Resolving a dispute is often not easy, and you may have to hire the most reputable lawyers to represent you.
Thailand has become an increasingly popular destination for foreigners and businesses in recent years. With its unique mix of culture and modernity, the country offers a wealth of opportunities for those looking to invest or do business here.
However, as with any location, there are potential risks and challenges that need to be considered before making the move to this beautiful country. One such risk is the potential for disputes to arise.
The Thai legal system provides a number of options for resolving disputes. Litigation lawyers in Thailand can help you decide which option is best for your situation. They can also help you with the process, including filing paperwork and appearing in court.
The legal system of Thailand is based on their own civil law, which means that cases are heard in a court by an independent judiciary.
Thailand has nine courts divided into three levels:
- Courts of The First Instance (or the primary court), the Provincial Court, and the Central Juvenile and Family Court;
- the intermediate appellate courts which consist of two divisions at the Regional level with separate panels for criminal and civil cases; and
- the four Supreme Courts comprising one Criminal Division, one Civil Division, one Administrative Division, and another General Affairs Division. Each division may have several panels each, specialising in specific subject matters or types of disputes.
Arbitration in Thailand is a popular means of resolving disputes. The Arbitration Act B.E. 2545 sets out the law governing arbitration in Thailand. An arbitration agreement is a contract between the parties to resolve their dispute by arbitration. The agreement must be in writing and can be made either before or after the dispute arises. If the parties have agreed to arbitrate, they are bound by that decision and cannot go to court instead.
This is often used in commercial transactions as it is a quick and efficient way to resolve disputes. The parties agree to submit the dispute to an arbitrator who will make a decision that is binding on both parties. The process is confidential and cheaper than going to court.
In Thailand, mediation is often used in family law disputes as it is seen as a way to resolve issues without having to go to court. The Mediation Act B.E. 2550 (2007) sets out the law governing mediation in Thailand. A mediation agreement is an agreement between the parties to try to settle their dispute by mediation. The agreement must be in writing and can be made either before or after the dispute arises. If the parties have agreed to mediate, they are bound by that decision and cannot go to court instead.
The mediator is a neutral third party who helps the parties reach an agreement. The mediator will not give an opinion on the rights and wrongs of the case or act as an arbitrator. The parties must reach their own agreement based on their relative strength in negotiations, without interference from the mediator. Once they have reached a settlement, it is legally binding upon them.
Conciliation is another ADR mechanism where a third party helps bring about a compromise between the conflicting parties without issuing legally binding decisions. Conciliations are usually conducted by conciliators who do not hold formal legal qualifications but may be qualified lawyers with experience dealing with similar cases.
Disputes can arise in any situation where two or more parties are interacting with each other. Whether you’re doing business in Thailand or just living here as a foreigner, it’s important to have an idea of how the Thai legal system works.