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Is a contract written only in English legaly valid in Thailand or does the original have to be in Thai?

My consern is that I have noticed that many of my friends have bought houses and such, and the only proof of ownership they have is in English.

Thanks

Mato

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^ That is incorrect. Foreigners can own houses, but not the land it sits on.

Absolutely real estate sales contracts need to be in Thai language. Your native language isn't obligatory but you better be damned sure you know what you're signing.

<deleted>, Get a reliable and INDEPENDENT certified translation.

Any REPUTABLE, competent lawyer will tell you this.

If they have purchased a home, or a 30 year lease it should be registered with Land Department and received a stamp. That is proof of ownership along with a book they can apply for.

Edited by TigerWan
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Foreigners cant own houses in Thailand (at least not the land that its build on) Condo's and such are possible car's too.

^ That is incorrect. Foreigners can own houses, but not the land it sits on.

Absolutely real estate sales contracts need to be in Thai language. Your native language isn't obligatory but you better be damned sure you know what you're signing.

<deleted>, Get a reliable and INDEPENDENT certified translation.

Any REPUTABLE, competent lawyer will tell you this.

If they have purchased a home, or a 30 year lease it should be registered with Land Department and received a stamp. That is proof of ownership along with a book they can apply for.

Thank you for your answers, I think both of you misunderstood my question.

I didn't want to know if a foreigner can own or buy a house.

What I would like to know is; if a contract is legally binding when it´s written in English only (or another foreign language) , i.e. not Thai. It could for example be an employment contract.

Mato

Edited by khunMato
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What I would like to know is; if a contract is legally binding when it´s written in English only (or another foreign language) , i.e. not Thai. It could for example be an employment contract.

Mato

If its signed by both legal parties and properly witnessed it can be written in sanskrit on the back of cigarette box and would be legally binding, as the signed document shows that both parties have agreed on certain terms and condictions.

It is however customary when signing contracts where one of the parties native language is not English to have copies of the contract in all pertinent languages

in case someone is not comfortable signing an English language version with all its loverly legalese...:lol:

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^ That is incorrect. Foreigners can own houses, but not the land it sits on.

Absolutely real estate sales contracts need to be in Thai language. Your native language isn't obligatory but you better be damned sure you know what you're signing.

<deleted>, Get a reliable and INDEPENDENT certified translation.

Any REPUTABLE, competent lawyer will tell you this.

If they have purchased a home, or a 30 year lease it should be registered with Land Department and received a stamp. That is proof of ownership along with a book they can apply for.

I have purchased 8 condos in thailand, all were in English.

Now I work for a company that builds and sells new condo projects.

Thai sales are in Thai, all other are in English. This is as per the condo act and all contracts are regulated

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In English or another language? Ok...untill you have to go to court... only Then you will understand the value of these "farang language" based contracts!

Don't forget Thailand is a very chauvinistic country!

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In English or another language? Ok...untill you have to go to court... only Then you will understand the value of these "farang language" based contracts!

Don't forget Thailand is a very chauvinistic country!

If the contract is written is English or any other languge it is still legally binding, but in the case of going to a Thai court, if the matter could not be resolved in the contract languge it would require legal translation and this wouldnt take away the fact the contract conditions are still binding.

Cant see what chauvinism has go to do with it...:blink:

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Is a contract written only in English legaly valid in Thailand or does the original have to be in Thai?

In English it is legal. Be careful, however, if there is also a thai one as if you go to court, the Thai one will count.

BTW In thailand no one calls themself 'khun'. You'll sound like a <deleted> if you do.

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Is a contract written only in English legaly valid in Thailand or does the original have to be in Thai?

In English it is legal. Be careful, however, if there is also a thai one as if you go to court, the Thai one will count.

Therefore I would think is better to stick with the English contract. If you need to go to court you would probably be able contest the (unsigned) Thai translation if you felt it did not represent the same meaning as the signed English version.

Likewise I have prepared a will for my Thai assets in English. On my death this would be translated into Thai and presented to the court for disposal of assets. I would expect the beneficiaries of my estate to ensure that the translation of the English into Thai will has been made correctly.

The advantages of having just an English will are that I fully understand the wording of the will, and I can easily make changes to the will in 'plain' English if I want to. Also it defers the cost of the Thai translation until I am dead.

I hope I am correct in the above, but would welcome any comments to the contrary.

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Is a contract written only in English legaly valid in Thailand or does the original have to be in Thai?

In English it is legal. Be careful, however, if there is also a thai one as if you go to court, the Thai one will count.

Therefore I would think is better to stick with the English contract. If you need to go to court you would probably be able contest the (unsigned) Thai translation if you felt it did not represent the same meaning as the signed English version.

Likewise I have prepared a will for my Thai assets in English. On my death this would be translated into Thai and presented to the court for disposal of assets. I would expect the beneficiaries of my estate to ensure that the translation of the English into Thai will has been made correctly.

The advantages of having just an English will are that I fully understand the wording of the will, and I can easily make changes to the will in 'plain' English if I want to. Also it defers the cost of the Thai translation until I am dead.

I hope I am correct in the above, but would welcome any comments to the contrary.

A will is not really a contract. It is a legal document stating what you want to happen toyour estate when you die?

I am no expert. But I was of the opinion that if a Thai is concerned, then any contract must be in Thai. So that the Thai can understand it. If I was ever going to be part of contract in Thailand though I would certainly want it in English also for the same reason.

jb1

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If they have purchased a home, or a 30 year lease it should be registered with Land Department and received a stamp. That is proof of ownership along with a book they can apply for.

Thank you for your answers, I think both of you misunderstood my question.

I didn't want to know if a foreigner can own or buy a house.

What I would like to know is; if a contract is legally binding when it´s written in English only (or another foreign language) , i.e. not Thai. It could for example be an employment contract.

Mato

Excuse me but why would it be an employment contract if they have bought accommodation, surely it would say so if it were in English.:blink:

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Contracts in English are valid, however, if there is a dispute the Court will require a translation certified by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Sunbelt Asia lawyers recommend having the contract in both Thai and English then there won't be a need for a translation later. If you do not feel comfortable signing a contract in Thai, then it is better to get the contract translated and certified anyway, thus avoiding any delay if there are issues.

Additionally, in response to another poster's question, a will in english is valid but it must must be translated into Thai and certified by the MFA in order for the Court to appoint the executor of the estate.

[sunbelt][/sunbelt]

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"...not Thai. It could for example be an employment contract."

If you have an employment contract in English, there may be a Thai contract that is different.

A contract is required by the Labor Office for work permits. I've seen schools have teachers sign an English language version, then have them sign a generic Thai version later when the wp paperwork was submitted.

With all the paperwork you end up signing, many don't even realize they signed a contract in Thai.

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Heard about a case a few years ago where a westerner paid a deposit on a house,where he had the option to cancel the deal and contract in 30 days,with his deposit back all in English,

Guess what? he did cancel,but on the Thai contract there was no mention of the refund if he backed out,so did he get his deposit back ?.....:lol:

And the worse part of it was the Housing developer arranged both Thai and English Contracts!

Edited for Typo

Edited by MAJIC
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I know this is slightly off topic but Sunbelt Asia mentioned a will and having the Court appointing an executor. I have already had my will translated into Thai and will have it certified at MFA. What bothers me is having a court appoint an executor. I have already nominated and executor for my will and would not like the court to make that decision after I am dead. Is it mandatory if you have already stated in your will who is to be the executor?

Sorry it this is off topic and it can be moved or deleted in required.

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Contracts in English are valid, however, if there is a dispute the Court will require a translation certified by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Sunbelt Asia lawyers recommend having the contract in both Thai and English then there won't be a need for a translation later. If you do not feel comfortable signing a contract in Thai, then it is better to get the contract translated and certified anyway, thus avoiding any delay if there are issues.

Additionally, in response to another poster's question, a will in english is valid but it must must be translated into Thai and certified by the MFA in order for the Court to appoint the executor of the estate.

[sunbelt][/sunbelt]

What happens when there are discrepancies between the Thai and the English version ?

In Hong Kong, where contracts are usually written in both Cantonese and English, it's written that in case of discrepancies between the English and the Cantonese version, the English version would prevail. What about Thailand ?

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Contracts in English are valid, however, if there is a dispute the Court will require a translation certified by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Sunbelt Asia lawyers recommend having the contract in both Thai and English then there won't be a need for a translation later. If you do not feel comfortable signing a contract in Thai, then it is better to get the contract translated and certified anyway, thus avoiding any delay if there are issues.

Additionally, in response to another poster's question, a will in english is valid but it must must be translated into Thai and certified by the MFA in order for the Court to appoint the executor of the estate.

[sunbelt][/sunbelt]

What happens when there are discrepancies between the Thai and the English version ?

In Hong Kong, where contracts are usually written in both Cantonese and English, it's written that in case of discrepancies between the English and the Cantonese version, the English version would prevail. What about Thailand ?

Seeing as Thailand doesnt recognise two "offical" languges as in the case of Hong Kong, the Thai version would preveil seeing as Thai is the only "offical" language.

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In Hong Kong, where contracts are usually written in both Cantonese and English, it's written that in case of discrepancies between the English and the Cantonese version, the English version would prevail. What about Thailand ?

Cantonese. :)

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Correct, Thai is the official language and it is the Thai document that the Courts will consider, hence the need for an officially certified translation.

As for the executor question, you choose the executor but the Court must appoint them as such so they can legally handle your affairs.

[sunbelt][/sunbelt]

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