How Can New Zealand Citizens Get Married in Thailand?

New Zealand Citizens Get Married in Thailand

Have you ever thought about getting married in Thailand? For many New Zealanders, the idea is appealing, but the legalities can seem daunting. This guide simplifies the process, outlining the steps you need to take to ensure your marriage in Thailand is legal and recognized. 

From required documentation to procedural steps and associated costs, we provide clear and straightforward information to help you plan your special day without any legal surprises.

Requirements for Marriage in Thailand

1. Eligibility

Before planning your wedding in Thailand, it’s important to check if you meet the basic criteria. The legal age for marriage is 17 years or older in Thailand. If either party is under 20, parental consent is necessary. 

Make sure that you and your partner are legally free to marry. This means that if either of you has been previously married, you must provide proof of the marriage’s legal termination, either through a divorce certificate or a spouse’s death certificate.

2. Necessary Documents

Preparing the right documents is a crucial step. As a New Zealand citizen, you’ll need your passport and a Statutory Declaration Form, which confirms your legal ability to marry. This form is available at the New Zealand Embassy in Bangkok. 

Remember, if you have been married before, the relevant divorce or death certificate is also required. Accuracy and completeness of these documents are vital to avoid delays or legal complications.

Marriage Procedure

1. Statutory Declaration at the New Zealand Embassy

Your first step is a visit to the New Zealand Embassy in Bangkok. Here, you’ll complete a Statutory Declaration, a formal statement of your legal eligibility to marry. When you visit, bring your New Zealand passport and the contact details of two non-family referees. 

The embassy charges a fee of 1,700 THB for this service. If you were previously married, bring along your divorce certificate or the death certificate of your former spouse. It’s advisable to book an appointment in advance to avoid delays.

2. Translation of Documents

Once you have your Statutory Declaration, the next step is to get this document, along with any divorce or death certificates, translated into Thai. While there are many translation services available, especially around the embassy and the Consular Affairs Department, it’s essential to choose a reputable service to ensure accuracy.

3. Legalization of Documents

After translation, your documents must be legalized. This process, performed at the Thai Consular Affairs, involves verifying the signature on your Statutory Declaration. You can expect to pay a fee, typically between 200 to 800 THB per document. The processing time can vary, generally taking up to two days.

4. Registration of Marriage

The final step is the registration of your marriage at a Thai district office, known as a Khet office in Bangkok or an Amphur office elsewhere. It’s wise to bring an interpreter if neither party is fluent in Thai. 

At this stage, you’ll need your translated and legalized documents, along with your passport. Making an appointment beforehand can streamline the process.

The Amphur offices located in Bangkok are:

  • Pathumwan Registration Office:
    • Address: 216/1 Chula 7, Kwang-Mai, Bangkok 10330
    • Telephone: 02-214-3004
  • Prakhanong Registration Office:
    • Address: 1792 Sukhumvit Soi 54, Kwang, Bangjak, Bangkok 10250
    • Telephone: 02-311-1107
  • Bangrak Registration Office:
    • Address: 5 Nares Road, Kwang Siphraya, Bangkok 10500
    • Telephone: 02-236-1395

Costs Involved

1. Statutory Declaration Fee

The first cost you will face is the charge for the Statutory Declaration at the New Zealand Embassy, presently priced at 1,700 THB. This expense covers the processing and certification of your declaration, a necessary part of the legal procedure.

2. Translation and Legalization Costs

The cost of translating your documents into Thai can vary depending on the translation service you choose. 

The legalization of these documents at the Thai Consular Affairs Department also incurs a fee, ranging from 200 to 800 THB per document. These costs are subject to change, so it’s advisable to confirm current rates before proceeding.

3. Additional Expenses

While the fees for the declaration, translation, and legalization are the primary costs, don’t forget to budget for additional expenses. These might include travel costs to and from the embassy and translation services, accommodation if you’re staying in Thailand for a while, and any costs associated with a wedding ceremony if you plan to have one.

Additional Considerations

1. Legal Recognition in New Zealand

After your marriage in Thailand, it’s necessary to have it recognized in New Zealand. This might involve registering your Thai marriage certificate with relevant New Zealand authorities. For a clear understanding of this process, consulting with a legal expert is recommended.

2. Cultural Aspects and Ceremonies

Thai weddings provide a once upon a time cultural experience. Including traditional Thai elements in the celebrations, although not mandatory for the legal process, is a choice many couples make. Early planning of these traditional aspects aids in creating a more genuine and delightful experience.

3. Sponsoring a Spouse for Migration

If you plan to bring your Thai spouse to New Zealand, you’ll need to understand the immigration requirements. 

Reach out to the Immigration Section at the New Zealand Embassy for detailed information on visa applications and necessary paperwork. Starting this process early is advisable for smoother proceedings.

These points are key to not only ensuring a legally valid marriage but also to respecting cultural traditions and preparing for your future life together.

Contact Siam Legal

Marrying in Thailand as a New Zealand citizen involves a clear series of steps: verifying your right to marry, preparing the required documents, and following the legal steps for registration. Understanding the costs involved beforehand aids in effective budget planning. Cultural factors and future immigration considerations can also enrich your marriage experience.

For personalized advice and professional legal support, contacting Siam Legal is a smart move. Their expertise in the marriage registration process in Thailand offers peace of mind and clarity, making sure that your special moment in life is not only memorable but also legally valid. Keep in mind, a bit of preparation can greatly contribute to turning your dream wedding in Thailand into reality.

To contact Siam Legal, please use this form, completely fill-out the form below, and submit it.

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