How to have a Court Order for a Succession (inheritance or Probate) Case in Phuket?
The law differs from country to country, in some countries a succession case can be done by an administration officer. But in Thailand inheritance rights or succession or probate need a court order. This article gives you information about the succession case, both the succession with/without last will and testament.
Step by Step How to Have a Court Order For Succession Case
1-Who Has a Right to Request for this Order?
An heir of the deceased, an interested person or public prosecutor may apply to the Court to appoint an administrator of the deceased under the Section 1713 of Civil and Commercial Code (CCC). No government agency for probate, only the Court. However, Thai citizen has an option for land inheritance without court order by 30 days under rule and regulation ruling by the Land department.
2-Who can be an Inheritance Administrator?
The administrator must be a Major (over 20 years old) and a full sound mind person and not bankrupt by the court order. (Section 1718, 1711-3, 1715 of CCC)
The administrator may be appointed by the last will and testament and confirmed by Court order or appointed directly by the Court order in case the deceased hasn’t made the last will and testament. The administrator under the last will and testament may be appointed by the testator himself or by the person nominated for the purpose in the last will and testament. The administrator may be sole administrator or a joint administrator.
3-Which Evidence is Needed?
The principal documents required are the Death certificate of the deceased, family tree with divorce or family member death certificates, list of property, details of the administrator identity. In case there is more than one heir, a clear consent letter from all heir is required. All documentation being submitted to the Court shall be translated into Thai language.
When the court appoints a person to be an administrator, the court always wants to make sure that there will be no problem between the heirs of the deceased and no heir will bring a case to the court for withdrawal of an administrator. Consequently, details of each evidence should be cleared without reasonable doubt, this is the reason that a Family tree and Consent letter from all heirs of the deceased is required even if the deceased has appointed an administrator by his/her last will and testament.
4-Which Court to go to?
The competent Court to appoint the administrator is the Court where the deceased has his/her Domicile at the time of death. If at the time of death the deceased has his principal residence in Phuket, the succession case shall be applied in Phuket Court for example. (Section 4 quarter of Civil Procedure Code and Section 37-47 of CCC).
In case of multiple residences, one can be freely chosen.
5-How the Testimony Works in Succession Case?
If there is no litigation, two cases are possible. Firstly, one of the heirs, designated by law or by Last will and testament, accepts to be the administrator, so he shall come as witness at the Court.
Secondly, no one of the heirs accept to be the administrator, but all agree to designate one person who accepts the role. In this case, one of the heirs and the administrator designated by them shall come as witnesses to the Court.
If a litigation exists concerning the Administrator, the provisions of the Civil procedure code governing contentious cases are applied automatically.
Time Frame for Succession Case
About 1 month after the testimony the court will issue the order to appoint the administrator. The standard frame of time for the succession case is 4 months. However, if an argument is stated, the frame of time becomes different and the Civil Case procedure time shall apply.
Important Responsibilities, Duties and Rights
The administrator comes up with full responsibilities, duties and rights, i.e. he/she shall fulfill all necessary acts as expressed or implied in the last will and testament in case of and to administer and distribute the estate. During his mission, his duties and liabilities with heirs and third persons are governed by the agency section. Notably, it is stipulated that the administrator shall begin to make an inventory within 15 days after the Appointment by the court etc. (According to Section 1719, 1716 and 1728 CCC)
You may see the different between law in Phuket and home country, Inheritance Rights or Inheritance Tax and Probate in Phuket may also different. To avoid the headache of your heirs and prepare in advance the procedure, come to visit us, and as we wrote it before, make a last will and testament. is the best.
Master in Business law, French Lawyer and Thai Legal Advisor.
and Akenarin Thongplod Thai Barrister at Law, Thai Attorney and Notarial Services Attorney.