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Is It Easy And Possible To Write Your Own Will In Thailand Without A Lawyer?


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Hiring a lawyer it seems can cost a fair amount of money to have a will written for my Thai family. Can I write a will and summit it at the local district office where I live? What process is needed. Any helpful information I would be most grateful.

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I have written my own will in duplicate but I am still unsure as to how secure it is because the wording is very important, witnesses are not officially required and without witnesses there is always the need to eventually prove that it is you who actually wrote it. Better get it witnessed twice if u do write your own to be on the safe side.

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Posted (edited)

I went to my local amphur to enquire.

1st they said not possible,then after going through their archives it was.

I gave up in the end as what i thought would be a simple process with only bank accounts involved,they wanted to turn it in to a tea party with all family present as well as neighbours and friends to prove i was in a  sound state of mind.

Since i didn't want everyone to know our business we left it at that.

So it can be done.

Edited by farmerjo
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My wife and I have written our own wills for our assets in Thailand.  Each will has two witnesses.  After our deaths, the wills will only have to be officially translated into Thai.  We also stipulated, for the American embassy, that our bodies are not to be repatriated. 

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You would not need a lawyer at all.

Write your will, sign it, put it in an envelope and leave it at the district office.

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Posted (edited)

Depends of what you consider a “fair amount of money”

 

Mine lawyer in the USA cost $150.

Had it notarized and witnessed at the US Embassy and held by my next of kin.  
 

A Thai lawyer shouldn’t be charging more than that. 

Edited by LarrySR
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You can make your own will, certainly.

Whether it will stand up in court or on the probate trail is a different question.

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3 hours ago, Raindancer said:

Please see my post on this subject below:  Ignore the first link.   See my post below that.

 

Correct.  Thai law does NOT require probate of all wills.

1.  Under thai law sect 1635  there are rules for statutory heirs.

2.  Furthermore, the legally married spouse of the deceased has automatic rights to the estate, unless you provide a will to the contrary.

3.  Finally,  not ALL provinces/ states in Thailand require probate for All of an estate.

 

Now for those who pass themselves as wannabee lawyers and being  rather fed up of certain annoying  statements I visited the Amphur on Monday, specifically to ask about leaving a bank account to ones legally married wife after my demise.

 

This is nothing to do with all my other assets.  They have already been dealt with. AND, there are no other heirs in my line!!

 

I had just been to the bank about this issue and they said it is NOT illegal for a wife/ husband to gain FULL access to the deceaseds bank account, providing i gain authority from my local Amphur. 

 

This is their (Amphur)official reply. 

 

Provide the following documents:

 

1.   Passport and copy of first page.

2.   Provide a translation of passport ( first page).

3.  Copy of bank book/ books.

4.   Certificate of mental competence from a doctor. 

5.    Provide a will in Thai language stating the sole beneficiary of your bank accounts.

6    Provide a copy of the Tambien Bahn plus ID card 

of the sole beneficiary.

7.   Copy of marriage certificate and original kor ror 2.

8.   Bring two witnesses to the Amphur, to witness your signature.   They should also provide ID or passports to verify their status. 

 

I know that I previously stated that I had previously registered a will in English with my Amphur,  without a doctors certificate, which I showed the Officer in Charge.    It was still extant.  But rules had changed since then.

 

But, because of Thai government policy to reduce all Bank accounts to 1,000,000 guarantee for investors from 5,000,000, I had to move things around to new accounts. And so I had already prepared most documents prior, apart from the doctors note, which was new to me.

 

Hence my visit to the bank and Amphur for clarification on making a new will, SPECIFICALLY,  for bank accounts and nothing else. 

 

Today, everything has been ratified, signed  sealed and authorised.

 

Now, whenever the day comes, my wife can access my bank accounts "legally".

 

I hope that helps someone.

Even if it is only one person, it will have been worth the time to post this on the forum. 

 

 

  •  

bon mot  friend  

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YES

 

Here a template:

Just print it, sign and send back to me:

 

Me, Mitkof Island of world famous ASEAN NOW forum hereby pass on all my assets the my friend and ASEAN NOW colleague RafPinto.

All my cash holdings and real estate holdings as cars, gold, land will go with immediate effect to my friend.

Kind regards,

 

Signed/Mitkof Island

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26 minutes ago, Lacessit said:

You can make your own will, certainly.

Whether it will stand up in court or on the probate trail is a different question.

Why shouldn't it if it is clear and witnessed properly and the executor is not a simpleton?

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1 minute ago, topt said:

Why shouldn't it if it is clear and witnessed properly and the executor is not a simpleton?

The devil is in the detail. Permit me to doubt there are many Thais who would have the necessary knowledge to be a competent executor.

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16 hours ago, Mitkof Island said:

Any helpful information I would be most grateful.

There is a basic template available on here for a small cost -

Otherwise you should be able to engage a lawyer for a "simple" will for 5-10k baht depending on where you live/go.

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Just now, topt said:

There is a basic template available on here for a small cost -

Otherwise you should be able to engage a lawyer for a "simple" will for 5-10k baht depending on where you live/go.

Mine cost me 6000 baht, Thai and English.

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1 minute ago, Lacessit said:

The devil is in the detail. Permit me to doubt there are many Thais who would have the necessary knowledge to be a competent executor.

I understand what you are saying however @Raindancer suggests probate my not be needed in all cases - personally I have no idea and would work on the basis it will be needed.

 

1 minute ago, Lacessit said:

Mine cost me 6000 baht, Thai and English.

Using a lawyer I presume?

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3 minutes ago, topt said:

I understand what you are saying however @Raindancer suggests probate my not be needed in all cases - personally I have no idea and would work on the basis it will be needed.

 

Using a lawyer I presume?

Yes.

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9 hours ago, Card said:

I have written my own will in duplicate but I am still unsure as to how secure it is because the wording is very important, witnesses are not officially required and without witnesses there is always the need to eventually prove that it is you who actually wrote it. Better get it witnessed twice if u do write your own to be on the safe side.

There are possible traps in writing it yourself:

 

- Writing things which, in certain wording, might well be illegal. E.g. 'Henry gets everything if he kills my brother before 6.00 pm on xx May xxxx'. Killing/murdering people is illegal therefore a sentence  like this in a will is not valid in any way.

- Writing a sentence etc., which could be interpreted 2 ways, ambiguous.

- Writing something in clause 1 which conflicts with what's written in clause 4. Etc.

 

Some aphhurs offer to help to write wills but beware (all the points above), the staff who do this are not trained lawyers and not trained specicically in how to write/construct a will. And they make up things that 'sound nice' but are not required by law.  

It's not necessary to register a will at the local amphur office, but some Thai and foreigners do.

 

Registered or unregistered it makes no difference to the intent of the writers wishes, or to the court processs to administer the granting of a court order to pass the assets to those nominated in the will.

 

By Thai law the will must pass through the appropriate court and the court (if alll in order) will then issue court orders to be presented at banks, at the land titles office etc., to actully get funds/land etc., passed to the person(s) nominated in the will.

 

 

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21 hours ago, Raindancer said:

Please see my post on this subject below:  Ignore the first link.   See my post below that.

 

Correct.  Thai law does NOT require probate of all wills.

1.  Under thai law sect 1635  there are rules for statutory heirs.

2.  Furthermore, the legally married spouse of the deceased has automatic rights to the estate, unless you provide a will to the contrary.

3.  Finally,  not ALL provinces/ states in Thailand require probate for All of an estate.

 

Now for those who pass themselves as wannabee lawyers and being  rather fed up of certain annoying  statements I visited the Amphur on Monday, specifically to ask about leaving a bank account to ones legally married wife after my demise.

 

This is nothing to do with all my other assets.  They have already been dealt with. AND, there are no other heirs in my line!!

 

I had just been to the bank about this issue and they said it is NOT illegal for a wife/ husband to gain FULL access to the deceaseds bank account, providing i gain authority from my local Amphur. 

 

This is their (Amphur)official reply. 

 

Provide the following documents:

 

1.   Passport and copy of first page.

2.   Provide a translation of passport ( first page).

3.  Copy of bank book/ books.

4.   Certificate of mental competence from a doctor. 

5.    Provide a will in Thai language stating the sole beneficiary of your bank accounts.

6    Provide a copy of the Tambien Bahn plus ID card 

of the sole beneficiary.

7.   Copy of marriage certificate and original kor ror 2.

8.   Bring two witnesses to the Amphur, to witness your signature.   They should also provide ID or passports to verify their status. 

 

I know that I previously stated that I had previously registered a will in English with my Amphur,  without a doctors certificate, which I showed the Officer in Charge.    It was still extant.  But rules had changed since then.

 

But, because of Thai government policy to reduce all Bank accounts to 1,000,000 guarantee for investors from 5,000,000, I had to move things around to new accounts. And so I had already prepared most documents prior, apart from the doctors note, which was new to me.

 

Hence my visit to the bank and Amphur for clarification on making a new will, SPECIFICALLY,  for bank accounts and nothing else. 

 

Today, everything has been ratified, signed  sealed and authorised.

 

Now, whenever the day comes, my wife can access my bank accounts "legally".

 

I hope that helps someone.

Even if it is only one person, it will have been worth the time to post this on the forum. 

 

 

  •  

What district office was this in what province?

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17 hours ago, topt said:

I understand what you are saying however @Raindancer suggests probate my not be needed in all cases - personally I have no idea and would work on the basis it will be needed.

 

Using a lawyer I presume?

Who is the lawyer in what province? Can a lawyer from another province be used?

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55 minutes ago, Mitkof Island said:

Who is the lawyer in what province?

You are quoting the wrong person. Another member said they used a lawyer.

55 minutes ago, Mitkof Island said:

Can a lawyer from another province be used?

Yes.

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Many good things have been stated on this post.

I would add 3 more

1 You can have as many originals as you like. They simply need to be identical. 

So as a minimum  you may consider originals for:

yourself

your lawyer

the beneficiaries

 

2 The most important person in the process -post death -is the administrator.

The local amphur is not the administrator.

 

3 Many Farang give their ATM card plus PIN to their partner.-just prior to the death.

if the partner uses the ATM  post the death -then technically this is illegal. The partner has no legal permission to use the ATM. A joint account solves this problem.

 

 

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In the west the primary reason that wills are declared invalid is that they do not properly dispose of the deceased assets in full.

 

The way to address this is to draft your will as follows:

 

1. Detail specific one off gifts first

2. and then state that all of the residual of my estate is to be liquidated and distributed to the following people (in even or other wise) shares.

 

Both witnesses and the testator should sign the will at the same time, but if you don't do this, make sure that everyone signing uses THE SAME PEN.

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A D.I.Y will in Thailand.

Shows your true love for your family !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

what could ever go wrong !!!!!!!!!  and your not there anymore to fix anything.

Amazing cheap charlies of the ex pat community.

Good luck.

 

 

 

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12 hours ago, Delight said:

A joint account solves this problem.

I agree for normal accounts but not if it is the account used for retirement extension funds in which case you need to keep 1,600,000 Baht in the account NOT the standard 800,000.

I beleive that some IO's do not eeven allow joint accounts for retirement extensions.

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On 5/15/2022 at 11:02 PM, The Hammer2021 said:

I an doing my Thai  will tomorrow its very cheap. In the UK I used a 'pack' from WH Smith.

Most "commentators" on this subject in the past have suggested that your Thai will, to avoid some potential probate issues, should at least be in be in both Thai and English.

 

From what I have read it seems to make sense to me.

Are you planning to get yours translated in Thailand, or even in the UK?

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If assets and legal heirs exist in Thailand and abroad, things may get complicated. Possibly, all heirs must agree in writing before bank accounts abroad can be accessed. Planning the execution of your last will is as important as allocating your assets. Even with my legal background, I got specialist advice before drafting my last will.

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