This article also appeared in the Phuket News September 4, 2022.
Starting this month, affluent expats will be offered another option to live, work and invest in Thailand through the upcoming Long-Term Resident (LTR) visa program which will allow those who meet the program requirements to stay in the country for up to 10 years. years.
The program aims to give expats an easier way to stay in the country, removing many of the annual and quarterly reporting requirements imposed on regular non-B visa holders. LTR visa holders will also be eligible for several other benefits that are not granted to regular visa holders.
What is the Long Term Resident Visa Program?
The LTR program is the latest move by the Thai government to attract wealthy individuals and highly skilled workers to the country amid the rise of remote working. As Thailand is already home to several multinational companies and has an active incubator and startup community, the government hopes that the additional benefits brought by the program will attract new “high potential” residents who will not only bring new technologies and skills in the country, but also contribute to domestic spending, thus fueling Thailand’s economic recovery from COVID-19. The government aims to attract at least one million wealthy or highly qualified people through this program.
What are the benefits of the LTR visa program?
The program provides qualified individuals and their dependents with a visa to stay in Thailand that will be valid for five years and renewable for another five, giving it a total validity period of 10 years. Holders will also be entitled to several benefits that can be divided between tax and non-tax incentives.
- Tax exemptions on all income generated abroad.
- Reduced personal income tax rate of 17% per year for highly qualified professionals.
- Expedited services at airports.
- Use of the one-stop shop for the renewal of visas and work permits.
- Digital work permit.
- Address report annually rather than every 90 days.
- Exemption from the 4:1 ratio of Thai employees to expatriates.
Who will be eligible for the LTR visa program in Thailand?
The Office of the Board of Investment states that LTR visas are available to five types of foreigners: Wealthy Global Citizens, Digital Nomads, Wealthy Retirees, Highly Skilled Individuals, and Their Dependents. Each type has different requirements.
Apply for an LTR visa
Although the requirements and processes seem simple on paper, the LTR visa application involves many steps and meets various prerequisites. It is important to keep in mind that this is not an accelerated program, which means that it will take time for applicants to prove they meet the qualifications, submit the correct documents and then move on. through formal review for final approval. It can be complex.
The documents required for each type of foreigner vary; and even among applicants in the same category, requirements are reviewed on a case-by-case basis. To ensure the likelihood of your application being approved, it is important to enlist the help of experts in the field who will check your eligibility, ensure that you meet all the criteria before applying, and submit the correct applications.