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JOHN CHAN

Transfer money to Thailand for Retirement

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Hi, I am asking this question for an American friend who likes to stay in Thailand on Retirement Visa. To our understanding, immigration laws allow a person to bring INTO Thailand not more than US20,000. Obviously, if you want to retire in Thailand and not working, you will need money more than this to support yourself for many years. Our questions are:

1. Does this immigration restriction applies to retirees coming to stay in Thailand?

2. If he has opened a saving account in a Thai bank already, can he T/T a large sum from US to this account in Thailand?

3. Can he brings in a bank draft of a large sum and fly to Thailand  and deposit into this account?

4. Are the moves in No. 2 and 3 against this immigration monetary restriction?

5. What is the minimum amount of money above which you have to declare, whatever method you bring it into Thailand.In the case of T/T, how can he declare the money which is already wired into his account?

Thanks.

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Posted (edited)

I think you will see loads of people here, that brings a lot more money than that into Thailand, for purpose of building or buying houses... Have not heard about any restrictions.

 

But you will soon hear from more knowledgeable people..

 

Glegolo

Edited by glegolo

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No limits in. Difficulties out. Talking about wiring in money. Bags of cash is another thing.

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1.  Yes, the restriction applies to everyone including retirees. However, I believe the restriction is that one must declare the amount of cash you are carrying with you if it exceeds the equivalent of 20,000 USD.  As far as I know there is no restriction on the amount as long as it is properly declared.

2.  Yes.  This is the most common way of bringing in large amounts of money.  If you transfer over $50,000 (equivalent) a Foreign Exchange Transaction form or similar will be issued by the Thai bank involved in the transfer.  If you are bringing the money into Thailand for the purpose of buying property you should get your Thai bank to document the transactions (using an FET form or equivalent letter) so that your purchase will be accepted at the Thai Land Office (this is a mandatory requirement) and as an aid to you if and when you decide to repatriate that money back to the US.  Bangkok Bank has a particularly favorable mechanism to accomplish the transfer from the US that you should investigate, but almost any bank would be able to do that transfer (subject to fees and an exchange rate).

3.  Yes, but it can take a long time (several weeks) for the funds to become available as most Thai banks will wait until the check clears and funds are actually received from the US bank before allowing you to access the funds.

4. No.

5. You must declare if you carry $20,000 USD or more in cash with you into Thailand.  You must declare (the Thai bank will do this for you via FET form or similar) if you transfer $50,000 USD into Thailand.  As pointed out in 3) you may want to have your bank document large transfers if you are buying property in Thailand as it is required to register that purchase at the Land Office and will be necessary to easily repatriate that money if you later wish to do so.  You can ask your bank to issue you a letter documenting the transfer of money from the US to Thailand after the transfer takes place.  You should try to do this as soon as possible after the transfer.  I'm not sure if there is a period of time after which this sort of documentation will no longer be issued by your bank.

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The customs declaration relates only to cash, anything over USD 20k must be declared - electronic bank transfers can be for any amount and do not need to be declared.

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Your understanding that "immigration laws allow a person to bring INTO Thailand not more than US20,000" is wrong. Neither immigration nor any other government agency impose any limit.

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Your money is always welcome here.


Learn the difference between "reporting anything over the limit" and "limited to". Over the limit - pay the man.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-N910A using Tapatalk

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There is no limit to the amount of foreign exchange that can be brought into Thailand.

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Since you say your "friend" is an American, I would add some comments about the USA laws about having to declare more than $10,000 on a US airline.  Sounds simple enough, but from the few accounts I have heard, it can be challenging to do at a US airport.  As I recall, you have to present the form to some TSA office on the day of travel, which may or may not be easy as you have bags, ticketing and check in to do etc.  And I bet the TSA people will not be very familiar with the process and they will have to call some manager, make a lot of calls, ask a lot of questions, etc.  Just suggesting you should check on just how you declare the over 10K on the US flight with the airport you are flying out of.  And I am not even throwing in the nuances of overly TSA officials, and the problems they could present to you, the grilling or scrutiny you might get, etc.

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5 hours ago, Maestro said:

There is no limit to the amount of foreign exchange that can be brought into Thailand.

But cash over USD 20K must be reported to Customs on entry.

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In 2011 I brought in a Cashier's Bank check for about 20,000 U.S. dollars and deposited it in my  Thai bank account.

Took about 2 months to clear my U.S. bank account and show up in my Thai  bank account.

That was the funds for my Thai retirement visa extension.

So yes, it can be done legally.

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I deposit my US tax refund check into my Thai bank account each year and that takes about one month to clear and the bank charge is about 1% of the check value. BUT be aware that some banks in Thailand will not handle ANY financial instruments from the US, cashiers checks or bankers drafts, UOB (Thailand) for example has instructed all of their branches to not have any contact whatsoever with US based banks, US issued financial instruments or the US governement - other banks in Thailand are more relaxed about those things but I don't know the full list of who is and who isn't hence some caution is needed.

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3 hours ago, gk10002000 said:

Since you say your "friend" is an American, I would add some comments about the USA laws about having to declare more than $10,000 on a US airline.  Sounds simple enough, but from the few accounts I have heard, it can be challenging to do at a US airport.  As I recall, you have to present the form to some TSA office on the day of travel, which may or may not be easy as you have bags, ticketing and check in to do etc.  And I bet the TSA people will not be very familiar with the process and they will have to call some manager, make a lot of calls, ask a lot of questions, etc.  Just suggesting you should check on just how you declare the over 10K on the US flight with the airport you are flying out of.  And I am not even throwing in the nuances of overly TSA officials, and the problems they could present to you, the grilling or scrutiny you might get, etc.

This is the FinCEN 105 Form you have to fill out if you wish to leave the US carrying $10,000 or more in cash:

https://www.fincen.gov/sites/default/files/shared/fin105_cmir.pdf

You have to find the proper person/office to give your completed FinCEN 105 Form to at your US departure airport.  That's not as straightforward as it may sound.  While incoming passengers have easy contact with US Customs and Border Protection officers the same is not necessarily true with departing passengers.  You should contact your departure airport and ask specifically where you need to turn in your FinCEN 105 form.  I guess you could also try contacting the US Customs and Border Protection agency to find out the same information.  My guess is that you're going to get a lot of "I don't know" type responses.  Good luck!

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BANGKOK 18 October 2017 23:38
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