Divorce in Thailand can be complicated if it involves children or property. As an Australian you are able to settle the issues then the divorce does not need to go to court as it will be done at the local Amphurs office. This is the same office where you registered the marriage. What you will need is a properly drafted divorce agreement between your wife and yourself.
The grounds for divorce are dictated by Thai law under the Thai Civil and Commercial code. Note that if you do not defend a divorce that your wife might also file for damages which may be granted. This may very well affect your property holding in Thailand should you not defend the divorce. The most common reasons for divorce has been listed below.
– You have committed adultery during your time of marriage. The most common defence to this is that you had permission to do this. Having a minor wife in Thailand is not uncommon and tends to be tolerated.
– Your wife has embarrassed you and made you ashamed. This would normally be added to adultery as a reason for the divorce as this reason would have to be very serious to stand on its own.
– Your wife has tortured you either physically or mentally. This would require a police report for physical torture and a doctor’s report. Mental torture would require a letter from a psychologist to testify to this. Overall this is a complicated reason which needs a lot of evidence during a divorce.
– Your wife has deserted you or you have not lived together for 3 years as husband and wife. This would also require proof that your wife has left and that you have lived by yourself for more than 3 years.
– Your wife has been declared insane or is insane. Note that this will require 2 applications to court. The first is for a divorce and the other is to have your wife declared insane. Should she be declared insane then the divorce application has to be redone as the court would have to appoint a guardian for your wife to look after her interests during the divorce. The court may also make a maintenance order where you have to support her on a monthly bases until the divorce has been granted.
– Your wife suffers from an incurable illness and you cannot live together as husband and wife because of this. Note that if you gave your wife the illness then you cannot use it as a reason for a divorce.
These are the most commons reasons for a divorce in Thailand. Adultery is usually the first reason with any of the other reason added in support. Divorce for insanity is very rare in Thailand and this would be very costly as it would run for years in order to complete it. Add in children and the issues of child custody and you can understand why as a foreigner this becomes even more complex. Where do the children live – your country or Thailand? Who will get child custody, you or a court appointed guardian.
Speak to a divorce lawyer in Thailand for more information and assistance if you are getting divorced and need legal advice. Search this website for more on law firms in Bangkok as well as law firms in Phuket for more information.