Expats in Thailand forced to inform government of all job changes

Published:  10 May at 6 PM
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Tagged: Thailand, Jobs
Yet another new law aimed at expats in Thailand came into force at the end of last month.

According to an announcement by the Thai Labour Ministry, all migrant workers in the Kingdom, including working expats, must inform the government about their job changes. The new law encompasses not just established expat workers who change jobs, but also those who leave their jobs and those who’ve arrived to take on an existing job. Fines for failing to comply start at 10,000 baht and soars to an unbelievable 200,000 baht – some £4,700 – for those who’ve deliberately ignored protocols and violated existing regulations.

Those arriving from neighbouring countries and taking on jobs requiring unskilled or low-skilled labour have just seven days to notify the authorities via a visit to their local employment office. Employers are not expected to help with this process as they’re not responsible for its completion. Expat workers and professionals have 15 days to report their arrival to take up a job, their leaving of a job or their changing employers.

Again, the Labour Ministry is stressing it’s not the employer’s responsibility to comply with this law. The message to expatriate workers at all levels seems clear enough, as in ‘don’t expect any help as it’s nothing to do with your employer – it’s your responsibility’. The law itself has been on the statute books for a good while, but is only now being enforced, with the onus being dumped on employees due to employers’ total lack of interest in its enforcement. Whether or not enforcement at this late stage will be evenly applied remains to be seen.
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