A marriage in Thailand is only valid under Thai law if it is registered. This can be done at any district office (also known as an amphur or khet).
This is the first step in getting married in Thailand. The Affirmation of Freedom to Marry must be countersigned by an official from your Embassy.
1. Affirmation of Freedom to Marry
The Affirmation of Freedom to Marry is the first step in getting married in Thailand. This document can be obtained from your embassy in Bangkok or from one that will translate it for you.
Once you have this you will need to go to any district office (amphur) in person with a translator and two witnesses. This office is like a town hall or registry and it is where you get legally married under Thai law.
The affidavit must be dated in the month that you are intending to register your marriage in Thailand. This is to reduce the chance of an unforeseen event such as a public holiday or computer problems that might prevent you from being able to register.
2. Translation of the Affirmation
Obtaining the affirmation is one of the most important first steps for marriage registration in Thailand. This is a document from your home country that attests to the fact that you are free to marry under Thai law.
Once you have this document, you will need it translated into Thai (your embassy does not do this for you) by a reputable translation office. It will also need to be legally certified by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
This is a very important step in the process, and it will be well worth taking the time to have your documents properly translated and legalized before you come to Thailand.
3. Copy of the Affirmation
Depending on the Embassy and their procedures, a letter of affirmation can be valid for only a specific month. This is why a couple should obtain this document as soon as possible.
A copy of the Affirmation can be taken to the District Registrar together with copies of both passports for registration. The registrar will then issue a Thai marriage certificate in accordance with Thailand law.
This is a very important document and should be kept in a safe place. If a Briton or their partner have been married previously, it will be necessary to bring a certified copy of the divorce decree or death certificate of previous spouse.
4. Copy of the Birth Certificate
Birth certificates are the first official recognition of a person’s identity and are an essential document for all legal proceedings. They state a person’s name, date of birth, and place of birth and list the parents’ names and information. They are typically filed in the civil registry within 15 days of birth, and are usually signed or stamped by a government official.
Lack of birth registration can reinforce existing gender gaps in areas like education, with girls without birth certificates being more likely to drop out of school and are more susceptible to child marriage. It is recommended that all couples get their birth certificates before getting married in Thailand.
5. Copy of the Death Certificate
A marriage in Thailand is more than just a religious ceremony or a moment of happiness; it also creates legal binding effects that are difficult to revoke by law. This is why it is very important for foreigners to consider their options carefully and ensure that they register their marriage properly.
For this, they must submit all required documents to their local district office (also known as ‘amphur’ or ‘khet’ in Thai) and make sure that they follow the procedure laid down by Thai law. Once this is done, they should have their documents translated and brought to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for legalization.
6. Copy of the Marriage Certificate
A Marriage Certificate is more than just a document, it signifies the commitment of two souls to one another. The acquisition of this important document requires meticulous adherence to prescribed timelines, ensuring that all required documents are submitted in order to avoid any unnecessary delays.
Couples who wish to marry in Thailand should be aware that the process can take up to 4 or 5 days depending on the country of origin. Acclime can help with the registration process by taking care of the necessary paperwork and translations. Once the embassy documents are obtained they need to be legalized at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Bangkok.