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Guidebook Doing Business and Investment in Thailand 2019


A couple must go to the local registration office called Amphur (outside Bangkok) or Khet (in Bangkok).

Divorce and Child Custody

Divorce and Child Custody

There are two type of divorce namely: uncontested divorce and contested divorce.


There are two type of divorce namely: uncontested divorce and contested divorce.

  1. An uncontested divorce.
    An uncontested divorce is a case that both spouses mutually agree to end their marriage. This type of divorce is preferable as the process does not take long time and it can be conducted at any district office, an uncontested divorce takes effect from the time of registration.
    Required Documents are as follows;
    • Identification Cards from both parties.
    • Marriage Certification.
    • Bill of divorce.
    • Two witnesses with their Identification Cards are present for the registration.
  2. Contested Divorce
    A contested divorce is a case that one party of the marriage who requests to end the marriage has to file a case before the court with at least one legitimate ground – such as honoring another person as wife or husband, being guilty of misconduct, causing serious harm to the body or mind of the other, deserting the other, etc. Contested Divorce takes effect on and from the time when the judgment becomes final.
    Important grounds of action for divorce are as follows:
    • The husband and wife have given maintenance to or honored such other as his wife or his husband, or have committed adultery.
    • One spouse has caused serious harm or torture to the body or mind of the other, or has seriously insulted the other or his or her ascendants.
    • One spouse has deserted the other for more than one year.
    • One spouse has failed to give proper maintenance and support to the other, or committed acts seriously adverse to the relationship of husband and wife to such an extent that the other has been in excessive trouble where the condition, position and cohabitation as husband and wife are taking into consideration.

Note: The Legal process is complicated, so we strongly recommend you to have a lawyer.


Child Custody

Often, the issue of who will obtain child custody arises when spouses having children are divorcing.

  1. Parental power
    In case of an uncontested divorce, the spouses shall make an agreement writing for the exercise of parental power over each of the children. In the absence of such agreement or an agreement thereon cannot be reached, the matter shall be decided by the Court.

    In case of contested Divorce, the Court trying the divorce case shall also order that the parental power over each of the children belongs to any party. If, in such trial, it is deemed proper to deprive that spouse of the parental power, the Court may give an order depriving that spouse of the same and appointing a third person as a guardian, by taking into consideration the happiness and interest of the child.
  2. Child Support
    In case of an uncontested divorce, an arrangement shall be made and contained in the agreement of divorce as to who, both of the spouses or either spouse, will contribute to the maintenance of the children and how much is the contribution.

    In case of contested Divorce by judgment of the Court or in case the agreement of divorce contains no provisions concerning the maintenance of the children, the Court shall determine it.