Thai citizenship when born overseas

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.

18 Responses

  1. Karlee says:

    Hi, can you provide any further information if having a Thai Birth Certificate and Passport (with the 13 digit number) is enough to get my Thai ID card. This is my first passport and I do not have access to my Tabien Baan or know if Im registered in one.

    Any extra info would be great as I don’t speak Thai and need to organise someone to come with me to the district office.

    • Hi Karlee,

      Where are you based currently?

      If you were born overseas, it is unlikely you have been registered on a Tabieen baan unless it was done for you as a child. It is easy enough to check anyway.

      But if you aren’t you’ll need to get registered on the Tabieen baan first before you can get your ID card.

      You’ll need to bring your original Thai BC issued overseas by the embassy, and the passport you entered Thailand on. Do you also have a thai passport issued by the embassy?

      Other likely pieces of information are copies of you parents ID and their names transliterated into Thai. You’ll need two Thai citizens to vouch for you, plus the ‘house master’ of the tabieen baan where you want to be registered.

  2. k says:

    HI Chris,
    I’m currently based in Bangkok, I entered on my Thai passport. I was advised that I won’t be able to renew my passport unless i get a Thai Id card. IN my passport I already have an Thai ID number, so it seems i was registered as a child to a Tabieen baan. I also have my BC from both countries. One of my parents has passed away so would a death certificate suffice?

    • Hi Karlee,

      So you’ll need to figure out where you’ve been registered on the tabieen baan to start with (but any district office can do that) and get your Thai ID card organised. Whether that requires a copy of the actual tabieen baan with your name on it, I’m not sure, but once you have the ID card you can renew your Thai Passport very easily.

      The other option is to renew your Thai passport at the embassy in the country of your birth (if you were indeed born overseas). They have been know to waive the requirement for an ID card given its not always possible for Thai citizens living overseas to have an up to date ID card, or even have one at all.

      Hope this helps.

  3. Jen says:

    Hi,

    I’m born overseas and my parents got me a thai birth certificate and when I was little I also had a thai passport which is expired now. I called my local embassy to ask on how to get my passport renewed which I can only do with a registration in a ta bien baan and an ID number which I can both only obtain in Thailand.
    To my knowledge I was not registered in a Ta bien baan as a child. If I fly into Thailand with my foreign passport and then try to get registered in my moms or her family’s ta bien baan, are there any issues I will face? How long does the process take? Which documents should I take with me? And will if I want to get an Id afterwards will I have to choose between my two nationalities?

    Thank you!

    • Hi Jen,

      Thanks for your message. Given you were born outside of Thailand you aren’t automatically registered on a tabieen baan, so it will be up to you to register in person. There won’t be any (nor should there be) issues registering having your name put on your family members tabieen baan, but it may take a couple of visits to sort the paperwork and have Thai citizen witnesses (usually family members) come vouch for you. Following being registered on the tabieen baan you then need to get your ID card, usually in the same office but that is more a formality once you have your registration done.

      Once fully in the system, you’ll be able to easily get a new Thai Passport. If you are looking to stay in Thailand for any extended length of time you’ll need to depart Thailand on your foreign passport and the re-enter Thailand on your new Thai passport.

      Thailand has no issues with dual citizenship. You are already a Thai citizen from birth so already a dual citizen. You will however need to check if your current citizenship allows you to maintain another citizenship.

      Hope this helps.

  4. Peter says:

    Hi,

    I was born overseas and dont have the Thai BC and was thinking of fixing this now.
    However I no longer live in the country I was born in and im wondering if I can get the BC in the current country I recide in if I contact the thai embassy here?
    And if possible what documents would be needed?

    BR,
    Peter

    • Hi Peter,

      Where were you born?

      As far as I know you can only work via the Thai embassy in the country you were born in and via the Department of Consular affairs in Bangkok, which will just liaise with the embassy in the country of your birth.

      No harm in approaching the Thai embassy in the country you are in now and see if they will act as liaison, but I suspect it may be something they refuse to do. Having said that, applying for a birth certificate can usually be done via mail, so you are probably going to have more luck dealing with them directly, and asking the documents they will require. The documents you need will likely be the ones outlined in the article above.

      All the best.

  5. Naiyana says:

    Hi,
    I am a thai citizen,married in Malaysia.
    I never got my marriage registered in Thailand.
    I am due to deliver in March 2020 in Malaysia.
    I want to enquire if my baby will get thai citizenship here in Thailand, (i mean the i.d card) even if my marriage not registered here and never change my initials from Miss. to Mrs.???

    Thank you in advance!

  6. Jidee says:

    Hi there, My name is Jidee and I’m 47. I was born in America to a Thai mother. I’m a dual citizen and went through the process and just recently received my Thai birth certificate and first Thai passport. I was told at the embassy in Washington D.C. that I cant renew my passport till I get a national id card. I am coming to Thailand in April to get this, my question is; do I register in a house book first and then go to get my id and where does one do these things? I was also wondering if I have to worry about paying the fine for not being around for army conscription. I don’t plan on moving to there any time soon but I know I will retire there someday.
    Thanks, Jidee

    • Hi Jidee.

      First congratulations of the Thai passport on getting the paperwork done. Its good to hear they issued you your first passport at the embassy.

      They are correct, in that while they may be able to issue you a first passport being overseas born, the passport system essentially requires you to have an ID card. That requires you to register yourself in Thailand at a district office. For this you’ll require someone (a relative or a friend who is the ‘house master’) to allow you to be put on their house book, or ‘tabieen baan’. You’ll need your Thai BC, Thai passport and two witnesses to vouch that you are who you are. It may take couple of visits, but once on, you’ll be issued with an ID number, and following that, you can immediately get an ID card which is very straight forward.

      As for the military stuff, given you are over 45, you aren’t required to undertake any type of registration at all, so I think you should be fine. Even if they query it, there isn’t much they can do.

      Anyway, hopefully this has been helpful. All the best.

  7. Tom says:

    Hello,

    My son is 18, and has a Thai passport through his mum who is a Thai citizen. I am British and he has dual nationality. He is currently in Thailand and needs to get his Thai ID card, but the local office has said he needs his parents consent. His mum and I both live in the UK so this is not practical, although I could in theory travel to give consent. Is this actually correct?
    He has his Thai BC with him and is now on the family Tabien Baan. He has a current Thai passport and has his British passport with him too. His Thai grandad is with him and he has had the housemaster and one other vouch for him, but seems we are stuck at the moment!!
    Any advice gratefully received

    • Hi Tom,

      Yep, anyone under 20 in Thailand is considered a minor, so need both parents to sign off on most things. There are probably two things you can do, short of travelling out to Thailand (which obviously will work but also the most expensive).

      – Speak to the Thai embassy in London and see if they have any forms which you can sign there (and witnessed by them) which would be acceptable to the district office where you are at.
      – If the ID card isn’t urgent, given he is now registered on the tabieen baan he should be able to get the ID card from the embassy. They do issue them, but again check to see if they will issue his first one for him. I seem to recall that sometimes the can’t.

      Anyway, they are the two main options I can think of.

      Cheers
      Chris

      • Tom says:

        Thanks very much Chris. His mum has asked at the embassy and they say they can’t help! Our son is in Thailand so can’t easily come back to the UK. So basically the only way is for both his mother and I to be there at the office with him to give consent? That seems incredible, and expensive!

        • Seems to be the case! Is your son living permanently in Thailand? Have the district office given any alternative suggestions as to what to do in the case the father can’t attend? It wouldn’t be unusual for that to be the case where one parent (for whatever reason) can’t attend.

    • Tom says:

      Hello Chris,

      Thanks for your help so far. I’ve been doing some reading.
      The reason I was given that I can’t give consent is that his mother and we were not married and I am not a legitimate parent section 1546. I see that we can complete a form here in the UK at the Thai embassy that gives me the same authorising rights as if we were married.
      Section 1557 states this is possible and would be in effect from day of registration. As I said before I can travel more readily than our sons mother and if this is the case I would return and sign the papers at the tanbien next week. As neither myself nor his mum speak Thai ( she was born here in the UK) asking the tanbien office for help is not so easy!!!

      • Totally understood. Hopefully the embassy can help with the documents. I didn’t realise you weren’t married at the time of birth which also adds another layer of complexity. If I’m not mistaken, if you married in Thailand following your sons birth that would have given you parental rights automatically, but it sounds like there is a way to legitimise your status under Thai law via the embassy, which is good.

        Note though that he will still need both parents to sign off, so that will mean your wife will need to front the embassy as well to sign, or if possible allocate a power of attorney to say your wifes father.

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