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Working without a Permit

Working without a PermitAs stated before on this website, you need to have a valid work permit in Thailand and have your work permit on you while at work or you could face deportation or a large fine. The Thai Business Visa does not allow you to work in Thailand. You will need to use this visa to obtain a valid work permit. Depending on the type of work you will be doing different requirements need to be met.

This is only the fines and penalties you will get if you are caught without a valid work permit.

Penalties – No Work Permit

If you are caught by immigration or Thai police working in Thailand without a valid work permit you will be caught and brought before a court. You can get a prison sentence of 5 years and then be deported and/or a fine of between 2,000THB and 100,000THB. Those who have been teaching in Thailand illegally have usually been sentenced to 2years in prison with deportation afterwards.

Penalties – Have a Work Permit but wrong occupation

If you have a work permit and you are doing work what is not described in your work permit then you can also be arrested and find up to 20,000THB. As an example you might have a work permit as a manager at a restaurant however you have been caught teaching on week-ends. This will be a fine as you have not amended your work permit (See: work permit costs) to reflect your new occupation.

Penalties- Work Permit not on you

If immigration comes to your place of work and you do not have your work permit on you then you can be arrested and fined for up to 10,000THB. The most common instance are those who are teaching in Thailand and the school insists that you have to leave your work permit at school. This creates problems should you be stopped.

Penalties – No Work Permit in Company

If a company is caught with workers who do not have a valid work permit the fine can be up to 100,000THB. This would be based on per person. If you have 10 illegal workers then the fine would be 1,000,000THB.

If you are caught without a work permit more likely than not you will be arrested. You will appear before a judge in 2-3 days depending on where you had been caught as you will be moved to the Thai Immigration Detention Centre (IDC) in Bangkok for processing. You will appear and be fined and a sentence handed down. This in the past has been 2 years or simply a heavy fine and deportation. This might affect your return to Thailand so also speak to a lawyer should you be arrested to ensure that you are not blacklisted in Thailand because of the incident.

If you need advice about work permits or if you have been arrested or know of someone who has been arrested then ensure that you/they have an attorney present when you appear before court.


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