Marriage Registration in Thailand

In order for couples to marry legally in Thailand they must meet both their home country’s laws and those of Thailand. The first step is to obtain an affirmation of freedom to marry from the embassy in Bangkok.

Once completed the document needs to be translated and authenticated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Bangkok (allow two days). Once complete you will then need to visit your local District Office known as an ‘amphur’ or ‘khet’.

Documents Required

There are some requirements that you will need to meet before your marriage can be registered in Thailand. These include a statement affirming that you are free to marry and that you have not been previously married. The statement should be issued by your embassy in Bangkok or your country’s consulate in Thailand. You will also need certified copies of divorce papers or death certificates if applicable. Once the embassy issues the documents, you will need to take them to a translation office and have them translated into Thai. They will also need to be legalized at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Once the documents are verified and legalized, you can file them at your local district office (also known as “Amphur” or “Khet”) to register your marriage in accordance with Thai law. The registrar will then issue you with a Thai language Marriage Certificate that is recognized internationally. You may also choose to have a ceremony at your local district office or any other site of your choice.

Age Requirements

Both parties must be at least 17 years old or meet the marriageable age of their home country. If they are under this age permission must be obtained from a court. They must not have direct blood relations in the ascendant or descendant line, siblings of full and half-blood, nor share a parent’s name (except adoptive parents).

Both couples should present their passports to the office where they file for their marriage registration. The registrar will check them for validity. The couple must also sign an affidavit attesting that they are single and free to marry according to Thai law. This affidavit must be translated by a certified translator and notarized before it can be filed.

Once the affidavit is approved by the registrar, the couple can complete their registration at the district office or minor district office, known as amphur in Bangkok and khet outside of the city. The registrar will register the marriage and issue a certificate of marriage in Thai only.

Filing at a District Office or Minor District Office

If you are a foreigner and intend to marry in Thailand, you need to ensure that the marriage is legally binding. The marriage can be legally valid only after it is registered. You should contact your local Embassy for the specific requirements to register the marriage. It is also advisable to enter into a prenuptial agreement, which will help protect your assets.

The first step is to obtain an Affidavit from your embassy (document #1). This document affirms that you are free to marry. You should take this along with a certified copy of your passport to the district office or Minor District Office in Thailand.

The document and the copies of passports will need to be translated and authenticated by the Legalization Division at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Bangkok. The process normally takes two days. You will then be able to file the translated documents at the Local Registrar’s Office, commonly known as “Amphur” or “Khet”. This will make your marriage legal and binding in accordance with Thai law.

Changing the Name of the Female

In Thailand, the possibility of changing the name of the female at marriage registration is a matter of choice and not mandatory. However, changing names after marriage can have practical implications that couples should consider.

The first step is to take your documents to a reputable translator and have them translated into Thai. You can find a translator by looking for ads online or in a local newspaper. Then you can take the translations to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to have them authenticated.

Once the documents are certified by the embassy and the translations are authenticated by the Foreign Ministry they are ready to be filed at a district office (Amphoe) or Khet. Each registry office has their own requirements above what is legally required so it is best to check with them before filing. For example, some may require a statement affirming freedom to marry and copies of any divorce decrees or death certificates.

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