai", ministry of interior affairs (Santhibaan 3?), got somebody to check but this person only found out, I should "donate" 100 000 up(!) to this small group of people who finally decide. I'm not able and willing to pay such a price. anybody out there who was in the same situation + how long took it without bribery? should I get in touch with the anti-corruption deptm.? in fact I got no evidence, just the word of a local politician . thanks for any info

Thanna"

This is not the first story of this nature I have heard. However, I hasten to add that the ministerial guidelines handed out by Special Branch contain a warning about people who claim to be able to help speed up the process in exchange for payment and instruct anyone thus solicited to report the case to Special Branch for investigation and prosecution. Also the poster, Thanna, was clearly not convinced that the story was true.

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I just noticed that the extensive and detailed ministerial guidelines from October 2010 on how to apply for Thai citizenship by naturalization have been removed from Special Branch's website http://www.sbpolice.go.th/, leaving only a copy of the application form and a note saying, "Currently under revision by the Ministry of the Interior" (ขณะนี้กระทรวงมหาดไทยกาลังแก้ไขให้เป็นปัจจุบัน). I wonder what that means. The brief guidelines for women to adopt their husbands' Thai nationality are still up there.

Edited by Arkady

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Hopefully, they are not going to make it more difficult. It would be just my luck that the bar rises before my application is filed next year. The bitch of it is that I can't submit my application sooner as I still haven't got my yellow house registration.

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How do you gave PR without a household registration?

Applying based on being married to a Thai not PR. In answer to your below question, I have no idea how many people have got it this way. All I know is that with PR it is much easier to make the minumum requirement of 50 points.

Edited by GarryP

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I just noticed that the extensive and detailed ministerial guidelines from October 2010 on how to apply for Thai citizenship by naturalization have been removed from Special Branch's website http://www.sbpolice.go.th/, leaving only a copy of the application form and a note saying, "Currently under revision by the Ministry of the Interior" (ขณะนี้กระทรวงมหาดไทยกาลังแก้ไขให้เป็นปัจจุบัน). I wonder what that means. The brief guidelines for women to adopt their husbands' Thai nationality are still up there.

This may have only been temporary as the application form and the guidelines still appear as pdf files in the section (ข้อมูลการให้บริการ > การขอแปลงสัญชาติเป็นไทย )

Incidentally for GarryP, the guidelines list under point number 4 (in the first pdf file) that you need to have PR certificate or been on House Registration (ทร.14)

for not less than 5 years. Note that (ทร.14) is the blue book for Thai/PR's. The yellow book is (ทร.13)

However, the other files (Conditions for scoring applicants, and updated ammendments to the Act. Section 11, I think) allude to persons without PR status and simply being on either ท.ร.13 or ท.ร.14. However, you would still need to show continuous residence of at least 5 years up until applying.

I think some other people on this topic have posted that married to thai applicants without PR can now apply, but it would be good if some applicant could confirm this, or the next person who visit special branch might ask about this also?

.

Edited by Time Traveller

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I just noticed that the extensive and detailed ministerial guidelines from October 2010 on how to apply for Thai citizenship by naturalization have been removed from Special Branch's website http://www.sbpolice.go.th/, leaving only a copy of the application form and a note saying, "Currently under revision by the Ministry of the Interior" (ขณะนี้กระทรวงมหาดไทยกาลังแก้ไขให้เป็นปัจจุบัน). I wonder what that means. The brief guidelines for women to adopt their husbands' Thai nationality are still up there.

This may have only been temporary as the application form and the guidelines still appear as pdf files in the section (ข้อมูลการให้บริการ > การขอแปลงสัญชาติเป็นไทย )

Incidentally for GarryP, the guidelines list under point number 4 (in the first pdf file) that you need to have PR certificate or been on House Registration (ทร.14)

for not less than 5 years. Note that (ทร.14) is the blue book for Thai/PR's. The yellow book is (ทร.13)

However, the other files (Conditions for scoring applicants, and updated ammendments to the Act. Section 11, I think) allude to persons without PR status and simply being on either ท.ร.13 or ท.ร.14. However, you would still need to show continuous residence of at least 5 years up until applying.

I think some other people on this topic have posted that married to thai applicants without PR can now apply, but it would be good if some applicant could confirm this, or the next person who visit special branch might ask about this also?

.

Oh, false alarm. I see that they have now broken it up into separate sections and you have to click on each heading. Previously it was all just one file. Thanks for pointing that out. It must just the application form which is being revised and they fill that in for you anyway. I will have a look when I have time to see if anything has been changed in the guidelines since last year.

I don't know if any males have yet got their Thai nationality with Thai wives and without PR, following the amendments in the 2008 Act but Special Branch told me last year that around half a dozen had passed the interview at the Ministry. The Ministry seems reluctant to make the changes clear in the guidelines which contain the bit you mention about the requirement to have a blue ทร.14 tabien baan for 5 years with no exceptions mentioned. I think this is deliberate obfuscation to put people off from applying but Special Branch will quickly tell you, it is not necessary, if you have a Thai wife. In fact, it is also not necessary to have the ทร.14 for 5 years, even if you have PR and no Thai wife. The Nationality Act only requires 5 years' residence in Thailand for those without Thai wives and doesn't mention that this has to be with PR. The last I heard, they were counting time on a work permit towards the 5 years. Obviously you get less points without PR but I don't know how much weighting the Ministry puts on the score, as long as you pass. The letter Special Branch sends them doesn't mention the score but the details must be there for them to see in your file, if they are interested. The guy from the NIA who interviewed me last year told me that the majority of applicants for naturalization were now applying on the basis of having Thai wives but no PR. This trend will continue as more people get to know the law and no new PRs are being issued. I am convinced that the expectation of a steadily increasing flow of applicants with Thai wives but no PR (who also don't have to sing the two anthems) is the reason that attitudes hardened at the Ministry resulting in the request to renounce existing nationality.

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A few more announcements of small batches of people other than stateless persons getting citizenship have appeared in the Royal Gazette recently, including some this month. That makes 20-30 this year so far. Most are males with Chinese sounding names but there were a couple of females naturalized and a couple more who got in through the Thai husband window. I didn't spot any farang names in my brief survey.

There is a steady stream of Thai nationality renunciations with some approved nearly every month to opt in favour of Singaporean, German, Dutch, Taiwanese etc nationality. Looks like a net outflow is going on and they ought to replenish stock!

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Arkady, would you be able to post a link to the relevant area of the Royal Gazette? Thanks

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Arkady, would you be able to post a link to the relevant area of the Royal Gazette? Thanks

Go into the website here http://www.ratchakitcha.soc.go.th/RKJ/index/index.htm and look for the search function for announcements. Key in สัญชาติ and you should get several pages of announcements to do with Thai citizenship.

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so...small update.

We get a phone call today for us to come in on the 12th of July for a final interview for my wife's application. Last stage I was told.

Unfortunately, we are out of the country and not likely to be back until the first half of next year!

So looks like my wife will miss that boat for the time being! And it also looks like that the applications have been held up because of the election (given the timing!)

Bugger.

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