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Legal Advice Needed


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Me, a german male, and the mother, a stateless female residing in Thailand, together have an almost five month old son.

My name is on the birth certificate, but that is insufficient to make me legally the father, I have been advised.

Until I am legally the father, our son will remain stateless, like his mother, which in Thailand is a very very very undesireable condition, that I sought to change asap. Once I am legally the father, our son will automatically gain german citizenship.

I may become legally the father under german law by visiting the german embassy in Bangkok together with the mother and our son, however, in order to successfully complete this process, the embassy requires all kinds of documents from the mother, that she neither possesses, nor will be issued by the thai government, since she is not a thai citizen; e.g. ทะเบียนบ้าน etc.

We might challenge a rejection of our application in a german court, but due to the cost and difficulty of travelling to Bangkok in the first place (she needs special permission from the amphur office to travel), we have retained that option for last resort.

I may become legally the father under thai law by visiting the amphur office and requesting การจดทะเบียนรับรองบุตร, but they will not grant that until our son is five or six years old and can talk, we would have to go to court and get a court order.

I hired a lawyer and our court date was December 9th, the honorable court's decision should have been made within a week, our lawyer told us at first, but now it has been well over a month and we have heard nothing.

Now my question: How long do family courts take to decide? Could we be kept waiting for months or years or even indefinitely for the decision? Can a higher court force a lower court to make a ruling?

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I read another post were someone mentioned the process would take about 2 months. But that also depends on the complexity of the case. I don't know how speedy Thai courts are, but a week seems a bit quick. In your case it is very helpful that you are named on the BC and are living with the mother and I wouldn't worry about the outcome. But you will just have to wait for the court.

A German court is under European and international law bound to take the intrest of the child at hearth and will legalise you as the fahter as it is in the childs intrest to be legitimised and have a nationality. In case you need to go to a German court it might also be possible that the child (or the mother on his behalf) files a paternity suit (I don;t know it this is possible under German law). A German lawyer can tell you what would be the best course in your case. I mention it so you know you might have 2 options and not only the legalisation process.

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A German court is under European and international law bound to take the intrest of the child at hearth
So is the thai court, but that is one problem, to the court I may not appear to be the ideal father.

1) I am jobless. Indeed the terms of my visa expressly prohibit me employment in Thailand.

2) I have no property. I may practically 'own' two houses here, but only through some complicated lease agreement with option on a further lease, because the law expressly prohibits me from owning real estate.

3) I am not permanently in Thailand. I may have continually lived here for the last 18 months and plan to stay, but only on consecutive tourist visas and visa exempt entries, because I do not fulfill the requirements for any longer term visa, that would allow me to officially establish residence in Thailand.

Edited by Bastian
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From all I undderstand and have seen at this board a Thai court will rule within the interest of the child the same as a European court. The fact that you are unemployed isn't very relevant, the fact that the child will have a legal fahter (and a nationality as a result) will weigh heavily for a judge. A judge will consider what is against you being the legal fahter, being unemployed isn't against you. With a legal father the child will be better of.

A tourist visa or visa exempt entry doesn't allow you to work, but will allow you to look for work. Once you have work you can get a non-B visa and work permit. Another option to gain a more permanent status is to go for an educational visa. If you register at a Thai language school and study Thai language on an average of 4 hours a week you can get an educational visa and stay on that in Thailand for 5 years (including extensions). Cost is about 29,000 baht a year for the course.

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