Wills in Thailand: Why is it a must to make a will in Thailand?
Having a will or not depends on whether the majority of your assets are in the foreign country and whether you have it distributed in a manner that is unconventional or different than what the law would normally dictate if you die intestate – or without a will.
If you have assets in Thailand, you do need a will else the Thai government will manage the distribution of your assets after your demise. Many countries have this rule and Thailand is no exception.
The government will not only control their remaining assets but also to dictate how to manage their remains, specific instructions on medical decisions, and on any specific requirements that they want taken care of in the worse situation.
Section 1656 of the Civil Code (Inheritance):
For long term, non national Thai residents.
It provides, a will may be made:
- in writing,
- dated at the time of making,
- dated at the time of making of the will and
- signed by the testator;
- before at least two witnesses present at the same time
- who shall then and
- there sign their names certifying the signature of the testator.
What to include?
|Personal information of the testator||· Full name,
· date of birth, address,
· nationality, passport number.
|Details of the heirs||· full names,
· dates of birth,
· substitutes in case the heir(s) predecease the Testator.
|Executor of the will
|· Names and addresses of executors
· You can appoint one executor and a substitute executor if the executor predecease,
· however they must be appointed by the court.
|Witnesses of the will||· Full name and
· details of ID-card or passport.
|Funeral requirements||· What should happen to your body when you die,
· Specific legacies, money or property that you give to someone after you die.
· Do you wish to give any jewelery cash legacies? If so state amount of gift, full name and address of legatees (including charities).
|Residue (residuary beneficiaries)||· details of who will inherit the residue of your estate
· Names of any substitute beneficiaries of residue.
Drafting a will may be a pointless and expensive endeavor if you have little assets or if your assets reside in another country. Example: if you are a British living in Thailand and most of your assets are in UK, then you may need to draft a will that is executed in UK and not in Thailand.