Filing of Divorce in Thailand

Divorce in Thailand is a common way for couples to end their marriage. If both husband and wife agree to divorce then this is known as a Mutual Consent Divorce or an Uncontested Divorce.

This type of divorce is handled at the district office (Khet or Amphur) and requires both spouses to be present physically. It is based on Article 1516 of the Civil and Commercial Code.

Uncontested Divorce

Unlike in many countries where divorces are often contested and complicated, in Thailand a couple may opt to have an administrative divorce. This is also known as a divorce by mutual consent and is generally quicker, cheaper and easier to obtain than a court judgment divorce.

During this procedure the husband and wife will need to personally appear before the district officer (amphur, amphoe or khet) where they registered their marriage to apply for the divorce. They cannot be represented by a family member, lawyer or counsel and must answer questions to ensure that their decision to end the marriage is based on mutual agreement.

Both parties will need to be willing to compromise on issues such as the division of assets, property and debts, visitation rights, child custody and alimony. It is recommended that both parties seek legal advice to ensure that their interests are fully protected and that a comprehensive and fair divorce agreement is drafted.

In most cases, couples seeking an uncontested divorce will need to submit a prenuptial agreement as part of their documents in order to be eligible for this type of Thai divorce. The prenuptial agreement will need to be reviewed to ensure that it is valid and enforceable under Thai law.

The couple will then be required to submit additional documents in order to have their marriage officially dissolved. This includes submitting a divorce certificate and a signed copy of the divorce agreement. Once all of the documents have been submitted, the divorce will be finalized and a divorce certificate will be issued by the local district office. In the event that the spouses do not agree on the terms of the divorce they can choose to go through a contested process which will involve a court hearing and require more extensive documentation. This will normally be the case when there are disagreements about property, children or alimony.

Mutual Consent Divorce

Divorce is always a hard choice for a married couple but when it’s needed, it should be done in the most professional and smooth way. For that it is important to have proper knowledge of the whole process in Thailand and understand it from the beginning. The first thing to consider is that if you are married in Thailand and the marriage is registered in Thailand it can be dissolved through an administrative divorce procedure (section 1514 of the Civil and Commercial Code).

This method does not require going to court but there are some requirements such as both spouses must attend the district office personally, no lawyer can act on their behalf and they also must agree on all potential issues like distribution of property and spousal maintenance. For that reason, we advise you to draw up a written divorce settlement agreement with your lawyer before heading for the district office.

For a contested divorce you will have to go through the courts which can be a lengthy and expensive process but it is the only way if you are not able to reach an agreement with your spouse on all the issues such as division of property, custody of children and alimony. The courts will make a ruling on these matters based on Thai law and your individual circumstances.

You can file a contested divorce on any of 11 grounds provided under the Thai laws, however if you have a prenuptial agreement this will be assessed by the court to see if it is valid and enforceable. If the court finds that it is then this will be taken into account in the division of your property. You will have to provide proof of this before the divorce is finalised by a judge. Also, you will have to provide a copy of your passport and visas as well as all documents that were used for the marriage registration.

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