If you wish to terminate your marriage in Thailand, you need to show that you have a legal reason to do so. The court will grant a divorce, provided you can show a reason, or you and your spouse mutually agree to end the marriage. The district office, or the Amphur, can terminate a marriage if both parties mutually consent to the divorce.
When a Divorce May Be Filed
A divorce may be filed if the following occurs
- One of the parties in the divorce case has committed adultery.
- One spouse behaves in a way that shames the other spouse, which, in turn, causes that person to be disliked or get hurt.
- One of the spouses harms the body or thinking of the other spouse, or severely insults his or her ascendants.
- One of the spouses has not resided with the other party for more than a year.
- One of the parties has been incarcerated for more than a year for a crime that the other spouse did not know about. In turn, the innocent spouse experienced injury or problems, as a result.
- Each spouse has elected to live apart from the other, or have been ordered by the court to live separately for over three years.
- One of the parties has not returned to his or her home for over three years, and his or her whereabouts are unknown. It is not known if he or she has died, or is alive.
- One of the parties to the marriage did not provide the needed maintenance and support to the other party or has committed acts that caused his or her spouse to have major problems.
- One of the parties is considered mentally incompetent and has had this condition for over three years. Because the condition cannot be cured, it is difficult for the other spouse to remain in the marriage.
- One of the spouses has broken any ties with respect to good behavior.
- One of the parties is suffering from an incurable condition, which causes the other spouse to be at risk of getting harmed or injured.
- One spouse has a physical disability that makes living together in a marriage impractical.
In divorce proceedings in Thailand, both Thai residents and foreigners are considered equally. Divorces may be contested or unconsented. If both parties mutually consent to the termination of marriage, the divorce is uncontested.
Contested Divorce in Thailand
If both parties in a divorce case cannot mutually consent to the divorce and have problems with property distribution or other issues, the proceeding often ends up in court. If you cannot resolve your differences, you must be willing to make a court appearance.
Uncontested Divorce in Thailand
If you wish to simply end your marriage, you do not have to show the reason for ending the marriage, as you both wish to terminate the union. If you are not from Thailand but wish to divorce your Thai husband or wife, you need to contact your country’s embassy first. The embassy officials can tell you if you can divorce your husband or wife through a district office in Thailand.
An uncontested divorce, or a marriage termination that ends by mutual consent, should always be in writing. You will need to get the signatures of two witnesses. You can facilitate the process in a legal setting, such as a law firm, or at a district office. Read the terms carefully before you sign the agreement and it becomes certified. Have the agreement translated if one of you is from a different country.
Make Note of the Following – If the divorce agreement features two witness signatures but is not registered in a district office or with the Amphur, it will be considered null and void.
If you are from the US or a western country, make sure you bring your passport, translated in the Thai language.
The two witnesses you use should be at least 20 years of age and have been deemed mentally competent. Neither party should have a history of bankruptcy.
What the Divorce Contract Should Include
When you finally sign the agreement, make sure it contains the following provisions:
- How the child custody will be handled, if you have children;
- How the marital assets and property will be divided; and
- How any financial decisions will be made that relate directly to the divorce, such as alimony or child support payments.
As you can see, this type of document must be carefully reviewed before it is signed. Also, you must make sure that your witnesses qualify for the role. Check and make sure that either witness has not had any problems with debt, and that they have not had to file bankruptcy. Taking these measures can make any uncontested divorce proceedings easier to manage and simpler to facilitate.
Use the guidance of a divorce attorney to help you with the process. Make sure he or she has the knowledge and experience to handle any problems that may emerge along the way.
If you need legal advice or assistance from a qualified lawyer or a lawyer to represent you in a court hearing, please contact us today.