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  1. #1
    The Fool on the Hill bowie's Avatar
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    For Those Who Believe Thai Courts Are Biased Against Foreigners

    http://scandasia.com/danish-man-wins-lawsuit-against-thai-wife-for-not-sharing-assets/


    Danish man wins lawsuit against Thai wife for not sharing assets
    By
    Gregers MøllerJune 24, 2020

    For Those Who Believe Thai Courts Are Biased Against Foreigners-buriram-scaled-jpg


    The Provincial Court in Buriram brokered on Wednesday a deal between a Danish man and his former Thai partner who had denied him any return of the roughly 5 mill. baht, he had invested in a house they had built together and a car, they had bought in her name.

    The court ruled, that the Thai woman should transfer the car, a Honda CRV bought for 1.7 mill. baht, to the Dane. The woman had initially claimed, that the car was a gift of affection and so was the house and since it was all in her name and they were not married, he had no right to any of her assets.

    That was not how the judge saw it. According to her, the hearing on Tuesday in the court made it clear that the couple had entered a common law marriage and lived together as husband and wife – although not for very long. He had transferred the funds to her bank account in steps that corresponded to the steps in payment for the car and the building phases of the house.

    The judge also explained, that since the house was built on land that belonged to the Thai woman’s mother, the only alternative to a compromise would be to tear down the house and sell the used building material and sell the car and split the money – since the Danish man was entitled to 50 percent of the shared assets of the relationship. That would give him half of approximately 900.000 baht.

    The judge made no room for doubt that if the Thai woman should decide not to accept her suggestion, then she would rule in favour of the Danish man. Leaving the car to him and keep the house was a better alternative for both, she proposed.

    It took the accused – the former partner – surprisingly long tome to make up her mind if she preferred to continue to fight for her claim, that it was all a gift, or accept the deal offered. Eventually, she declared in tears that if the Dane would not come back and live with her, which she had hoped for, then it was OK that he got the car.

    The courts ruling – which was brokered into a deal before it actually became a ruling – is a significant break from the popular belief among both Thai women and foreigners in Thailand, that if the marriage has not been properly registered, then the Thai woman can walk away as the owner all of the couple’s assets registered in her name in case the relationship should break up.

    The relationship started in December 2018, when the Danish man visited Thailand for the first time after his wife had passed away. He met the Thai woman in Hua Hin, which he visited together with another Danish man and his Thai wife. She was working in a bar there and he liked her. After a few days of seeing her every day, he bought her out of the bar for a full week and together they went to Kanchanaburi where his friend went up to play golf.

    After that, he went back to Denmark only to return a month and a half later. This time, his girlfriend took him up to see her mother in Buriram and he stayed for a full three months.

    Between the spring of 2019 and February 2020 when the relationship ended, the Danish man transferred a total of 5,7 mill Baht from his bank account to hers in the belief, that they would live together similar to what he saw his friend did with his Thai wife. The car cost 1.7 mill baht. The house around 3 mill. baht. To keep her from going back to the bar to work, he sent her 25.000 baht every month. And then there was the debt of the Thai woman’s mother of 200.000 baht, which he also agreed to help pay.

    The bank statements left no doubt of the amount of money, but the Thai woman’s lawyer insisted, it was paid as a gift of affection even the court was presented with evidence of the payments of expenses which correlated to the money transferred.

    The breakup happened in the wake of a lavish house warming party which the Danish man had questioned the necessity of. The party lasted a day, included a stage with live music and female dancers and was attended by around 250 – 300 guests. In the following days he was given the cold shoulder. Then he noticed that all the leftover building material was being moved over to his wife’s mothers house and used to build a wall there. When he asked who paid for that, the thin ice broke. He was told he could just move out because this was her house. And he could not take the car as it was her car.

    At first he called his friend who lived around 50 km away and asked if he could come and stay with them for a few day. They helped him with practical details and drove him to the provincial police to formerly register a complaint against the Thai woman.

    The first court case, which the lawyer of his friend and his wife raised for him, was to claim the car as his. When the lawyer of the woman denied him that, the Danish man’s lawyer withdrew the case and started a new case claiming full separation of the home, asking for 50 percent of the 5.7 mill. Baht the Dane had transferred over time, plus interest since the breakup.

    Winning that case could set a significant precedence for similar cases where the judge accepts that the intention of the paying foreigner was to live together as husband and wife with the Thai person and therefore could reasonably claim to have been cheated into buying the shared assets and register them in the name of the Thai national.

  2. #2
    Hangin' Around cyrille's Avatar
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    One swallow doesn't make a summer, just as it shouldn't make a marriage.

  3. #3
    Thailand Expat
    Iceman123's Avatar
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    ^
    You old romantic you.

  4. #4
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    I wonder who the wife pissed off.

  5. #5
    Thailand Expat tomcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Topper View Post
    I wonder who the wife pissed off with.
    ...ftfy...

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    To get the best of Thai justice, you have to buy it. Or perhaps have familial ties. Out of the question for this small matter. Yes, several Thai lawsuits are adjudicated quite fairly, and in the case of divorce, more equitable to the bloke than it would be at home. So, the gavel comes down and case closed, right? Wrong. Then there is the small matter of collecting the assets. And oooh boy can they lead you on a merry chase here- it takes years, fees keep building up- and most farang give up the chase, or accept a hefty discount. I've certainly been witness to this during my years in Thailand, but touch wood never experienced it.

  7. #7
    Thailand Expat tomcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sabang View Post
    I've certainly been witness to this during my years in Thailand, but touch wood never experienced it.
    ...a friend experienced such a verdict: he won a breach of contract case against a former Thai senator 14 years ago...he's still waiting for his settlement...

  8. #8
    The Fool on the Hill bowie's Avatar
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    The points in this case are: It is a Court of Law. Both the plaintiff and the defendant were represented by attorneys. There was definitive documentation of the money trail, incoming into Thailand, transferred from falang to Thai and what the money was spent on. There was no formal marriage although it was ruled a common-law relationship. It is also documented that the woman involved was listed as the sole owner of the properties, both the house and auto.

    It was ruled by the judge that both persons were entitled to 50% of the assets. The judge then broke the fairest deal she could in this case. The alternative of tearing down the house and selling the building materials and the auto would have resulted in about THB 900k to each person. It was much better for the Dane to take possession of the vehicle and leave.



    The real and important point of this case is that you, as a foreigner, can get fair and equitable treatment in a Thai court of law.

    Whereas the urban legend of you are screwed is just an urban legend. By all means, legally protect yourself, but, a court of law is a court of law and will resolve legal issues as per the law and regardless of nationality.

    In this case the woman did legally own both of the properties and avered that they were gifts given freely and clear. The court replied Bullshit.

  9. #9
    Thailand Expat
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    Quote Originally Posted by Topper View Post
    I wonder who the wife pissed off.
    Some Danish guy apparently

  10. #10
    Custom Title Changer
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    Quote Originally Posted by bowie View Post
    The real and important point of this case is that you, as a foreigner, can get fair and equitable treatment in a Thai court of law.
    "can" being the operative word in your statement. "will" is what should be expected. The difference between the two is why a foreigner should never be in a position to be in a Thai court.

    LOL, ask me how I know!

  11. #11
    Hangin' Around cyrille's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Topper View Post
    "can" being the operative word in your statement.
    And even that isn't proven true in this case until the guy actually gets the cash, of course.

    There's many a slip 'twixt the cup and the lip in Thailand.

  12. #12
    The Fool on the Hill bowie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Topper View Post
    LOL, ask me how I know!
    Tops - you do know.

    My point is the general idea that a foreigner is screwed when going up against a Thai in a Thailand court is flawed. The falang gave (paid for) a house and car to a bargirl, unmarried, everything in her name and managed to receive fair and reasonable treatment in a Thai court of law.

    In your case as you have stated it was a foreigner versus a foreigner. And - in the end - the case against you was dropped. I admire your principals - I personally would have taken the easiest route out. We are not comparing apples to apples.


    My interest in this is entirely along the lines of immigration (again, not comparing apples to apples) but, my interest is along the lines of a "what if" in challenging an immigration officers decision in a court of law. I do have a lot at stake in Thailand and should I be denied an extension I would appeal the decision in a court of law.


    To be honest, in the mentioned case, I believed that the courts would have sided with the bargirl in that she is Thai and the property was in her name only. I am surprised that the courts followed/awarded a 50-50 split.

  13. #13
    The Dentist English Noodles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bowie View Post
    I do have a lot at stake in Thailand and should I be denied an extension I would appeal the decision in a court of law.
    What court in Thailand enables you to appeal an immigration decision?

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    Custom Title Changer
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    Quote Originally Posted by bowie View Post
    We are not comparing apples to apples.
    I was up against a well known figure in the Pattaya court system...the guy drank with judges after hours.

    EN, there is no court of immigration appeal. The immigration judge passes along a verdict which allows a criminal judge to impose a sentence as I recall.

    To appeal the decision, you talk to the criminal court who will get recommendations from the immigration court and the ccriminal court will make the final decision.
    "I was a good student. I comprehend very well, OK, better than I think almost anybody," - President Trump comparing his legal knowledge to a Federal judge.

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    The Dentist English Noodles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Topper View Post
    EN, there is no court of immigration appeal. The immigration judge passes along a verdict which allows a criminal judge to impose a sentence as I recall.

    To appeal the decision, you talk to the criminal court who will get recommendations from the immigration court and the ccriminal court will make the final decision.
    As I understand it, in the case the Director General has ordered permission to be revoked [extension denied] , the alien whose permission has been revoked may only appeal such orders through the Immigration Commission and then the order of the Immigration Commission will be final, and no appeal may be made.

    Section 36 of the Thai Immigration Act.

    Thailand Immigration Law Act

  16. #16
    Thailand Expat TheRealKW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bowie View Post
    ut, a court of law is a court of law and will resolve legal issues as per the law and regardless of nationality.
    Quote Originally Posted by bowie View Post
    The falang gave (paid for) a house and car to a bargirl, unmarried, everything in her name and managed to receive fair and reasonable treatment in a Thai court of law.
    One lucky case does not automatically extend to all cases.

  17. #17
    Thailand Expat tomcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheRealKW View Post
    One lucky case does not automatically extend to all cases.
    ...agree...cherry-picking an example hides a multitude of judicial purchases, judicial incompetence and judicial malfeasance...why else would there be laws against criticizing court decisions?

  18. #18
    The Fool on the Hill bowie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by English Noodles View Post
    Thailand Immigration Law Act
    EN, thanks for the link - good info.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheRealKW View Post
    One lucky case does not automatically extend to all cases.
    "Lucky" is subjective and indicative of a bias. As far as "automatically extend to all cases"; In a court of law a previous judges decision establishes a precedent. Definition: A judicial decision that is binding on other equal or lower courts in the same jurisdiction as to its conclusion on a point of law, and may also be persuasive to courts in other jurisdictions, in subsequent cases involving sufficiently similar facts.

    So, it may well extend to future cases.

    But, anyway, as is typically the case with TD, we have armchair lawyers providing their opines concerning a subject based on their vast experience with things they have heard.

    I do accept Toppers statements, he has been there and done that - firsthand experience - not hearsay. And EN for providing a link to useful information.

    In a court of law information is presented to to court. A decision is rendered on the basis of the information presented and the regulations.

  19. #19
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    So did she sign the car over or just ignore the court ruling like they mostly do ?

  20. #20
    Thailand Expat tomcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bowie View Post
    As far as "automatically extend to all cases"; In a court of law a previous judges decision establishes a precedent. Definition: A judicial decision that is binding on other equal or lower courts in the same jurisdiction as to its conclusion on a point of law, and may also be persuasive to courts in other jurisdictions, in subsequent cases involving sufficiently similar facts.
    ...deflecting again...a generalization that may apply elsewhere, but not necessarily in the swamp. Your confidence in the professionalism of local judicial authorities is touching...

  21. #21
    The Fool on the Hill bowie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fondles View Post
    So did she sign the car over or just ignore the court ruling like they mostly do ?
    Don't know, considering the article is/was dated all of four days ago. A courts decision would be enforced by the police. If the defendant refuses to surrender the vehicle she could be charged with theft. And, the house is at risk. If the defendant resists the courts brokered compromise the judge has already gone on record as stating she will find for the complainant.

    Playing with fire - much to lose little to gain. The defendant did say she preferred the complainant move back in and continue their relationship.

    And, do you have a link to support the "as they mostly do" statement?

  22. #22
    The Fool on the Hill bowie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tomcat View Post
    not necessarily in the swamp.
    more hearsay on the basis of your vast experiences in the Thai legal system eh?
    Last edited by bowie; 28-06-2020 at 07:34 AM.

  23. #23
    Thailand Expat tomcat's Avatar
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    ...see post#7...my friend is still waiting for his settlement...I've forwarded your optimistic posts, however...that'll make him feel better...

  24. #24
    The Fool on the Hill bowie's Avatar
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    Glad my posts will help him feel better.

    But, as far as your generalization of a friend still waiting - What legal action has he taken to have the courts order carried out?

  25. #25
    Thailand Expat tomcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bowie View Post
    Glad my posts will help him feel better.

    But, as far as your generalization of a friend still waiting - What legal action has he taken to have the courts order carried out?
    none...on the advice of his lawyer. The monetary settlement for a broken contract remains unenforced. The lawyer further advised that another court action might result in unpleasant retribution (I assume he meant counter-suits for defamation, etc)...a definite threat to someone who wants to keep his retirement visa unmolested...
    Majestically enthroned amid the vulgar herd

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