Address Registration (TM30) – All you need to know about it and why it matters to you
What’s it all about?
The TM30 and its underlying laws are about the obligation of a landlord (or house master, possessor, manager) to report the stay of any foreigner (non-Thai national) in his/her property. All foreigners staying in Thailand and their hosts should be very well aware of this.
The law with regard to the TM30 and the obligation to report a foreigner’s stay have been in place for a long time, but the government has started to enforce it more strictly lately, and changed some of the procedures with regards to your 90-days reporting and extension of visa.
IF YOU’RE RENTING, CHECK IF YOUR LANDLORD HAS REPORTED YOUR STAY
What is the purpose of the (new) regulations?
Basically, with the TM30 form, the government aims to know exactly where each foreigner is staying all the time. Every host, no matter Thai or foreigner, has the obligation to report the stay of a foreigner within 24 hours.
If the reporting is not done within the 24 hours period immigration can fine the landlord if just one day late or when some documents are not complete.
Who should act?
Officially and practically, the responsibility to report the stay of a foreigner rests with the host: the landlord of a property, the hotel or the service apartment. Untimely reporting of a foreigner can be penalized.
IF YOU’RE A FOREIGNER STAYING IN THAILAND LONG ENOUGH
TO GO TO IMMIGRATION FOR A VISA EXTENSION OR 90-DAY REPORTING
YOU BETTER CHECK IF YOUR LANDLORD REPORTED YOUR STAY
However, if you are the guest or tenant, you can’t ignore TM30 either: Most of the time the registration is needed when going to the Immigration office for a service, such as the 90-day reporting and sometimes for visa extentions. It still depends on the officer in charge that you’re facing, but at such moment that you may find out that your landlord did not report your stay and you will have to explain where you stayed all that time. There is also a risk that you as a tenant (or guest) may be fined instead of the landlord.
How to report?
As a foreigner staying in Thailand, you should prepare:
(a) a copy of your passport (photo page)
(b) a copy of the visa page in your passport
(c) a copy of the departure card
The landlord should prepare:
(a) a copy of the title deed of the property
(b) a copy of the rental contract
(c) a copy of the Landlord ID card
The landlord can outsource the reporting to somebody else, (the foreigner for example) a letter (Power Of Attorney) is then required to authorize this person to do the reporting (TM30) on behalf of landlord with stamps from the tax office attached on this letter.
Power Of Attorney letter to authorize another person performing the address registration
Official stamps from the tax authority office that needs to be affixed to letter from landlord giving authority to another person.
The tax stamps can be bought at the Phuket Revenue Offices
Then, your landlord or property manager or yourself should report in either of these ways:
1. Most common is to go to the Immigration Office in Phuket Town and fill out the TM30 form there. (if there isn’t an immigration office in your area, you have to report to the Police Office.)
2. The landlord can also register online on https://extranet.immigration.go.th/. (but the Landlord needs to setup an online account with immigration first in able to perform the online address registration)
After registration, the landlord (or foreigner) will get a stamped return slip that the tenant (guest) should put In his passport and use it when going to Immigration for a service.
- For tourist without a long term visa or extension : Every time you leave Thailand and return with a new (arrival and) departure card in your passport, you have to be reported again, because your departure card number has changed.
- For long term residents on long term visas or extensions : The address registration has to be done at your first entry into Thailand or when moving permanently to a new address .
- The official law is that for tourist without long term visas or extensions, even without leaving the country (so with the same departure card number), a foreigner still has to be reported every time that he/she changes to a new place. The owner of that place has to report the foreigner, even if it’s just for 1 day. So if you’re making a trip out in the countryside for the weekend and you’re staying in a guesthouse there, your stay for that weekend has to be reported and once you return to your primary place, you’ve got to be reported again.
- If you own your own property (for example a condo), that does not acquit you of the obligation to report yourself.
- If you have a yellow house book (tabienbaan) or co-own a house, that does not acquit you of the obligation to report yourself.
In principle, the prime responsibility of reporting a foreigner rests with the property owner, not with the tenant or traveler or with the agent or property manager, but all could experience trouble when the papers are not in good order.
Each individual foreigner needs to be reported, not just the head of a family or one person in a group of travelers.
Are the authorities that serious?
It’s unlikely that you will have serious trouble when a landlord or a guesthouse/Hotel or service apartment has not reported your stay. Unlikely too that there will be any issues when you stay in Thailand for a short time and leave without having any contact with Immigration.
But the moment you show up at Immigration to deal with some paperwork, you may have to show where you stayed and then it’s too late.
What to do when you discover you haven’t been reported
Inform the Landlord, guesthouse/Hotel or service apartment that you are not reported yet at immigration and ask them to do as soon as possible and ask for the reporting slip which you can put in your passport to avoid any problem for the future.
Alternatively you can do the reporting yourself as long you have the required documentation.
If you are a tenant (or guest):
Make sure to check with your landlord within the first week of your stay that he/she has reported you. If the landlord doesn’t want to go, you could consider staying at another place, or you could report yourself at Immigration on behalf of the landlord, but then you need to get his/her proxy first (With the Power Of Attorney letter).
Power of Attorney letter:
When using the Power of Attorney letter this must be stamped with a 10 Baht Tax Stamp which can be bought at your local tax office or at most book shops.
If you’re a landlord:
Report your foreign guest/tenant within 24 hours.
The 90 days reporting slip which you have possible in your passport does NOT count as an address registration.