Real estate and real property laws in the Thailand Civil and Commercial Code governing land and building and who owns or has use of it
Section 1298. Real rights may be created only by the virtue of this Code or other laws.
Section 1299. Subject to a provision of this Code or other laws, no acquisition by juristic act of immovable or of real right appertaining thereto is complete unless the juristic act is made in writing an the acquisition is registered by the competent official.
Where immovable property or real right appertaining thereto is acquired otherwise than by juristic act, the acquirer's right cannot be dealt with through the register unless it has been registered, nor can it, without registration, be set against a third person who has, for value and in good faith, acquired it and registered his right.
Section 1300. Where a transfer of immovable property or real right appertaining thereto has been registered to the prejudice of a person who was previously in a position to have his right registered, he may claim cancellation of such registration, provided that in no case cancellation be claimed against a transferee for value in good faith.
Section 1301. The provisions of the two foregoing sections shall apply mutatis mutandis to modification, extinction and revival of real rights appertaining to immovable property.
Section 1302. The provisions of the three foregoing sections shall apply mutatis mutandis to ships or vessels of six tons and over, to steam-launches or motor-boats of five tons and over, to floating houses and to beasts of burden.
Section 1303. Where several persons claim to have acquired the same movable property under different titles, the person who is in possession of the property is preferred that he has acquired it for value and has obtained the possession in good faith.
This section does not apply to movable property specified in the foregoing section nor to lost property or property acquired through an offence.
Section 1304. The domaine public of State includes every kind of State property which is in use for public interest or reserved for the common benefit, such as:
- - waste land and land surrendered, abandoned or otherwise reverted to the State according to the land law;
- - property for the common use of the people e.g., foreshores, water-ways, highways, lakes;
- - property for special use to the State e.g., a fortress or other military buildings, public offices, warships, arms and ammunition.
Section 1305. Any property which forms part of the domaine public of State is in-alienable except by virtue of a special law or Royal Decree.
Section 1306. No prescription can be set up against the State with regard to any property which forms part of its domaine public.
ACQUISITION OF OWNERSHIP
Section 1308. Where land is formed by alluvion, it becomes the property of the riparian owner.
Section 1309. Islands formed in a lake or water-way of in territorial waters, and beds of water-ways left dry, are the property of the Sate
Section 1310. If a person has, in good faith, constructed a building upon another person's land, the owner of the land becomes the owner of the building, but he must pay the constructor for any increase of value accruing to the land by reason of the building.
However, if the owner of the land can show that there was negligence on his part, he may refuse to take the building and require that it be removed by the constructor and the land put in its former condition, unless this cannot be done at reasonable costs, in which case he may require the constructor to buy the whole or part of the land at the market price.
Section 1311. If a person has, in bad faith, constructed a building upon another person's land, he must return the land after having put it in its former condition, unless the owner of the land chooses to have it returned in its present condition, in which case the owner of the land must pay at his option the price of the building or a sum representing the increased value of the land.
Section 1312. If a person has, in good faith, constructed a building encroaching on another person's land, the constructor is the owner of the building, subject to his paying the owner of the land for the use of such land and having his rights on the encroached land registered as servitude. The owner of the land may demand cancellation of the registration if subsequently the building is totally destroyed.
If the constructor of the building is in bad faith, the owner of the land may require that it be removed by the constructor and the land put in its former condition, at the expense of the latter.
Section 1313. If the conditional owner of a piece of land has constructed a building on it and the land becomes afterwards the property of another person by effect of the condition, the provisions of this Code concerning Undue Enrichment shall apply.
Section 1314. The provisions of Sections 1310, 1311 and 1313 apply mutatis mutandis to any kind of work which is fixed to land, and to the planting of trees or crops.
However, in case of paddy or other crops harvested one or more times a year, the owner of the land must either allow the person in good faith or the conditional owner who has made the planting to remain in the possession of the land till after the harvest on payment of a sum of money based on the rental value of the land, or take immediate possession of the land on payment of compensation to the other party.
Section 1315. When a person has constructed buildings, or has made any other work which is fixed to land, or has planted trees or crops, on his land with materials belonging to another person, he becomes the owner of the materials, but he must pay for their value.
Section 1316. If several movables belonging to different persons have been joined in such matter that they become component parts or indivisible, the different persons become co-owners of the composite thing, each person's share being proportionate to the value of his thing at the time of its being joined with the other things.
If one of the things could be regarded as the principal thing, the owner becomes the sole owner of the composite thing, but he must pay the value of the other things to their respective owners.
Section 1317. If a person uses materials belonging to another person to make a new thing, the latter person becomes the owner of such thing, irrespective of the question whether the materials can or cannot assume their former condition, but he must pay for the work.
However, if the value of the work greatly exceeds the value of the materials used, the worker shall become the owner of the thing which is the result of his work, but he must pay the value of the materials.
Section 1318. A person may acquire the ownership of an ownerless movable by occupation, unless the occupation is forbidden by law or is in violation of another person's right to occupation of such movable.
Section 1319. A movable becomes ownerless if the owner gives up its possession with the intention of renouncing its ownership.
Section 1320. Subject to special laws and regulations relating thereto, wild animals are ownerless so long as they have their freedom. Wild animals in zoological gardens and fishes in pounds or other enclosed private waters are not ownerless.
A captured wild animal becomes ownerless if it regains its freedom and the owners does not pursue it without delay or gives up the pursuit.
A tamed animal becomes ownerless if it gives up the habit of returning.
Section 1321. Subject to special laws and regulations relating thereto, a person who catches a wild animal on waste lands or in public waters, or, without opposition of the owner, on private lands or in private waters, becomes its owner.
Section 1322. If a wild animal which is wounded and pursued by one person is caught by another person or falls dead on another person's land, the first person becomes its owner.
Section 1323. A person who finds lost property is bound:
- to deliver it to the loser, the owner or any other person entitled to receive it, or
- to inform without delay to the loser, the owner or any other person entitled to receive it, or
- to deliver it within three days to the police or other competent official and inform them of all circumstances within his knowledge which may be material for the person who is entitled to receive it.
However, the procedure provided in sub-section 3 must be followed it the loser, owner or other person entitled to receive the property is unknown or does not take delivery of it.
In any case the property found must be kept with reasonable care until delivery.
Section 1324. A finder of lost property may claim from the person entitled to receive it a reward of ten per cent of the value of the property up to thirty thousand baht, and five per cent on the additional value. However, if he delivers the property to the police or other competent official, two and a half per cent of the value of the property shall, in addition to the reward, be paid as a fee to the Government service concerned, but, in no case, shall such fee exceed one thousand baht.
The finder is not entitled to any reward if he does not comply with the provisions of the foregoing section.
Section 1325. If the finder of lost property has complied with the provisions of Section 1323 and the person entitled to receive it has not claimed it within one year from the day of find, the ownership vested in the finder.
However, if the unclaimed property is an antique object, the ownership vested in the State, but the finder is entitled to receive a reward of ten per cent of its value.
Section 1326. The finding of property thrown into the sea or water-ways or washed ashore is governed by the laws and regulations relations thereto.
Section 1327. Subject to the provisions of the criminal law, the ownership of anything which has been used for committing, or has been acquired through, or is otherwise connected with, an offence, and placed under the care of a Government Department, is vested in the State if it has not been claimed by the owner within one year from the day of its being so placed or, in case of a criminal action having been entered in Court, from the day of final judgment. However, if the owner is unknown, the period shall be extended to five years.
If the property is perishable, on delay involves risks or expenses out of proportion to its value, the Government Department may, before the expiration of the periods, cause the property to be sold by public auction, provided that before the sale proper measures are taken for recording all such particulars as may enable the person entitled to receive the property to identify it and prove his rights thereto. After the sale, the net proceeds shall be substituted for the property.
Section 1328. Where a movable of value which has been hidden or buried is found under such circumstances that no person can claim to be its owner, the ownership is vested in the State. The finder is bound to deliver it to the police or other competent official, in which case he is entitled to receive a reward of one-third of its value.
Section 1329. The right of a person who has acquired property fro the value an in good faith is not affected even if the act under which his transferor acquired the property was voidable and has been subsequently avoided.
Section 1330. The right of a person who has in good faith purchased property at a sale by public auction under an order of the Court or of the Official Receiver in bankruptcy is not affected even if it is subsequently proved that the property did not belong to the defendant, judgment debtor or bankrupt.
Section 1331. The right of a person who has acquired money in good faith is not affected even if it is subsequently proved that it did not belong to the person from whom he acquired it.
Section 1332. When a person has in good faith purchased property at a sale by public auction or in open market or from a trader dealing in such things, he shall not be bound to return it to the true owner unless the latter reimburses the purchase price.
Section 1333. Ownership may be acquired by prescription under the rules provided in Title III of this Book.
Section 1334. Waste land and land surrendered, abandoned or otherwise reverted to the State according to the land law may be acquired according to the said law.
EXTENT AND EXERCISE OF OWNERSHIP
Section 1335. Subject to the provisions of this Code or other laws, the ownership of land extends above and below the surface.
Section 1336. Within the limits of law, the owner of property has the right to use and dispose of it and acquires its fruits; he has the right to follow and recover it from any person not entitled to detain it, and has the right to prevent unlawful interference with it.
Section 1337. If a person in the exercise of his right causes to the owner of an immovable property greater injury or inconvenience than should naturally and reasonably be expected or anticipated, having regard to the nature and situation of such property, the owner is entitled, without prejudice to any claim for compensation, to have such injury or inconvenience abated.
Section 1338. Restrictions imposed by law on the rights of an owner of immovable property need not be registered.
Such restrictions imposed by law on the rights of an owner of immovable property need not be registered.
Restrictions imposed in the public interest can neither be removed nor modified.
Section 1339. The owner of a piece of land is bound to take the water that flows naturally on to it from higher land.
Water that flows naturally on to lower land and is necessary to such land may be retained by the owner of the higher land only to such extent as is indispensable to his land.
Section 1340. The owner of a piece of land is bound to take water coming to it from the higher land in consequence of the artificial drainage of the higher land, if before the drainage the water flowed naturally on to his land.
If any damage is suffered by reason of such artificial drainage, the owners of the lower lands may, without prejudice to any claim for compensation, require the owner of the higher land, at the latter's expense, to carry the drainage right through the lower lands to a public waterway or drain.
Section 1341. The owner of an immovable property must not construct roofs or other structures which cause rain water to fall upon the adjoining property.
Section 1342. No well, pond, cesspool or receptacle for manure or refuse may be dug within two meters of the boundary line.
No ditch or excavation for laying underground water-pipes or similar installations may be made nearer to the boundary line than one half of the depth of such ditch or excavation provided always that it may be made at a distance of one meter or more.
In any case when the works mentioned in the foregoing paragraphs are carried out near the boundary line, due care must be taken to prevent earth or sand from falling in, or water or filth from percolating through.
Section 1343. Land may not be excavated or overloaded in such manner as to endanger the stay of soil of an adjoining piece of land unless adequate measures are provided for preventing and injury.
Section 1344. Fences walls, hedges or ditches, which serve as a boundary, are presumed to belong to the owners of the adjoining properties in common.
Section 1345. When a hedge, or ditch which is not used as a drain, belongs to the owners of two adjoining pieces of land in common, each of the owners is entitled to cut down the hedge or fill up the ditch to the boundary line provided he builds a wall or erects a fence along the boundary line.
Section 1346. A tree which stands upon a boundary line is presumed to belong to the owners of the adjoining pieces of land in common. Its fruits belong to such owners in equal shares as well as the timber itself if the tree is felled.
Either owner may require the removal of the tree, the cost of removal being borne by them equally. However, the neighbour who requires the removal shall bear the cost alone if the other waives his right to the tree. Removal may not be required if the tree serves as a boundary mark and cannot be replaced by any appropriate boundary mark.
Section 1347. The owner of a piece of land may cut off and keep roots of a tree or bush which have penetrated from the adjoining piece of land. He may also cut off and keep overhanging branches after giving the possessor of the adjoining piece of land reasonable notice to remove them, such notice not having been complied with.
Section 1348. Fruits falling naturally upon adjoining land are presumed to be fruits of such land.
Section 1349. If a piece of land is so surrounded by other pieces of land that it has no access to the public ways, the owner may pass over the surrounding land to reach a public way.
The same applies, if passage can only be had over a pond, marsh, or sea, or if there is a steep slope with a considerable difference of level between the land and the public way.
The place and the manner of the passage must be chosen as to meet the needs of the person entitled to passage and at the same time to cause as little damage as possible to the surrounding land. The person entitled to passage may, if necessary, construct a road for passage.
The person entitled to passage must pay compensation for any damage suffered by the land owner on account of the passage being established. Such compensation, except for damages arising from the construction of a road, may be made by annual payments
Section 1350. Where land has been so partitioned or partially transferred that a plot is left without access to a public way, the owner of such plot may claim right of way under the forgoing section only over the land which has been so partitioned or partially transferred.
In such case no compensation need to be paid
Section 1351. The owner of a piece of land may, after reasonable notice, make use of adjoining land so far as necessary for the purpose of erection, or repairing, a fence, wall or building on or near his boundary line, but he may not enter the dwelling house or a neigbour without the latter's consent.
If damage is caused, the neighbour may claim compensation.
Section 1352. The owner of a piece of land is bound, subject to reasonable compensation being paid him, to allow the laying through his land of water-pipes, drainage pipes, electric wires or similar installations for use of the adjoining land if, withour making use of his land they could not be laid or could be laid only at an excessive cost; but he may require that his interest be taken into consideration.
In exceptional cases where the installations are to be above ground, he may require that a reasonable proportion of his land, over which such installations are to be laid, shall be bought from him at a price which will cover the value of the land and compensation for any damage arising from sale.
Where circumstances are changed, he may require that the installations be removed to such different part of his land as may be suitable to his interests.
The cost of removal must be borne by the owner of the adjoining land. However, if the special circumstances of the case so require, the other land owner may be held liable for a reasonable proportion of the cost.
Section 1353. A person may lead his cattle into or through another person's unenclosed land for grazing and watering; he may fetch water from a well or pound within such land; provided always that it is not a plantation and is not prepared for cultivation, sown or covered with a crop. The owner may however forbid such action.
Section 1354. A person may, if permitted by local custom, enter a wood, forest or pasture land owned by another person to collect fuel or gather wild fruits, vegetables, mushrooms and the like, provided that the owner does not prohibit it
Section 1355. The owner of a piece of land along or through which a water-way passes is not entitled to draw more water than necessary for his reasonable needs to the prejudice of any other piece of land on the water-way.
Section 1356. If a property belongs to several persons in common the provisions of this chapter apply unless otherwise provided by law.
Section 1357. Co-owners are presumed to have equal shares.
Section 1358. Co-owners are presumed to have the right to manage the property in common.
Matters of ordinary management are decided by the majority of the co-owners. However, each co-owner may do an act of ordinary management unless the majority has decided otherwise; but, in any case he may do acts of preservation.
All important matters of management must be decided by a majority of co-owners who must also represent at least half of the value of the property.
A change of object may be decided upon only by the consent of all the co-owners.
Section 1359. Each co-owner may exercise, as against third persons, any right arising from ownership in respect of the whole property, subject however, in case of a claim for the recovery of the property, to the conditions specified in Section 302 of this Code.
Section 1360. Each co-owner is entitled to use the property in so far as such use is not incompatible with the rights of the other co-owners.
Section 1361. Each co-owner may dispose of, mortgage, or create a charge on, his share.
The property itself may be disposed of, pledged, mortgaged or made subject to a charge only with the consent of all the co-owners.
However, if a co-owner has disposed of, pledged, mortgaged or created a charge on, the property without the consent of all the other co-owners, and he subsequently becomes the sole owner of it, such act shall become valid.
Section 1362. Each co-owner is under the obligation to the other co-owners to bear in proportion to his share the costs of management, taxation and expenses for the preservation of the property as well as for its common use.
Section 1363. Each co-owner is entitled to demand partition of the property, unless he is debarred from doing so by a juristic act or in consequence of the permanent character of the purpose of the co-ownership.
The right to demand partition may not be excluded by a juristic act for a period exceeding ten years at a time.
A co-owner may not demand partition at an unreasonable moment.
Section 1364. Partition is effected by actually dividing the property, or by selling it and dividing the proceeds of sale, between the co-owners.
If the co-owners cannot agree as to the manner of effecting partition, the Court may, on the application of any of them, order the actual division of the property, and any inequality there may be in the shares allotted may be rectified by compensation in money. If such division is not possible or is likely to cause serious loss, the Court may order the sale of the property by private auction among the co-owners or by public auction.
Section 1365. If the co-owners are jointly liable to a third person for an obligation in respect of the common property, or for another obligation incurred for the purpose of fulfilling such obligation, each may, at the time of partition, require that performance be made out of the common property or secured therefrom.
If a co-owner is liable to another co-owner for an obligation arising out of co-ownership or for another obligation incurred for the purpose of fulfilling such obligation, the latter may, at the time of partition, require that performance be made out of the share of the common property allotted to his debtor or secured therefrom.
The above rights may be exercised against a transferee of a co-owner's share or a successor to the same.
If sale of the common property is necessary, the provisions of the foregoing section shall apply.
Section 1366. Each co-owner has, in proportion to his share, the same liabilities as a seller in respect of the property which the other co-owners have received under the partition.