The process of marriage registration in Thailand involves visiting the embassy or consulate for a marriage certificate. This can be done by a foreigner who is already in Thailand or by a couple who are both Thai citizens and wish to have their marriage registered in the country.
Firstly, the embassy or consulate will need to be contacted to make an appointment to complete the required form and receive any relevant documents from the applicant. Then, both parties must appear in person to sign the declaration at the embassy or consulate.
Both parties need to present their passports and two certified copies, along with a valid visa if needed. The embassy or consulate may also ask for your Thai ID card and any previous marriage certificates if you have had any.
Once all of these documents have been collected, it is then time to take the forms and the affidavit to the local district office to register your marriage. Both parties will need to bring two witnesses, who can be anyone over 18 years of age.
After the documents have been signed and the marriage registration has been completed, you will be given a certificate in Thai language. You can then have this translated into English, or your own language if you so desire.
The registrar at the district office will then register your marriage and issue you with a marriage certificate, which is valid for the rest of your life in Thailand. In most cases, this will only take a few days to complete.
If you are a non-Thai, you will need to obtain an Affirmation of Freedom to Marry from your embassy or consulate, which must be translated into Thai and certified by a Foreign Ministry translator. This will then need to be sent to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for legalisation, before you can have the marriage certificate sent back to your home country.
There are many different types of translation services in the country, so be sure to choose one that offers a “Thai Ministry of Foreign Affairs” certified stamp. You can find these near the main embassies in Bangkok.
Alternatively, you can complete the ‘Affirmation to Marry’ application at your embassy or consulate and then have this translated into Thai by a professional translator before heading to the ministry for approval. This can be a relatively expensive process, so be sure to discuss your needs with your chosen professional at this stage of the proceedings.
A divorce document or a court’s judgement is also required for those who have previously been married under a foreign law. These documents are normally only issued in a paper form and not electronically.
The embassy or consulate may ask for a copy of your marriage certificate and a corresponding divorce document before issuing the registration. You must also provide a certificate of the divorce or court’s judgment to show that you are legally divorced.
If you are a female, you will need to contact your local Amphur (district office) to change your name and last name, and to file for a new Identification Card. This can be done in a number of ways, but the most convenient way is to have it completed by an experienced lawyer.