Chiang Mai IO actual proof of US income

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tamada
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Chiang Mai IO actual proof of US income

Post by tamada » July 12, 2018, 10:54 am

Just reading on the big forum how there's been a change of policy at Chiang Mai immigration where a US retiree must provide actual proof of income in addition to the affidavit they swear to in front of a US Consular officer.

Maybe just a heads-up in case this 'new' edict has come from on high and may possibly be requested by Udon IO some time in the future. Udon immigration still seems to be mostly one of the more agreeable offices to conduct business with but maybe better to start gathering bank account statements, etc., just in case.

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Re: Chiang Mai IO actual proof of US income

Post by Giggle » July 12, 2018, 11:25 am

The Nong Khai Immigration office hasn't accepted Embassy affidavits of pension for several years. Must show money in a Thai bank. There is no consistency, no standard.

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Re: Chiang Mai IO actual proof of US income

Post by parrot » July 12, 2018, 3:08 pm

As of a few days ago, the US Embassy letter is good for 6 months without further proof of income......at Udon Immigration.

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Re: Chiang Mai IO actual proof of US income

Post by Lone Star » July 12, 2018, 4:18 pm

parrot wrote:
July 12, 2018, 3:08 pm
As of a few days ago, the US Embassy letter is good for 6 months without further proof of income......at Udon Immigration.
The same was true for me 8 days ago.
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Re: Chiang Mai IO actual proof of US income

Post by tutone » July 12, 2018, 5:10 pm

If that were the case, what would be the point in getting an affidavit? If U.S. expats no longer paid the $50 bucks a pop for the affidavit then the State Dept. or Embassy (who gets the money?) would be out perhaps several hundred thousand dollars. I have no clue as to how many get the affidavit every year but if 2000 do then that's $100,000. I have read that there are as many as 25,000 U.S. expats in Thailand. Surely at least 10% are retirees that use the income affidavit. Anyway, numbers aside, if this is true the consulate/embassy should be notified of the change in Thai immigration policy and perhaps some accomodation could be reached. I personally have no problem with verifying my income to reach the 65,000 Baht per month threshold, but providing an affidavit is so much easier than providing the multitude of financial statements that I would need to verify my income, i.e. bank statements, social security statement, interest and dividends, etc.

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Re: Chiang Mai IO actual proof of US income

Post by Lone Star » July 12, 2018, 5:17 pm

tutone wrote:
July 12, 2018, 5:10 pm
If that were the case, what would be the point in getting an affidavit? If U.S. expats no longer paid the $50 bucks a pop for the affidavit then the State Dept. or Embassy (who gets the money?) would be out perhaps several hundred thousand dollars. I have no clue as to how many get the affidavit every year but if 2000 do then that's $100,000. I have read that there are as many as 25,000 U.S. expats in Thailand. Surely at least 10% are retirees that use the income affidavit. Anyway, numbers aside, if this is true the consulate/embassy should be notified of the change in Thai immigration policy and perhaps some accomodation could be reached. I personally have no problem with verifying my income to reach the 65,000 Baht per month threshold, but providing an affidavit is so much easier than providing the multitude of financial statements that I would need to verify my income, i.e. bank statements, social security statement, interest and dividends, etc.
The last time I had a conversation with a US Embassy official at one of the Outreach locations, she told me that the US and Thailand governments reached that affidavit agreement for US citizens. According to her, each country has the prerogative to work out something for their citizens as well. I would think that if the official policy changed for US expats, we would have been notified in some way.

This may be just one instance with one expat or one immigration office that is requiring something additional.

I've sent an email to the Embassy, but I plan to call them tomorrow and find out if they are aware of this rumor. If this is the new procedure, I'd like to start collecting and copying my ATM receipts for next year. :)
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Re: Chiang Mai IO actual proof of US income

Post by parrot » July 12, 2018, 5:19 pm

Twenty-one years of renewing my visa......I've found reading other forums (Pattaya, Phuket, Nongkai, CM) or listening to second-hand accounts most often does not equate with actual fact in Udon. For whatever reasons......Udon Immigration dances to a different drummer, whether it's on retirement visas, marriage visas, income certification, or just plain friendliness. I was there today for my 90 day check......in and out in 10....but while I was there waiting my turn, a younger immigration official asked if I needed assistance....and then pulled over a chair so I could sit.
Thanks for your feedback, LS.

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Re: Chiang Mai IO actual proof of US income

Post by Giggle » July 12, 2018, 5:41 pm

Nong Khai does not accept affidavits from Embassies. They want to see proof of money in a Thai bank. This has been going on for three years now.

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Re: Chiang Mai IO actual proof of US income

Post by Stantheman » July 13, 2018, 1:38 am

Giggle wrote:
July 12, 2018, 5:41 pm
Nong Khai does not accept affidavits from Embassies. They want to see proof of money in a Thai bank. This has been going on for three years now.
And it would no good to challenge this through the Embassy as they will just restate their agreement with Thai government, may forward complaint to Thai government and the Thai government will do their usual lip service with nothing happening.

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Re: Chiang Mai IO actual proof of US income

Post by Lone Star » July 13, 2018, 6:12 am

Stantheman wrote:
July 13, 2018, 1:38 am
Giggle wrote:
July 12, 2018, 5:41 pm
Nong Khai does not accept affidavits from Embassies. They want to see proof of money in a Thai bank. This has been going on for three years now.
And it would no good to challenge this through the Embassy as they will just restate their agreement with Thai government, may forward complaint to Thai government and the Thai government will do their usual lip service with nothing happening.
Yes, not much can be done about an IO making an additional request.

The Embassy would only be able to tell me if this event in ChM is going to be the norm Kingdom-wide. I just want to be prepared.

As parrot alluded in his post, my gut tells me that it is an isolated event with that expat or that office.
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Re: Chiang Mai IO actual proof of US income

Post by Lone Star » July 13, 2018, 1:13 pm

Couple of things ...

First, the Consulate in ChM informed me that there is no new policy regarding the income letter, but referred me to the Thai Immigration office if I had further questions.

Second, I am aware through a friend in ChM, who I spoke with this morning, that he had a friend go through the extension process yesterday at the ChM IO, and the process was the usual that he has experienced for a decade. The IO only required his notarized affidavit. No "proof" was requested. Yeah, friend of a friend. I know. But it's better than not knowing anything at all.

Apparently, the expat in ChM who had to provide "proof" of income was singled out for some reason by the Immigration Officer, which is well within the officer's authority to do so.
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Re: Chiang Mai IO actual proof of US income

Post by parrot » July 13, 2018, 1:41 pm

Thanks for the followup, LS.

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Re: Chiang Mai IO actual proof of US income

Post by Hoopoe » July 13, 2018, 4:55 pm

I think that if you look at the bottom of the info on what is required , for ,retirement /marriage extensions it also states AND ANY OTHER DOCUMENTS REQUIRED BY THE IMMIGRATION OFFICER , so that leaves it open to anything ,at the discretion of the officer, so proof of income is just another document to them , so they maybe possibly starting to get wise to the American Avidavidt , were no proof is shown to get such a document , , so for my penny's worth i'd take note of this and prepare in advance ,

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Re: Chiang Mai IO actual proof of US income

Post by Lone Star » July 13, 2018, 5:59 pm

Hoopoe wrote:
July 13, 2018, 4:55 pm
I think that if you look at the bottom of the info on what is required , for ,retirement /marriage extensions it also states AND ANY OTHER DOCUMENTS REQUIRED BY THE IMMIGRATION OFFICER , so that leaves it open to anything ,at the discretion of the officer, so proof of income is just another document to them , so they maybe possibly starting to get wise to the American Avidavidt , were no proof is shown to get such a document , , so for my penny's worth i'd take note of this and prepare in advance ,
Yes, we have addressed the fact that officers have the authority to ask for anything. :)

What a particular officer in ChM may have been "wise to" was one particular individual applying for the visa. After investigating more this afternoon in talking with a different friend in ChM, he heard of one similar request for "proof", but it was for someone who was a new applicant for a retirement visa. There may have been something about that applicant that sent up a red flag. I plan to keep getting feedback on this issue.

In the meantime, I'll be saving my ATM receipts just in case (but I don't think this is a change for everyone). :)

NOTE: I could be incorrect, but as I recall, expats from some other countries are required to present proof of their incomes to their home countries in order to receive an affidavit, not to Thai Immigration.
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Re: Chiang Mai IO actual proof of US income

Post by parrot » July 13, 2018, 6:35 pm

" so they maybe possibly starting to get wise to the American Avidavidt "

Get over it. Over the years, I've met a few Europeans who were working the system, but I've yet to met an American who didn't qualify for at least a marriage visa......in 20+ years.

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