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Property Inheritance

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  • Property Inheritance

    I have no idea if this is the correct forum to post.

    My Thai mother owned a condo in Bangkok and she recently passed away. In her will she left the property to me. I am however a British citizen and I don't own a Thai passport and citizenship. Though having researched online I am considered a foreigner, I read information on the legal aspect of foreigners owning property in Thailand and it seems that it is a difficult process to acquire.

    My question is this...Is it possible for a child of a different nationality from Thai parents to inherit land or property in Thailand?

    Thanks in advance!

  • #2
    Unless you get your Thai citizenship, you will be treated as a foreigner with all the rules, regulations and restrictions applied.
    You are however, able to own the condo but not the land it sits on. You should be able to sell it and thats what my advice would be. Get a Thai lawyer to convey. A good honest one if there is such a thing.

    So to answer your question, yes you can inherit the property. Is it any good to you is another matter.
    Judging others before you have met isn't a wise option.


    • #3
      Not 100% correct. You can own the condo but only if the total foreign ownership of all the condos in that building is 49% or less.


      • #4
        Thanks for the reply. My sister has a Thai passport, my mother never wanted me to get a Thai passport because she thinks I would be called out to train in the army.


        • #5
          Hi Davy

          Just to clarify, were you born in Thailand or the UK?
          Paul พอล


          • #6
            I was born in UK to Thai and British parents.


            • #7
              This will be too vague to be of much use but, without Thai citizenship, I think you will have 12 months to sell the property, or transfer ownership. Might it be possible to make some arrangement with your sister?
              Gordie T Geordie


              • #8
                You still need to check out the % of foreign ownership in the building.


                • #9
                  Gordon is correct. Irrespective of the 49%.
                  You can inherit but unless you qualify under the other restrictions (which you dont on the face of it) must sell within 12 months of the registered inheritance.

                  How long have you had/ acquired the property through inheritance? Have you submitted your 'claim' of ownership?

                  I am not a great believer in the the morals of Thai solicitors but in this case I would strongly advise you seek some or you may well end up loosing it. I take it your sister is resident in the UK and would find the whole thing as confusing as it is.
                  Judging others before you have met isn't a wise option.


                  • #10
                    Why would he have to sell a property that he is entitled to own? If a foreigner is eligible to own under the 49% rule, what possible reason is there for him having to sell the property?


                    • #11
                      The 49% rule will apply if he wants to continue owning (being a foreigner)

                      His question was can he inherit. So the simple answer is yes but unless he becomes a 'Thai' he has 12 months to dispose of it.
                      If he has no intention of keeping it (if allowed under the current rules) he has to sell/ transfer it to an eligible person/ entity or face the real possibility of it being swallowed by the 'state'.

                      As for becoming a Thai citizen and his mothers worry about conscription, I believe he may have options depending on his age etc. Either way the timeline is running out regarding the 12 month rule. It cannot be extended and he is already some way in to the 12 months.
                      Judging others before you have met isn't a wise option.


                      • #12
                        It may be Thailand and yes, crazy things happen but I very much doubt they would let him inherit the property then force him to sell it to an 'eligible person' when he is eligible himself. I have not studied the rules on inheritance but maybe they don't cover this possibility? That is not to say that common sense would prevail - even in Thailand. I would be gobsmacked if the only way he can own it is to sell it and then buy it back.

                        The inheritance is a transfer and the person it would be being transferred to would be an 'eligible person'. I really don't see why, as an eligible person, the property cannot stay with him once inherited without any further transfers.

                        A decent Thai lawyer would answer this - I'm seeing mine in a couple of weeks I'll try to remember to ask him about this but Davy, don't rely on that, you need to take good legal advice. I'm confident that you can own the property providing the 49% rule is met.


                        • #13
                          Could you not work a deal with your sister if she is a thai passport holder? That would cut some corners ?


                          • #14
                            Davy, the question is then;
                            a) Does the building fall under the 49% rule?
                            If yes, then you can inherit and keep. Remember, you will inherit all the 'good and bad' (whatever that is) along with this. Things like ongoing utilities and factor/maintenance issues. Mortgages and loans set against it (if any).
                            b) If it is out with the 49% rule, you can still inherit but would HAVE to sell before 12 months.
                            Indecently the law dictates you have to sell not transfer, a big difference. Albeit a token 'sell' and it would incur fees etc.

                            My advice still is contact a solicitor. I dont recomend or promote this company but you can email them the question;

                            Judging others before you have met isn't a wise option.


                            • #15
                              Taken from this website , 7th. section down :-

                              Condominium ownership transfer and inheritance
                              A foreigner who acquires a condominium unit by inheritance, either as statutory heir or inheritor under will, shall acquire ownership, however, unless the foreigner qualifies for ownership under Section 19 Condominium Act', it is required by law that the foreigner shall dispose of the unit within 1 year from the date of acquisition.

                              Check-out all the links within that section

                              Note that it says " ... dispose of the unit ... " and not " ... sell ... " which means that a deal with your Thai-citizen sister would seem to be acceptable.

                              BTW, that's a useful reference for anybody that might stand to inherit in Thailand. For example, in the absence of a will, those of us that are married to a Thai can inherit a portion of the estate - see Distribution in the absence of a will. Of course, a will takes precedence.

                              e.g. If a wife dies leaving a husband & 2 children (whether his or his step-children), the estate is divided equally between all 3. Any land ownership, though, is still subject to disposal within 1 year.

                              Maybe that's when the problems start!!