List of Terms

Thailand related terms (legal and practical).

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Term Definition

A unit designed for use as a dwelling in a multi unit building occupied by more than one household. When registered as a condominium with the Thailand land department offering individual private ownership of the units and joint ownership of the common parts of the property, without registion as a condominium the building usually remains owned by the developer offering rent of the units to different tenants.

Appraised value

A government assessed property value for a specific real property in Thailand based on a calculation method set by the Land Department and the Treasury Department and is adjusted every 4 years based on market conditions. Is among others used to determine the (minimum) amount of tax that must be paid.


A juristic entity, the formal structure, created by a group of people who have joined together for a particular purpose and conducting an activity other than that of sharing profits or incomes earned (section 78 Thailand civil and commercial code).


A mutual promise to marry or official engagement, under Thai law (section 1435) the act of a man promising to marry a woman made official by a gift (khongman) to his Thai fiancée (section 1437) and could include a gift (sinsod) to the woman's (fiancée) parents.


This is a certificate for ownership of land issued by the Thailand land department. A land ownership title deed containing the name of the owner, location of the land, an area map showing the boundaries on all four sides and on the backside an index of registration.

civil law

Codified system of private law, body of laws primariy dealing with the relationships between natural and juristic persons, civil law as the written source of law as opposed to (common law) judge made law, finding its origin in ancient Rome.

Common-law marriage

A marriage not formalized in the customary manner as prescribed by law but recognized as a valid marriage after a period of time in which a man and a woman have cohabited and presented themselves as husband and wife. 

Competent Authority

The competent government official or person appointed by law with the power to perform a designated function.


a multi unit residential building where persons are able to hold personal freehold ownership of the unit and joint ownership in common areas of the building. What defines a condominium, as opposed to general multi unit apartment buildings, is the form of  ownership.

criminal law
Codified system of law, or body of laws, penal laws, dealing with the punishment of offenders prescribing offense against 'the public' or against another persona and prescribing a penalty for one who violates it.
Author: Thailand Lawyer Online
De Cujus

civil law term in relation to inheritance and sussession laws of the deceased as the testator 

Del credere

Italian for believe or trust. Legal term for an arrangement in which an agent takes possession and agrees to sell goods for another and who guarantees that a buyer is trustworthy and, in case the buyer defaults, compensates the principal.


under thai law the domicile of a natural person is the place where he has his principal residence. Also one's legal residence or the place where a person has his permanent principal home (section 37 civil and commercial code).

En ventre sa mere

French language for 'In his/her mother's womb' or 'in his/her mother's belly'. Standard legal language and refers to the unborn child (fetus in utero) which is accepted to be a minor, provided it is subsequently born alive. Found for example in section 15 Thailand Civil and Commercial Code second paragraph: 'the unborn child (in his mother's womb) is capable of rights provided that it is thereafter born alive.'


money or other goods transferred to a neutral third party licensed under the Thailand Business Escrow Act and held by this party (usually financial institution) on behalf of contract parties pending fulfilment of some condition of a contract...

Family Law

The area of law that deals with family relationships, rights, duties (particularly marriage, adoption, divorce, custody, maintenance), or more general, laws dealing with matters of impact on family relationships. 

FET form

The official statement by a licensed financial institution in Thailand (Thai bank) to report the remittance and exchange of foreign currencies into Thai baht under reporting requirements of the Bank of Thailand. Source: samuiforsale


Term in contract law, refraining from doing something that one has a legal right to do, giving of further time for repayment of an obligation or agreement (not to enforce a claim at its due date).

Force majeure

Standard legal language (French) referring to an extraordinary event or circumstance beyond control of parties. The risks beyond the reasonable control of a party such as war and natural disasters (act of god) that could not be evaded through the exercise of due care and which is not a product or result of the negligence or malfeasance. In the Thailand Civil and Commercial Code it is described as 'any event the happening or pernicious result of which could not be prevented even though a person against whom it happened or threatened to happen were to take such appropriate care as might be expected from him in his situation and in such condition' (section 8).


A foundation in Thailand is a juristic entity registered under the provivions of the civil and commercial code. A nonprofit charitable organization that will donate funds to public charity, religious, art, scientific, education or other purpose for the public benefit and not for sharing profits (section 110 civil and commercial code).

Author: Thailand Lawyer Online

As a legal term (in for example use and fruits as in usufruct) it refers to natural fruits such as natural production, offspring obtained from a thing and legal fruit such as interest (rent) obtained periodically by the owner from another person for the use of the thing.


This refers to someone who is entitled to inherit a deceased person's part, portion or entire estate according to the deceased person's legal last will or the laws of succession and inheritance (read more...).

Author: Thailand Lawyer Online
Juristic person

A legal entity that is recognized by law as the subject of rights and duties other than a natural person (human being).  In Thailand a juristic person can come into existence only by virtue of the civil and commercial dode or other laws (section 65 civil and commercial code).


Under Thai law property given by a man to his fiancée as evidence that the marriage shall take place. An engagement (betrothal) is not valid without such property given (section 1437).

Land Registry
the government department where they register the ownership, possession or other rights in property (land) in Thailand
Author: Thailand Lawyer Online
Last Will
The most recent legal document or declaration made by which a person expresses his or her wishes as to how his or her property is to be distributed at death (in Thailand pursuant Thai succession laws) and names one or more persons and optional appoints an executor to administrate the estate until its distribution.
Author: Thailand Lawyer Online
Contractual arrangement meaning that you have a lease agreement with the owner to use and occupy his real estate (land and/or house) property for a period of time. In Thailand also called tenancy or rental agreement.
Author: Thailand Lawyer Online
Lèse majesté

French language term meaning in Thailand a crime (as treason), insult, offence against the dignity of the King, the Queen, the Heir-apparent or the Regent governed by the Thailand Criminal Law.

Mutatis Mutandis

Latin language for 'by changing those things which need to be changed', in law texts meaning, more or less, the referred sections shall be applied on the same but is to be altered, when necessary, on points of detail.


means a measurment unit in Thailand used to define an area land, 1 Ngan of land is equal to an area of 400 square meters in metric measurment. 

in Thailand legal definitions meaning a Thai person or Thai company in whose name a property or company shares are registered but who acts on behalf of another, the actual or beneficial (foreign) owner (read more...).
Author: Thailand Lawyer Online
Nor Sor Sam

Land title deed issued by the Thailand Land Department confirming the right of possession of government land granted to an individual owner. This type of land has a lower survey status (lower than for example the nor.sor.sam.gor land title deed) and the borders of the land as shown on the land title deed should be confirmed with neighboring land plots.

Nor Sor Sam Gor

Land title deed issued by the land department confirming the right of possession by possession of government land granted to an individual owner. The boundaries of the land are accurately surveyed in relation to neighbouring land plots.


A post-nuptial agreement is a contract between spouses concerning their personal or matrimonial assets made during the course of the marriage. As opposed to pre-nuptial (before marriage) in Thailand this is a marriage contract governing ownership of financial assets created by spouses after entering into marriage (sections 1465 - 1492 Thailand civil and commercial code).

Prenuptial Agreement

under Thai law an agreement made by a couple before they marry concerning management over future marital and personal property and listing in an annex to the prenup contract their personal assets and debts at the time of marriage.

Author: Thailand Lawyer Online
Property law

the area of law dealing with forms of ownership, possession, encumbrances and rights to immovable property in thailand


means a unit of measurment of land in Thailand. A unit of surface expressed in Rai is equal to 1600 square meters in metric measurment, 1 acre is approx 2,5 Rai.

Real rights

A real property right, as opposed to contractual rights, real rights (e.g. superficies, usufruct, habitation) are attached to an immovable property (rather than a person) and remain in full force upon transfer of ownership of the property (it 'follows' to the property), and the first registered real right has priority above any subsequent registered newer right.

Author: Thailand Lawyer Online
legal term used in property law describing the non-possessory right or beneficial interest that a person has over an immovable property of another person (between servient property and dominant property), it runs with that immovable property or properties and can apply to a variety of benefits and burdens and is governed by section 1387 to 1401 of Thailand the civil and commercial code.
Author: Thailand Lawyer Online
Sin Somros

that is marital assets or property of the marriage jointly owned by husband and wife, in general all properties acquired after the marriage (except those listed in section 1471 under 3)

Sin Suan Tua

that is personal non-marital property, i.e. generally all debts and assets owned and acquired before the marriage (including 'Khongman')


Property given by the man to the parents, adopter or guardian of his fiancée before marriage as part of engagement ceremony (betrothal), in return for the woman (fiancée) agreeing to marry the man (found in Thai law section 1437 civil code). 

Author: Thailand Lawyer Online
Sor Tor Gor

Land document issued by the forest department granting the right to a private person to reside and live in a specific area of land in reserved forest land (public land prohibited for private ownership), a sor.tor.gor gives a personal right (like the right of habitation) and cannot be sold but can be passed on by inheritance.

Sui Juris

A person who is capable of managing one's own affairs, like making a valid contract. A person who has all the rights and is not under the power of another (e.g. a minor). Every one of full age is presumed to be sui juris. In Thailand a person on completion of twenty years of age becomes sui juris (section 19 Thailand civil and commercial code).


civil law legal term, registered real property right attached to land by which a person obtains a temporary right to own buildings, structures or plantations upon land belonging to another person governed by the civil code section 1410 to 1416.

Tabien Baan

address and resident registration book issued by the local municipality for every apartment, house or place to live in and registers and administrates the persons having principal residency (domicile) at a dwelling.


Or tessebaan (municipality) is the local government administrative body of a village, town, or city in Thailand.


a house and resident registration book (tabien baan) with a bright yellow cover used for the registration of foreign nationals who stay in Thailand at the dwelling on a temporary basis.


a house and resident registration book (tabien baan) with a dark blue colored cover used for the registration of thai nationals and foreigners with official residency in thailand having their permanent home at the specific dwelling.

Tor Dor 21

Standard Thai script land office power of attorney giving authrority to someone to act on behalf of the owner of the immovable property at the land department's office and to do a described action or transaction regarding a specific immovable property in Thailand.


real property legal term, under Thai law a registered property right attached to an immovable property by which the owner grants another person the exclusive but temporary possession, use and enjoyment of his real property (governed by the civil and commercial code sections 1417 to 1428)

Author: Thailand Lawyer Online

means a unit of measurment of land in Thailand, a land surface or unit of land measuring 1 Wah equals 4 square meters.