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You can find here our legal articles published by the magazins L'Indicateur and InThailandia translated into English.
Some of the articles are also reported underneath the pages related to the various legal subjects.
We recommend our readers to look for the subject of interest and to read the articles throughly in order to better understanding the laws and the traditions governing the Kingdom of Thailand. Reading our articles may as well be a good help to understand the best procedures that your case requires.
To read our article in English
click on the titles below
L'Indicateur Thailande Magazine
In Thailandia Magazine
You can find most of our articles
in French and in Italian
browsing the magazines
L'Indicateur and In Thailandia
The Thai Criminal System
Discover the differences between the Thai and the westerns Criminal systems. How to defend and protect yourself and how to choose the best criminal lawyer.
The Thai Criminal Law System - Part two and three
Part 2 & 3
How to Obtain a Just Compensation for Damages
What is the best and fastest way to get a just compensation? How should we proceed.
Investing for your Thai Family
investing in Thailand. Discover how to protect yourself and your loved ones
Divorcing in Thailand
Divorcing in Thailand can be quick and easy or a never-ending "War of the Roses"
Clara Pacta Amicitia Longa
All you need to know before marrying in Thailand
To live and die in Thailand
Inheritance Law. What you need to know.
Real Estate law - Real estate market in Pattaya
His Majesty the Contract
All you need to know before signing a contract
Her Highness the Company Ltd., ...a Virtual Wife
What you need to know before establishing a new company
Her Grace the Property and His Excellence the Chanot
How to safely acquire a real estate property in Thailand
Promises and Sighs
Dowry and Berothal
What you need to know about the tradition of the Price of the Bribe and how marital dowry and betrothal (promise of marriage) are regulated by the law in Thailand
The Mediation in the Thai Law
The Importance of Wisdom and Tolerance in the Thai Law System and in the Thai Society
The ineluctable law of a smile... Sous le pavés la plage
We all know that "panta rhei", everything flows. Nevertheless the changes that are taking place nowadays in Thailand are absolutely precedent-less. Even though some of them were somehow expected, nobody could imagine that they might happen so suddenly, "out of the blue", as they would say in english!
The new trend has broadcasted one simple, clear message: law shall be respected...even in Thailand.
In our earlier articles, we have analyzed some aspects of this "new trend", but changes are happening so fast that some of them are already obsolete even while we are writing.
For example, a new tax on inheritance will be very likely soon approved, visa rules, especially in regard of foreigners overstaying, have radically changed. There are rumors of new adjustments coming soon. The government also decided to relentlessly fight corruption at any level. Many police officers have been reshuffled and reassigned, cameras will be monitored to catch people trying to bribe. Companies with foreign national share holders or directors are in many cases under severe, accurate scrutiny in order to unmask "nominees" and "shell-companies".
The notorious "Computer Criminal Act" has been enforced as never before and even writing a slandererousoffense on a social network including FB and Line is considered a serious crime, to not mention sending pornographic pictures to a third party.
We are literally living in a sort of bureaucratic, bloodless "French-May" : ce n'est que un début...Thai style, of course.
Among all this it is very important to keep three things well in mind:
1. Thailand is no longer the country of twenty years ago, when people could drive cars without a proper license risking a hundred baht fine or drink and drive without serious consequences. Now, if you drink you had better not drive for you can get incarcerated till you pay the fine and, if caught a second time within two years from the first offense, immediately deported and blacklisted...Just to make a couple of banal examples.
2. Bribing public officers won'tbuy you out in most circumstances and it could, on the contrary, be a ticket to jail or bigger fines.
3. There is one thing that hasn't changed and will never change: Shouting while claiming your right will, in most cases, take you to hell. And this is a point I very much want to emphasize here. It took it me many years to understand it. Thai people are usually and historically good hearted and tolerant, but they are also a proud people. If you have Thai friends or a Thai partner you certainly know it. They hate arrogance, especially if coming from foreigners. Speaking in a loud voice in a Court of Justice for instance, can be considered contempt of Court. Speaking loudly and harshly in no circumstance will help you, nor make you better "listened to", it will only cause hostility and make your counterpart totally deaf. No matter who she or he is: an officer, a wife, a worker. You can be sure that you will obtain the same negative reaction with no advantage for yourself and even if you are right you will be deemed deadly wrong.
On the contrary, in any possible circumstances, speaking out your reasons firmly, but with courtesy and moderation will do miracles. In an old article we have explained the enormous influence of the tradition on the Thai society sometimes in derogation of written laws. Today, as Court interpreter and law-expert, let me tell you: even in worse cases keep calm, control your tone, and remember: "Kao meung ta liao, tong liao ta tam"...if you enter the town of the cross-eyed, you'd better cross your eyes! Try with a smile.
Finding a Job in Thailand
In the last number we have analyzed the opportunities, the difficulties and the advantages for both, young western nationals looking for a job and retired people, to start a new life in Thailand.
Today we will "talk" about a third kind of people who, in this time of profound crisis are, in a constantly growing number, seriously considering the opportunity to start a business or to invest capitals in order to live here.
As we all possibly know, the new regulations on visas have radically changed the general scenario and obtain a residence permit is not as easy as in the past. If you are younger then fifty, not married and with no children you will have only two opportunities to live permanently in Thailand: studying (for real and full time!) or working with a proper work permit.
To obtain a work permit a foreigner must be employed by a company with at least two million of nominal capital and four thai workers for any foreigner employed.
A foreign national can be the director of a thai company, but can own only 49% of the shares. For the moment at least. Allegedly, by the end of the year, in compliance with the new rules introduced by the "Asian Market", foreign nationals will be entitled to own up to 70% of a Thai company.
In the very recent past the "escamotage" for most of the small investors and entrepreneurs to keep full control of a thai company, fooling the law, has been to form a new company using thai partners as mere nominees.
Today, such a stratagem, appears for what it is: illegal and, to say the least, very dangerous. The DSI (Department of Special Investigation), pressed by the government, has started random, accurate investigations to find out and punish transgressors of the "principal of the law" which is clear and simple: a foreign national can not own more then 49% of a Thai company. The remaining 51% share holders (minimum two physical persons) must demonstrate, where inquired, to have the real economic capacity necessary for the initial investment and to really participate to company's dividends as gains, losses etc.
I know that for many people who have been living here for a long time, these news look incredible or surprising, but they are absolutely true.
Furthermore a "property tax", so often rejected by precedent governments, will be soon introduced as a tax on inheritance. Things are definitely changing in Thailand.
This said, Thailand still offers several opportunities to invest and obtain a good return. Real estate, if well pondered, is an example of high return investment.
The internationalization of the country due to the growing tourism towards Europe and The rest of the world is changing the restaurant-industry and Thais are more and more keen of western gourmet as, in general, of western products.
Obviously it is common sense before investing in a foreign country to get accomplished with it's law, regulations and language.
I would like to remind to all potential investors that most of western countries have well organized Chambers of Commerce which will be happy to inform and assist on the very many different aspects of the Thai business world. The Franco-thai Chamber (http://www.francothaicc.com) prime purpose is exactly to promote business and collaboration between French and Thai nationals, both privates or companies. It organizes business luncheons, meetings, seminars, conferences, often in collaboration with other countries chambers.
For all foreigners regularly married or who have legally recognized a minor child, thinks are easier. Regardless one's age a foreign national married to a Thai can obtain a resident permit simply showing 400.000 baht in his bank account or even get one demonstrating the spouse/husband income.
The risk to be blacklisted for petty crimes, which is one of the biggest hindrances refraining many foreigners from investing in Thailand, will be minimized in presence of children.
Today a foreign national married to a Thai woman (it is different for a woman married to a Thai man) and with children, still has no the right to work without a proper work permit, but he can easily obtaining him having his wife as a "real" partner-shares holder in a company.
Finally I would like to underline as, all we have said today, might be totally different soon. As stated, Thailand and all Asia, are on the verge of epochal changes.
A very good sign coming from the government is that, for the first time, it expressly asked all foreign Chambers of Commerce to provide opinions and inputs in order to promote, better and develop international business collaboration. I, as Chairman of the Thai-Italian Chamber of Commerce, Eastern Seaboard Committee, had personally the possibility to express in writing my humble opinion on the very same issues above mentioned.
In conclusion, without any false moralism, let me say that in my opinion Thailand is still a good very good place to live and invest your legit savings, provided you do respect the laws and you use the appropriate consultants as Chambers of commerce or accredited law advisers.
If you are looking for a place where it is easy to evade tax or launder illicit money...then I'm afraid Thailand is not for you.
Criminal case information
Some questions and answers about Thai law
Repossession in Thailand
Visa for Thai to travel abroad