What is a Dependent Child Visa?

When planning to stay in Thailand for an extended period, bringing dependent children along is not only allowable under Thai law but also a possibility under the Non-Immigrant “O” Visa for accompanying family members. However, the process of obtaining a dependent child visa can be complex and entail the submission of various documents. It is crucial to understand the qualifications, requirements, and application process to ensure a smooth immigration journey for both the sponsor and the child. In this article, we will delve into the intricacies of obtaining a dependent child visa in Thailand, including eligibility criteria, necessary documentation, visa application procedures, and post-visa responsibilities for the child and the sponsor.

Understanding the Dependent Child Visa Process in Thailand

It is common for those that intend to stay in Thailand for extended periods to want to bring along their dependent children. This is allowable under Thai law.

Family enjoying time in Thailand.
Family enjoying time in Thailand.

Immigration Process for Dependent Children

The immigration process can however be somewhat complex and require the preparation and submission of a lot of paperwork. Note that acquiring a dependent child visa will in large part depend on the kind of visa the sponsor or parent has.

Non-Immigrant “O” Visa for Accompanying Family Members

The kind of visa you will apply for is the Non-Immigrant “O” Visa for accompanying family members. This can be applied for dependent children, spouses, or parents.

Who Qualifies for this Visa?

  • The children or step-children of the sponsor parent working or living in Thailand can qualify for this visa.
  • They must be under the age of 20 years. Children over the age of 20 years may only be considered under certain medication conditions that make them legally dependent.

Understanding the Visa Requirements

Given the complexities and many requirements, it is advisable to get in touch with professionals even before you travel with your child. Depending on which country you are traveling from, you may be required to provide additional official paperwork that would be more difficult to obtain if already in the Kingdom.

Visa Holders and Proving Dependence

  • The sponsor should be a long term visa holder. The dependent child must be their immediate relative.
  • Part of the dependent child visa application process requires that you prove that the child is your dependent. This requires official documentation that ascertains the relationship between the sponsor and child.

Required Documentation for Proof of Dependence

This should take the form of a birth certificate that indicates that the sponsor is the child’s parent. If the child is adopted, the adoption papers will need to be provided. This should include an official translation of the documentation in Thai. The documents will also need to be legalized by your embassy in Thailand before submission to the immigration office.

In our experience, the Visa Application Process

At Thai Visa Expert, we’ve found that the first step is to apply for a single entry visa for the child that will grant them a stay of 90 days. During this first 90-day period, the immigration office will seek to verify the documentation and information provided in your application.

Based on many times of going through this process, once the verification is done and all is in order, you may then apply for longer extensions on this visa.

Applying for Dependent Child Visa in Thailand

You may apply for extensions of up to a year at the local Thai immigration office thereafter. This can however only be done when you have at least 21 days validity remaining on the existing visa.

This visa does not permit your child to work while in the Kingdom. If they want to work, they will need to follow the necessary process for applying for a Non-Immigrant “B” visa and work permit. This should be done through their employers.

Documentation Required

  • Duly completed and signed application forms
  • An original passport with at least 6 months validity
  • Recent color passport-sized photos on a white background
  • Birth certificate or adoption papers of the child
  • Copy of the sponsoring parent’s information page and Thai visa page from their passport
  • Copy of sponsoring parent’s work permit
  • Visa fee (amount will depend on which Thai Embassy you are applying at)

Documentation required may vary according to the Thai embassy or consulate you are applying through. More so for sponsor parents with work permits. Additional information may be sought on the employer including employee guarantee letter, company registration, shareholding list, company financial statements, and VAT.

Enquire from us or the embassy to get the most up-to-date list of requirements. We recommend making this enquiry before traveling with the child so that if additional paperwork is required, you can easily obtain it. You may still apply for this visa when already in Thailand, but you run the risk of lacking certain documentation that can only be obtained from the other country.

Post-Visa Procedures

Just like the sponsor, the child is expected to submit a 90-day report at the nearest local immigration office. This should be done every 90 days, for the duration of their stay. It is to verify current address details. It may be done in person, through the mail or via an agent. You can also report online, but this can only happen from the second 90-day reporting. The first report must have been done in person or through the mail.

It should also be done within 15 days before or 7 days after your 90-day period expires. Failure to make this report can attract a fine of THB 3,000. It is however not a requirement if you have already traveled out of the country by the time the report was due.

The visa is a single entry visa, however, when applying for extensions, it is possible to get a re-entry permit. This will be helpful if you intend to travel in and out of Thailand repeatedly with your child on the same visa.

Conclusion: Understanding and navigating the process of obtaining a dependent child visa for Thailand can be complex and require thorough preparation. Seeking professional guidance and early consultation can significantly improve the chances of a successful application. With the right support, you can ensure all necessary documentation is in order and avoid any complications that may arise from inadequate preparation. It’s important to adhere to the visa requirements and reporting obligations to maintain a smooth and lawful stay for both you and your dependent child.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Children or step-children under the age of 20 years of a sponsor parent working or living in Thailand can qualify for this visa. Citizens over 20 years may be considered under certain conditions of legal dependency.

It is advisable to seek professional advice before traveling with your child to ensure you are aware of additional official paperwork that may be required. Seeking early consultation can improve the chances of approval from the first submission of your application.

The sponsor should be a long-term visa holder and must hold a Non-Immigrant “B” visa and a valid work permit, a retirement visa with dependents under the age of 50 years, or a Non-Immigrant “O” visa with a valid work permit for working in foundations and charities.

Part of the application process requires official documentation proving the relationship between the sponsor and the child, such as a birth certificate or adoption papers, along with an official translation of the documentation in Thai and legalization by the embassy in Thailand.

The first step is to apply for a single entry visa for the child which allows a 90-day stay, with the possibility of applying for extensions of up to a year at the local Thai immigration office thereafter.

After obtaining the visa, the child is expected to submit a 90-day report at the nearest local immigration office every 90 days for the duration of their stay, as well as adhere to other visa requirements.

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