Relocate Your Business to Thailand Through Shelter
Whether you’re an entrepreneur, employer, or work as a remote employee, relocating your team and/or yourself to Thailand presents a unique opportunity for geoarbitrage. In a recent poll, Thailand ranked as “a firm favorite for a post-pandemic influx of nomadic workers” thanks to its high-speed internet, affordable living costs, and low effective tax rate. (Bangkok Post)
In general, there are two methods for moving your business to Thailand:
1. Do it yourself (DIY). In order to create a Thai company, or local subsidiary, you will need to engage a variety of legal advisors, third-party vendors services, and eventually make a substantial investment in time and money. It can take up to 6 months for you to be able to pay your employees.
2. Partner with an Employer of Record (EOR). Another option is to have your overseas employment outsourced (either as an employer or an employee) to an EOR service such as Shelter. An EOR is a company that employs you and your team in accordance with local labor laws. It takes care of tax, payroll, social security and immigration issues. The EOR takes care of all administrative and compliance duties for you, while your employees continue to work for you. This drastically reduces the cost and time involved in deploying employees overseas.
EOR v. DIY
Shelter’s EOR service makes it easy to relocate your business to Thailand. Local experts will handle all aspects of the setup (title approval, employment contract, visa and work permit application) as well as ongoing administrative procedures (immigration and payroll, tax, insurance, social security, etc.).
With an EOR, you and/or your employees can be visa-ready to enter Thailand in as little as a few weeks.
By contrast, the DIY path is time-consuming and expensive. You will need to work closely with lawyers to incorporate a local business, establish a physical office space, and locate local vendors that can provide payroll and immigration services similar to an EOR.
Even if your company has dedicated HR and legal departments, you still run the risk of non-compliance if you lack specific knowledge in key areas of Thai law.
On the other hand, an EOR service like Shelter helps you save money and ensures you comply with local laws. Our team is well-versed in Thailand’s employment law, finance and administrative support. We can be your single point of contact when you need help with overseas employment.
Our team has already set up the necessary departments and processes so that your employees can start working in Thailand in less time than a month.
What Are the Benefits of the EOR Solution?
Low Effective Tax Rate
Relocating to Thailand for work remotely has many benefits, including a low effective tax rate. Your employees will not only save money by leveraging the currency differences between Thailand and Western countries, but they will also receive a larger portion of their paychecks after taxes than if they had earned in their home country. Our payroll services are legal and contribute to the Thai system, so you can be sure that your employees (and your company) will benefit from them.
No hassle compliance
Thailand’s labor laws are complicated and ever-changing, and the Kingdom is known for being extremely strict about documentation. It is important to make sure that your company follows all the proper bureaucratic procedures. It is crucial, especially for foreigners who do business in Thailand, to seek the advice of experts who can help you navigate through the complex Thai legal system.
A EOR service is better than hiring a compliance officer that is trained in Thai labor law. You can avoid unexpected setbacks or pitfalls when expanding your business operations to a country with unfamiliar bureaucratic procedures.
Drafting of Employment Agreements
Employers must ensure that all applicable statutory rights and obligations are covered in the contracts they sign with employees to comply with Thai labor law. Employer contracts in Thailand must always include the salary and compensation amounts in Thai Baht, (THB), rather than in a foreign currency.
Shelter Global is an expert in drafting such agreements for your benefit and those of your employees. We will guide you through all steps from contract signing, to administrative onboarding, and termination. You only need to review the agreements and sign them.
Sponsorship of Visa and Work Permit
Shelter Global can sponsor Thai Business Visas or Digital Work Permits on your behalf and/or those of your employees, as the Employer in Record. Like Thai labor law, Thai immigration law is notoriously complicated and constantly changing. As part of your package service, it is important to hire a trusted expert to help you with visa and work permit issues.
Shelter can help you with all aspects of the process. This includes title approval, document collection, and visa application. The best part is that Shelter doesn’t require you to be present physically at Immigration for the quarterly notifications. You can also extend your visa or work permit every year without ever leaving the country.
Payroll can be outsourced easily with an Employer of Record. We can help you with every aspect of payroll, from setting up a Thai bank account for employees to filing taxes and social security deductions.
Your company is invoiced on the 21st each month. We then process the salaries in Thai Baht the third month. We can provide additional documentation to your company, such as income tax and withholding tax, for their corporate tax filings in their home country.
Social Security & Healthcare
Three social systems provide health and other benefits in Thailand. These are civil welfare for government workers and social security for private employees (both Thai and foreign) and universal healthcare for all Thai citizens.
An Employer of Record will pay your monthly social insurance payments and issue you a card. A local hospital will be assigned to you so that you can get treatment at no cost. We also offer international healthcare plans that provide additional benefits, access to more hospitals, and more medical services.
You may not have the resources or budget to open an office or hire HR staff to handle your administrative tasks if you’re a startup or new company. An EOR service can be a cost-effective option in this situation. Shelter is an EOR that eliminates the need to establish a local corporation, meet capital requirements and consult employment and immigration specialists. It also makes it easy to hire payroll and other administrative support services and file social security and corporate tax paperwork. This can save you up to six figures per year.
Who Is It For?
An EOR service like Shelter is perfect for those currently working as digital business owners or entrepreneurs, startups in the technology space, remote employees of overseas companies, and digital freelancers. You can save a lot by “offshoring” your operations to tech-friendly Thailand.
Entrepreneurs and Employers
Shelter Global is a specialist in moving teams. We can help you get your ideas and business off the ground. Shelter Global can provide office space in shared or individual offices at great locations that will suit your needs. We can also help you find new talent, depending on your needs. You may be able to save depending on your country’s tax laws on employee contributions, healthcare, retirement plans, and other services.
Shelter Global makes it easy to relocate to Thailand if you are already employed by a company. It may be the best decision you even make. This arrangement may offer a number of benefits depending on the income tax and social welfare requirements in your home country. With the low cost of living here, you will be able to reap the benefits of geoarbitrage.
Digital Nomads and Freelancers
You can easily relocate your business to Thailand as a freelancer who is not dependent on where you live. While you continue to work on your current projects, we’ll hire you. Shelter’s simple-to-use billing software allows you to invoice clients and keep track of your progress with confidence. You can continue to be completely free with clients you choose, and Shelter’s network of professionals will help you discover new opportunities.
What Are the Costs?
The cost of onboarding with Shelter varies depending on a number of factors, but in general there are three fees involved:
- Security deposit, to be returned on completion of contract: 2,000 USD
- Visa and Work Permit fees (paid at the Thai Embassy or Consulate where the visa application is submitted, and at Immigration in Chiang Mai or Bangkok when obtaining your work permit): 155-275 USD
- Shelter service fee, a flat fee charged per employee per month: 550 USD
- Tax and Social Security payments (starting at 30 USD per month)
How Do I Get Started?
If you’ve made up your mind to relocate your business to Thailand—or if you’re on the fence and want to ask some questions—fill out a Shelter contact form to get the ball rolling.
The general requirements for employees are as follows:
- Are at least 22 years old
- Have either one of the following:
- An IT-related university degree, plus 2 years of relevant work experience
- Any type of university/college/school diploma or certificate, plus 5 years of relevant work experience
- Work in software development, blockchain, design, marketing, business development, ecommerce, or other online, tech/digital-related activity