Legal Requirements for Getting Married in Thailand
Allow least a couple of weeks from arrival in Thailand to wedding date for processing paperwork. We recommend giving yourself more time due to weekends, holidays or unexpected delays.
Necessary legal documents:
Please note that all documents must be submitted in Thai. Contact the Embassy in your home country or your Embassy in Thailand for an authorized translator. If your documents are translated, be prepared to submit the original copies in your native language for verification as well as the translated version.
- Certified copy of birth certificates
- Valid Passports and a photocopy of each; identification page and Thai visa page
- Affirmation of Freedom to Marry/Affidavit declaring that both partied are free to marry (obtained from your Embassy in Thailand)
- Divorce or death certificates, if applicable. Women who plan to remarry, must wait 310 days from the dissolution of their previous marriage or provide doctor’s proof of non-pregnancy. Exceptions are made for those women planning to remarry the same man or if the couple has a child.
Legal requirements to get married:
- Ceremony (Civil/Religious)
All legally recognized weddings preformed in Thailand are civil ceremonies of sorts…they must be registered at the Amphur office, where there is no ceremony, just paperwork. Traditional and religious ceremonies are not recognized, although an Amphur office official can accompany your ceremony of choice to make it legal.
- Age and Relation
The bride and groom must be at least 20 years of age. If they are underage, parental consent is necessary. With parental consent, either or both parties must be at least 17 years of age. A Thai translation of this parental consent is necessary as well. Note that the legal age in your home country must be met to be recognized. For example, the United States requires that both parties be 18 years of age for your marriage to be recognized upon your return to the United States. The bride and groom cannot be related by blood or adoption.
Two witnesses over 18 years of age must be present for the ceremony and provide their passports.
Take all paperwork and photocopies of each to your Embassy, and Amphur Office in Thailand.
Your Embassy can provide you with an Affirmation of Freedom to Marry. Next, the couple would need to attain a certified translation of this affirmation into Thai. If you are translating from English to Thai, the American Embassy has provided a list of translators.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will provide authentication of the affirmation and certification of the translation in Thai. Be sure to bring the original and the translation. This process can take a few days.
Once this request has been processed, submit these documents to the Thai registrar at the Amphur (Registry Office) to register your marriage and apply for a Marriage Certificate. The marriage can be registered before or after a wedding ceremony. Many wedding planners or wedding packages will arrange an official from the local Amphur office to come to your ceremony to make it legal.
- A couple is officially married once the paperwork at the Amphur office is filled out and in return the issued Marriage Certificate received. The Marriage Certificate will be issued in the Thai language. We suggest the bride and groom have the certificate translated for legal purposes in their home country.
- The Marriage Certificate can be brought to your Embassy in Thailand to register your marriage in your home country. However, they will take the original, so make sure you have a Certified, Translated Marriage Certificate in your native language first and a photocopy of your Thai marriage license. If that feels too risky, you can wait until you get back to your home country.
Note: This information can change at any given moment. For up-to-date information, contact your embassy in the country in which you plan to marry.
We invite you to contact us with any new information. Be sure to note, “Update Marriage Requirements in Thailand” in the subject line.
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