90-day reporting is a necessary evil for any non-Thai living in Thailand. What it means is, if you are in Thailand for 90 days or longer (3 months), you must report to Thai immigration and tell them where you live. Regardless that you may have lived at the same address for 10 years, like me, or that you are on a retirement visa, you work as a teacher, you are married to a Thai or you own your own business. 90-day reporting in Thailand is mandatory and, if you forget to do it, it can become expensive quickly.
For anyone teaching in Thailand, keeping up on your 90-day reporting is something you must always remember to do so, in answer to the question “When does a teacher in Thailand have to do 90-day reporting to Thai immigration?”, the answer is an easy one “Every 90 days”.
However, there are a few more things you need to know before you do.
90-day reporting registers your address – The 90-day reporting in Thailand for any teacher or anyone else does nothing but register your address with Thai immigration. It doesn’t extend your work permit, it doesn’t make you legal, and it certainly doesn’t help you work towards permanent residency. It’s just a Thai formality you must remember to do.
Where do you do your 90-day reporting? – It must be done at the immigration office that has jurisdiction over where you live. That means, if you’re in Bangkok you will need to go to the Chang Wattana immigration office, if you live in Chiang Mai the immigration office there will cover it.
So don’t expect to be visiting Bangkok from Phuket and suddenly realize you need to do your 90-day reporting, as you can’t do it in Bangkok.
Must you do it on the 90th day? – The nice thing about 90-day reporting, if there is one, is that you don’t have to do it on the 90th day after you arrived in Thailand. You can do it up to 7 days before the 90th day and up to 7 days after. Anything after the 97th day, however, and that’s when you start racking up fines.
What happens if you forget? – Technically, you can be arrested, although in 10 years of living in Thailand I’ve never heard of anyone, teacher or otherwise, who has been. I’m sure it does happen, though.
The main inconvenience, and expense, of forgetting to do your 90-day reporting is you will be fined 2,000 baht (around $65). If you are arrested, however, the fine in that instance, along with other penalties including deportation in the most severe cases, can be up to 5,000 baht.($161). So….don’t forget.
Do you have to do it in person? – If you’re busy, can’t get time off school or, frankly, just don’t want to waste 3 hours of your time at Thai immigration, there are now two other options available for you instead of you going in person.
a) You can authorize someone else to do it for you. Anyone. I’ve had one of my local motorcycle taxi drivers do it for me a couple of times as, for a fee to him of 400 baht (200 baht for the journey there and back and 200 baht because he is reliable and runs a lot of errands for me), it’s all taken care of and a few hours later he returns with my receipt.
b) You can now send in your 90-day reporting via registered mail. You’ll find the form you need to print out and instructions on what to do at the Thailand Immigration website.
If your school does it for you – Some schools take care of the 90-day reporting for all their teachers. If yours does, it still may behove you to check on the 90th day to make sure they have. One school I worked for completely forgot about it, and myself and four other teachers were suddenly liable for the 2,000 baht fine.
From then on, I insisted on doing it myself.