Divorce Law in Thailand
If you are getting divorced in Thailand then this can only be carried out if the marriage was registered under Thai law through any of the district offices in Thailand or registered with the Thai embassy or consulate if the marriage with a Thai national was done overseas. Always speak to a Thai divorce lawyer in Thailand about getting divorced before you start the process.
Types of Divorce in Thailand
Divorce by mutual consent Or Uncontested Divorce – If both parties agree to divorce they can bring themselves to the district office where they got married to express their intent to dissolve the marriage. The registrar will formalize the divorce by issuing a divorce certificate with a settlement agreement attached as to how properties, children and spouse maintenance be handled by the divorcing parties.
The couple can hire a lawyer to draft a divorce agreement if needed to cover all clauses concerning management of assets and properties acquired during marriage, child support and custody, alimony and among other things.
Note: Some countries don’t accept this type of divorce so although you had a divorce by mutual consent, you are still required to obtain a court order for your divorce before your country or embassy acknowledges your divorce.
Divorce by Court Judgment Or Contested Divorce – if one of the parties refuse to get divorce, the other party can file a divorce against him/her provided that he/she has a ground for divorce. In Thai law, the following are grounds for divorce.
- When either spouse has taken another man or woman other than the legal spouse;
- Either husband or wife is guilty of misconduct;
- Either husband or wife abused or seriously insulted the other person;
- Either one spouse deserted the other spouse for more than one year;
- Either one spouse has been adjudged to have disappeared;
- Either one spouse failed to give proper maintenance and support to the other;
- Either one spouse has been insane for more than three consecutive years;
- Either one spouse is suffering from a communicable and dangerous disease;
- Either one spouse has a physical disadvantage.
Court order for the divorce can take up to 6 months to get issued so this route is not only costlier but also takes time.
Child Custody – if the child is still a minor, the custody is normally awarded to the mother unless she is incapacitated to perform her parental duties owing to physical or mental problems. Both parents are responsible for child support. The court will decide how much money that each party should contribute per month to support the welfare and education of the child/children.
Division of Property – Only properties acquired during marriage will be subject to 50-50 split. These are considered conjugal properties. Meanwhile, properties obtained before marriage are personal properties of each spouse and will remain theirs in the event of divorce.
Problem on division of assets and properties along with child maintenance and alimony during divorce can be avoided through a well drafted Thai Prenuptial Agreement to be registered during the Marriage Registration.
Contact a Thai law firm today for your Thai divorce questions!