Filing of Divorce in Thailand

Filing of Divorce in Thailand can be a complicated process. It will take considerable time, money and physical court appearances if the divorce is contested.

For couples who mutually agree to end their marriage in Thailand, they may register an administrative divorce at the district office where their marriage is registered. However, they both need to appear in person to sign for the registration.

Uncontested Divorce

Uncontested divorce is the fastest, cheapest and most common way to end a marriage in Thailand. A couple must agree to sever their marital relationship and present themselves at the local registrar (known as an amphur, amphoe or khet) where they registered their marriage to apply for an administrative divorce. Both parties have to personally appear before the registrar and answer questions as to their mutual decision to end their marriage, and the registrar has to make sure that both spouses have voluntarily and freely agreed to terminate their marriage and that they are not under any duress or coercion.

The spouse who files the divorce lawsuit is called the Plaintiff and together with a lawyer they have to identify the grounds upon which the divorce is filed. After determining the grounds and verifying the evidence, the pleading is filed with the local court. The registrar will examine the pleadings and when satisfied that the grounds for divorce have been established he or she will issue the divorce certificate. The registrar will then notify both spouses that they have been granted a divorce. In some cases, the registrar will ask both parties to sign a divorce agreement which is an official document that settles issues on the division of shared property and assets and any other marital issues that the couple would like to resolve.

Contested Divorce

A contested divorce in Thailand is a court-mandated procedure that allows a spouse to seek judicial intervention to put an end to their marriage, or to resolve other issues such as alimony, child custody and division of property. This type of divorce is often required when there are specific grounds for divorce, such as abuse or infidelity.

When couples file for a contested divorce, they are required to submit all evidence they have in support of their case including statements and witnesses. A judge will then preside over a hearing and make a final ruling on all issues associated with the marriage, including alimony and property sharing and custody of any children.

Generally, it is best to have a family law attorney on hand throughout the process of a contested divorce as they can help protect your rights and ensure that all aspects of your marriage are addressed and legally settled. This is particularly important if you are a foreign national and intend to use your Thai divorce decree for immigration purposes or in your home country or state.

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