In Thailand, as in most countries, “When a person dies, his estate devolves to the heirs” (Article 1599 CCCT) and this, no matter how much or how little property you have.
If a person dies without a will, it is the law that will decide who will benefit from the deceased’s estate, called “legal heirs”. (Article 1603 CCC).
There are six classes of legal heirs in Thailand, each class having the right to inherit in the following order: (Article 1629 of the Civil and Commercial Code “CCCT”)
1. Descendants (children)
3. Full blood brothers and sisters
4. Half-Blood Brothers and Sisters
5. Grandfathers and Grandmothers
6. Uncles and aunts
Death with a Will
It would be comforting to know that at the time of your death, you will have taken the necessary steps to avoid problems and quarrels among family and friends.
-Give you peace of mind and protection regarding your final wishes ;
-It divides the estate by giving items to your heirs (specific bequests) or gives all of your property (universal bequest) to one or more people;
-He appoints the administrator of your estate (“administrator” or “executor”);
-He or she can elect guardians for minor children;
-He can make gifts of money (pecuniary inheritance) or property (think of furniture, car, houses, etc.);
-Includes specific persons (children of the spouse, for example);
-It can exclude specific people from your inheritance (spouse or partner, family members);
-It can decide on funeral arrangements;
There are several forms of wills in Thailand and you can choose the one that suits you best. For example, we speak about the holographic will, the will made before two witnesses, or the will made before a public authority.
– The holographic will is the simplest form of will. It does not cost a penny and can contain just a few sentences. It must be handwritten, not “typed” (like a computer). It must also be dated and signed by you. You do not need witnesses.
– The witnessed will must be written by you or someone else. Unlike the holographic will, the latter can be written on a computer. This is a very common form of will in Thailand.
The witnessed will must be signed by two capable, adult persons and these persons must be aware that this is your will.
– The will made before a public authority is registered at the Amphur. It has certain advantages related to the authenticity of the document. This type of will probably originates from the distinction between civil law an authentic act, a semi-authentic act and an inauthentic act. Therefore, it is considered the most difficult will to contest in Thailand and is similar to a will made before a “notary”.