There are two ways to end your marriage in Thailand, one is through mutual consent and the other is based on legal grounds. The process of getting a divorce in Thailand can be difficult and often accompanied by a lot of emotional turmoil. Taking proper legal advice from an experienced Thai family lawyer is essential to making the most informed decision possible and protecting your rights at every step.
The first way of ending your marriage is by mutual consent where the couple agrees to end the marriage, this can be done at the local District office or with the help of a lawyer. This type of divorce is usually more cost-effective than a litigated divorce.
Another option is to file for a contested divorce where there is a disagreement between the couple regarding finances, custody of children and marital property. This is a more complex and time-consuming process, but it can be completed if both parties are willing to pursue it.
A contested divorce requires both spouses to be present at the court for this step of filing the divorce suit. This step is most commonly done with the help of a lawyer.
Grounds for a Contested Divorce
There are many grounds that can be used as the basis of a contested divorce in Thailand including 3 years’ separation, a one-year desertion or adultery. The court may also consider a claim for alimony or child support.
Having a prenuptial agreement can be useful in this scenario. It sets the boundaries for each spouse, how they will share their assets and debts and how custody of children will be arranged in the event of a divorce.
If your marriage is registered in Thailand then the divorce process can be quite simple if both spouses agree to end the marriage and you file for an uncontested divorce. The procedure can be done in a single day at the local District Office and both parties must be present.
In some cases, a contested divorce may be necessary if your spouse refuses to sign the divorce documents. This will require the assistance of an experienced divorce lawyer in Thailand.
The courts in Thailand have jurisdiction over divorce proceedings if the marriage was registered in Thailand or if both spouses are Thai nationals. If your divorce is a contested divorce, you will need to file with the Family Court in Bangkok.
You will need to provide your lawyer with all the appropriate evidence that proves your grounds for a contested divorce and they will then prepare the pleading for you. This will need to be submitted to the court with a 2% court fee and court delivery fees if you are claiming claims on marital property.
It is vital to understand that a contested divorce can be very expensive and can take a long time to complete. This is why many couples prefer to pursue an uncontested divorce when possible.