Directors in today’s global market are increasingly being held personally liable for their actions that harm their companies, as well as facing civil and criminal liabilities for failing to comply with the procedures and requirements of various laws. In Thailand, directors of private limited companies face the genuine possibility of criminal sanctions for violations of the Civil & Commercial Code (CCC). Further, there are several Acts for which the violation thereof can result in criminal sanctions, including fines and even imprisonment. Directors can find themselves subject to criminal sanctions for such minor infractions as late filing or inadvertently filling out a form incorrectly.
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On November 1st 2019, the Thai Ministry of Interior published two announcements regarding the fees for property registrations. One announcement is related to condominiums, the other announcement for land and buildings. According to the notifications, the registration fee for the transfer of ownership of a condominium, or a land and building at the Land Office will be reduced from 2% to 0.01%. The reduction only applies if the value of the condominium, or land and building, does not exceed 3 million THB.
As the Thai Baht is under pressure due to imbalanced capital flows, thus unusually strong in comparison to foreign currencies, the Ministry of Finance (MOF) and the Bank of Thailand (BOT) decided to loosen rules to facilitate capital outflows. MOF and BOT expect these measures will lessen pressure on the Thai Baht. These regulations are effective since November 8th, 2019 and include facilitations on:
When importing a boat from oversea to Thailand – even if it is solely for personal use and not for running a business – it is necessary to register the boat at the Marine Department in charge. Which department is in charge is determined by the mooring of the boat. To complete the registration process, the following documents are required:
After Thailand’s Personal Data Protection Act B.E. 2562 (2019) (PDPA) was passed into law, numerous provisions related to the collection, use, and disclosure of personal data will come into effect on May 27th, 2020.
As many foundations operate schools, or orphanages the possibility to own land is one of the key questions for them.
Under certain circumstances, a foundation may own property in Thailand. However, if a foundation has objectives that focus particularly or mainly on the benefit of foreigners, it may be deemed to be a foreign entity and may not own land in Thailand, referring to the Land Code, section 94 (4).
The Thai Foreign Business Act (“FBA”), A.D. 1999, prohibits foreigners from engaging in certain business sectors, including most of service businesses, without a Foreign Business License (“FBL”) or Foreign Business Certificate (“FBC”). However, the FBC will be granted swiftly for Americans, in most business areas, because of the US-Thai Amity Treaty of 1966, which gives exclusive rights and benefits to citizens of the USA who wish to establish a business in Thailand.
1. TM30 FORM
The TM30 form is an obligation for any house owner, possessor of a dwelling place or a hotel manager (“Hosts”) to declare a foreigner residing on his property (“Guest”) within 24 hours. This notification of residence, resulting from Section 38 of the Immigration Act (2522 B.E-1979) is now strictly imposed.
The Thai Land Code stipulates that – apart from a few exemptions – foreigners are not permitted to own land in Thailand. Many foreigners seeking to buy immovable property in Thailand, therefore, chose legal structures like leasehold, usufruct, or ownership of the property by a Thai company, to mitigate the restrictions. However, these legal structures have weaknesses and, if not set up properly, may even involve legal risks. To encourage foreigners to invest in property in Thailand, the Thai National Legislative Assembly on February 8th, 2019, passed the Sap-Ing-Sith Act. The Sap-Ing-Sith Act was published in the Royal Gazette on April 26th, 2019 and will come into effect on October 27th, 2019. The new law is aiming to encourage foreigners to invest in immovable property to boost the economy in Thailand. Requirements, as well as the rights and obligations of the Sap-Ing-Sith, are as follows: