Thai citizenship for women with a Thai husband

Chris Larkin

Long time resident of Bangkok. Married, three daughters. Managing director of CLC Asia (www.clc-asia.com). Lots of interesting knowledge and experience built up over time which I hope can be of use to people.

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22 Responses

  1. Sally says:

    Hi there,

    Did your wife lost her Australian citizen?
    And how much did the whole process cost ?

    Thanks

    • Hi Sally,

      No she didn’t. The whole process costs 5000 baht.

      • Ken says:

        Hi, is the expedited process the same if a foreign husband marries a thai wife? Or only for a foreign lady marries to a thai husband? Thanks. Ken

        • The timeframes are similar, 3 or so years from application to grant. Due to a quirk in the law, male applicants require the sign off by HM the King, while women only need the sign off by the Minister of Interior. This can shorten the womans rouge by a few months other things being equal. However, if Thailand does happen to have a Minister of Interior who is not inclined to sign any applications, then everyone gets held up.

        • KC Yuprajan says:

          Hi Chris,
          Your article is very helpful. Thank you!
          I just want to ask, if my thai husband doesn’t have a job and i am the one with monthly salary and providing for the family, we have 2 Thai children and been living here for 16 years, can i still apply for Thai citizenship?
          Thanks, KC

          • Hi KC,

            Unfortunately he’ll need to show proof of employment and tax payments of the equivalent of 30,000 baht per month for the past tax year. It can be from his own business or formal employment.

            Regards
            Chris

  2. Kimusa says:

    Hi! Thank you very much for the detailed info! I am a foreigner married to Thai husband. Wanted to get the citizenship, but when we check with immigration staff while renewing my visa, they told us it’s gonna cost 200k+ THB for the application and not guaranteed to be successful. So we decided not to do it. So your whole process only cost 5K THB no extra cost!? 😮

    • Dear Kim,

      You asked the wrong people. Immigration DO NOT handle citizenship applications, only the police special branch do. Most likely, the immigration people you were speaking to were referring to Permanent Residency (which they do process), however, as per the article, you can skip PR and apply for citizenship at Special Branch – which costs 5000 baht.

  3. Kimusa says:

    Hi again! Sorry one more question!
    Do your wife need to renew visa every year after getting the citizenship? The immigration staff was saying even after getting citizenship I still have to report to immigration every year and also need the re-entry permit! Is it true? I mean it’s useless if I still have to go immigration to do all that every year 🤦🏻‍♀️
    Thank you very much 🙏🏻🙇🏻‍♀️

    • Hi Kim,

      Again, what immigration were referring to was Permanent Residence, which requires a re-entry permit if you want to travel outside of the country. However, PR, once granted, means you never have to do a visa extension ever again.

      Citizenship, which is what this article refers to, means that you become a citizen of Thailand and are able to stay in the country indefinitely without visas or any other restrictions and you can come and go as you please.

  4. J says:

    Hi, great article! Thank you for the information. The link for the list of required documents is not working. Can someone provide the web address? Thank you!

  5. Lola Pavlovich Khumban says:

    Hi Chris, first, many thanks for sharing such a valuable information. I’m married to Thai for ten years, mother of 8-year old son. I work, and have a valid work permit for all the time. The problem is, my husband is a taxi driver, currently without any employment (freelancer). Am I still eligible to apply? Thanks in forward 🙂

    • Hi Lola,

      One of the things that your husband is going to have to produce is a tax return for the previous year showing that he has an income of at least an average of 30,000 baht per month (360K per year). With deductions the annual income tax payable would be minimal – less than 1000 baht by my rough calculations. The income doesn’t have to be just from one job – if he does other things it all counts towards it so he just has to submit a tax return declaring at least 30,000 baht per month.

      In the initial interview they will ask about his employment and will need some sort of letter attesting from his employer stating to the fact.

      If he works for himself the threshold goes down to 20,000 baht per month. It is easy enough to go to the tax department to claim (and pay tax on) an income above 20,000 baht per month, but special branch will still want some sort of other evidence so they can cross reference his income from the previous year.

      The official link says the following:

      3. เอกสารหลักฐานของสามีผู้ขอ
      .
      .
      (9) หนังสือรับรองรายได้ ระบุตำแหน่งหน้าที่การงานและรายได้เงินเดือน โดยผู้มีอำนาจลงนามในหนังสือรับรองของ หน่วยงานนั้น (ราชการ รัฐวิสาหกิจ) เอกชน ตามหนังสือรับรองการจดทะเบียนบริษัท หรือห้างหุ้นส่วนจำกัด และถ้าประกอบอาชีพอิสระให้ลงลายมือชื่อรับรองตนเอง โดยมีรายได้พอเลี้ยงครอบครัว มีรายได้ไม่ต่ำกว่า 20,000 บาทต่อเดือน และกรณีผู้ยื่นคำขอประกอบอาชีพสามารถนำรายได้ของตนไปรวมกับรายได้ของสามีเพื่อให้ถึง 20,000 บาทต่อเดือน

      3. Documentary evidence of the applicant’s husband

      (9)Income certificate specifying the position, occupation and salary from the authority signing the certificate of that department (government, state enterprise) in accordance with the company registration certificate or limited partnership. If self-employed, self-signed With sufficient income to support the family having a monthly income of not less than 20,000 baht and if the applicant can apply her income together with the husband’s income to 20,000 baht per month.

      Please see this link for further details

      Based on this, it appears that indeed your income would be counted.

      So on this one, my broad advice would be to ensure that you have a strong case to show documented earnings for the 12 months (for both of you) before applying.

      Hope this has been of help.

      • Lola Pavlovich Khumban says:

        Hi Chris, thank you so much for your detailed reply. I’ll do my ‘homework’ following your instructions. Again, many thanks, much appreciated. Fingers crossed 🙂

  6. Sofia says:

    Hello,

    I have two children ( under 20 ) with a Thai man but not married. I have been living here since 2004 and always been working.
    Can I also apply to Thai citizenship without having to go thrpugh the permanent residency route?

    • Hi Sofia,

      As Thailand doesn’t recognise defacto relationships you would have to qualify for PR under your own steam (ie 3 years uninterrupted work permits and income tax) and then move to citizenship after that. All up that route may take up to 7 or 8 years as a bare minimum (talking account application times and a minimum of 3 years on PR) before you become a citizen.

      Obviously being married negates that need, but it needs to be a formal marriage and you’ll need to be formally married for at least 1 year with children before you can apply.

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