How to apply for a Marriage Visa (Thai Wife)

Introduction: Navigating the process of obtaining a Marriage Visa for a Thai spouse can be a crucial step for foreigners wishing to reside in Thailand. At Bangkok Visa Services, with our 17 years of experience in the industry, we often guide individuals through the intricacies of converting a Non-Immigrant O Visa to what is colloquially known as a Marriage Visa. While officially termed the Non-Immigrant O (Thai Wife) Visa, its availability to foreign nationals legally married to a Thai person makes it a sought-after option. Throughout this article, we will explore the requirements, application processes, and important considerations for those seeking to acquire or renew this visa, drawing from our expertise and close professional relationship with Thai Immigration.

Converting Non-Immigrant O Visa to Marriage Visa

Being in the Thai Visa Service industry for 17 years now, we are aware of the common enquiries from foreigners regarding how to convert a Non-Immigrant O Visa to a Marriage Visa. There is no official term as a Marriage Visa, although it is widely known among foreigners. Non-Immigrant O Visa is a visa type that can be obtained for various reasons, one of which is being married to a Thai national. This visa is available to all foreign nationals who are legally married to a Thai person. The official title for the visa is a Non-Immigrant O (Thai Wife) Visa. It can be obtained at the Royal Thai Embassy in the home country or at Bangkok Immigration, and its validity is for 90 days, renewable yearly 30 days before its expiry. Any foreigner who has entered Thailand on a Tourist Visa or at least on an Exempt Visa Stamp (30) days can apply for a Non-Immigrant O Visa at Bangkok Immigration.

Working with Foreigners Married to Thais

As the leading visa company in Bangkok, we work closely with foreigners married to Thais and wish to apply for a Marriage Visa. Regardless of if you apply for the visa while in Thailand or outside the Kingdom, you will need to ensure you have all the correct documents. As visa experts and having a close professional relationship with Thai Immigration, we know what paperwork is required and will ensure that you have everything before your application is submitted. This means that you will have the best chance of your visa being accepted the first time.

Application Process for Non-Immigrant O Visa / Marriage Visa

In many ways, Non-Immigrant O Visa is one of the most straightforward visas to obtain – if you meet the requirements. As you can apply at a Thai Royal Embassy or Consulate before you travel to Thailand, or you can apply at Bangkok Immigration even if you have entered Thailand on an Exempt Visa Stamp. If you decide to apply outside of the Kingdom, the initial application will be for a Non-Immigrant O Visa, valid for 90 days. This visa can be renewed yearly based on having a Thai Wife at a Thai Immigration Department when you arrive. You will require all the necessary documents to support the application for renewal of Non-Immigrant O Visa. Along with the supporting documents, you will also have to show the proof of income or money in the bank.

Application Process
Application Process

If you choose to apply for a visa in Thailand, you can apply for a Non-Immigrant O Thai Wife (Marriage Visa) at a Thai Immigration office. In Bangkok, the application would be submitted at Chaeng Wattana Immigration Office. For most people, this is the best and most practical option as they will have access to the documentation they need and can employ the services of a professional visa company to assist them. Typically, the application time for a Non-Immigrant O Marriage Visa is between four and six weeks, but we always endeavor to make the waiting time as short as possible.

Requirements for a Thai Marriage Visa

To apply for a Non-Immigrant O visa at Bangkok Immigration at the very first time, you will also have to submit an Affirmation of Freedom to Marry Certificate which you have obtained from your Embassy in Bangkok prior to marriage registration.

Financial Requirements for Thai Marriage Visa

As with all long-term Thai visas, anyone applying for this visa must have the financial means to support themselves in Thailand. Therefore, the applicant must have a minimum of THB 400,000 held in a Thai bank account for a minimum of two months before the application. The account must be in the sole name of the applicant, as joint accounts will not be permissible.

Thai baht banknotes
Thai baht banknotes

Income Option

Alternatively, you could prove that you have an income of no less than THB 40,000 per month. The amount can include earned income, rental income, pension income or any other source of regular income. It is worth noting that if this income is from outside of the Kingdom and paid to a bank account outside Thailand, proving you have this income may be tricky with many embassies no longer issuing an affidavit confirming their income.

Combining Savings and Income

It is possible to combine both savings and income amounting to at least THB 40,000 per month. To prove that you have the necessary funds, you will need to show an updated copy of your bank book (we would recommend that the update is no greater than 72 hours before the application). Your banks will also need to issue a letter confirming that the money has been in your account for two months before the application date, and, in some cases, that the money was transferred from overseas.

Working with a Marriage Visa

Can I work in Thailand with a Marriage Visa? If you have a Thai Non-Immigrant O Marriage Visa, you can apply for a work permit, but the visa alone does not permit you to work in the Kingdom. If you are currently working in Thailand, you will almost certainly have a Thai Non-Immigrant B Visa and work permit.

Additional Points to Consider

If you hold a Non-Immigrant O Marriage visa, you will be required to report to the Thai Immigration every 90 days, a process known as 90 Day Reporting. It can be done in person, online or by a representative such as a visa company.

If you intend to leave the Kingdom during the duration of your visa, you will need to apply for a Re-entry Permit before you go. This can be done at a Thai Immigration Office or at the airport and are available in single or multiple entry form. The Re-entry Permit number should be entered on your landing card in a Visa number column, when you return to Thailand to ensure that the officer doesn’t miss your valid visa and stamp your passport with the correct permission to stay.

Of course, should you get divorced from your Thai spouse, your Thai Marriage Visa will be canceled with immediate effect. It will mean that you need to leave the Kingdom and re-enter on an alternative visa. In the short-term, this would typically be a Thai Tourist Visa or Visa on Arrival. It will depend on your circumstances, and our Thai Visa Experts have seen how different scenarios might impact visa changes and are adept at providing tailored guidance.

Conclusion: Understanding the process of applying for a Marriage Visa (Non Immigrant O Visa) is crucial for foreigners married to Thai nationals. Whether applying within or outside Thailand, meticulous attention to required documents and financial prerequisites is essential for a successful application. Furthermore, staying informed about reporting obligations, work permit regulations, and potential implications of divorce is important for navigating the complexities of this visa.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

The required visa for foreigners legally married to a Thai person is a Non Immigrant O (Thai Wife) Visa, which is commonly known as a Marriage Visa.

The visa can be obtained at the Royal Thai Embassy in the home country or at Bangkok Immigration. The initial validity of the visa is for 90 days, which can be renewed yearly 30 days prior to its expiry.

The applicant must have a minimum of THB 400,000 held in a Thai bank account for at least two months before the application. Alternatively, a regular income of no less than THB 40,000 per month can also be used to meet the financial requirement.

The Marriage Visa does not permit the holder to work in Thailand. However, they can apply for a work permit separately.

Holders of the Non-Immigrant O Marriage Visa are required to report to Thai Immigration every 90 days. This can be done in person, online, or through a representative such as a visa company.

A Re-entry Permit needs to be obtained before leaving the Kingdom to ensure that the visa remains valid upon returning to Thailand.

In the event of divorce, the Thai Marriage Visa will be canceled immediately, and the individual will need to leave the Kingdom and re-enter on an alternative visa.

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