If you are married to a Thai citizen then you need to ensure that you have made all the needed arrangements to have you assets in Thailand protected. The one method of doing this is a prenuptial agreement. Other options also exist such as a usufruct over a property as well as registering a Thai company to hold you assets. Superficies or a usufruct also has the ability to protect your assets or access to them. We have explained all of them on this website.
If you have substantial assets or have a profession that allows you to make large amounts of money then you would be best served speaking to a family lawyer in Thailand like GAM Legal Alliance about your options in Thailand as a foreigner. Remember the prenuptial agreement and all other legal instruments are like having a spare wheel in your car. It’s best to have one than not have one and need it later.
Thai Marriage Registration
Once you have signed your prenuptial agreement or registered all other legal documents you need to register you marriage in Thailand. Unlike the West Thailand does not require a priest or a monk to provide a letter for the marriage. In Thailand it’s merely an issue of registration of the marriage. This registration process starts at your embassy in Bangkok. Depending on your nationality this can take anywhere from 1 week to a month. You need to complete a form at your embassy in Bangkok for a ‘letter of no impediment’ which says that you are single and able to marry. If you have been divorced you will need a copy of the divorce decree or a death certificate if you spouse has passed on. If you are from a Middle Eastern country some embassies require you to have a letter to prove that you are getting married as a Muslim to another Muslim. See Muslim marriages in Thailand for more details.
Once you have the “letter of no impediment” you have to take this letter from the Embassy to the Thai Department of Foreign Affairs. The Department has to verify that the letter is authentic before it can be used. The Embassy normally takes 2-3 days to have the letter issued however some take much longer. The Department of Foreign Affairs takes 4-5 hours to verify this letter as authentic and they stamp the letter as authentic.
Once you have your letter you need to take your documents such as your no impediment letter as well as your divorce decree, death certificate of your spouse all translated and verified to the local District Office in Thailand. There are many of them and you also need to ensure that you have your pre-nuptial agreement with you which has already been signed and authenticated before the marriage registration. It is best to use an attorney for this process if you have a prenuptial agreement as it can be a problem later if it was not done in the correct order.
The local Amphur Office or District Office will issue you with a marriage certificate. There are two marriage certificates. There is a fancy certificate and a multipage certificate. These you can use to extend your marriage visa in Thailand for 12 months or use it to apply for a US Visa or UK visa or an Australian Spouse Visa for your Thai wife.