Having a baby in Thailand and registering the birth if you’re a foreign national can be a bit confusing. Of course, if your partner is Thai you’ll have few problems but you’ll still need to know how to register your child at your native country’s embassy. Neither things are that difficult to do, simply follow these quick instructions.
Is Your Baby a Thai Citizen? – The first question many foreign mothers ask when they give birth to a baby in Thailand is, “Is my baby a Thai citizen?”. Weirdly, unlike most other countries, if your baby is born in Thailand he/she is not Thai and cannot get Thai citizenship unless one of the parents is a Thai national. This is why it’s important to have your baby registered with both the Thai authorities and your native country’s embassy as soon as possible if both parents are not Thai.
Registering Your Baby’s Birth in Thailand – Like most things in Thailand, registering your baby’s birth isn’t that difficult, it just requires a lot of waiting time at a government office and a fair amount of paperwork.
Registering the birth is done at the Amphur office, or district office. It must be done within 30 days of your baby’s birth. You can register at any Amphur office in Thailand but it’s easiest to do it close to where you live. (You may be familiar with the Amphur office if you got married in Thailand, as that’s where you will have had the civil ceremony and registered your marriage).
When you get to the Amphur office, everything is taken care of on a ‘first come, first served’ basis. Get there when they open at 8:30 am, so you won’t have to wait too long. (Amphur offices are open from 8:30 am to 4pm, Monday through Friday). If you can and your partner is not Thai, take a Thai friend with you, as all the paperwork is in Thai. Complete the relevant forms and submit them to the clerk, then wait. It can take an hour or two depending on the office. After the forms have been checked for accuracy, a Thai birth certificate will be drawn up for your child. This too will be in Thai, so you should get it translated into English (or your own native language) at one of the translation services near your embassy.
Your child is now registered in Thailand and has a Thai birth certificate.
Registering Your Baby’s Birth at Your Native Country’s Embassy – Obviously, requirements differ depending on the embassy. For the British, for instance, registering your child isn’t mandatory as the UK doesn’t require your child to have a British birth certificate. Other countries do. You should check with the embassy of your native country to find out what their specific requirements are before you go. (Most embassies have this information published on their websites).
No matter which foreign embassy you will be registering your baby’s birth with though, you will need your baby’s Thai birth certificate, plus a translation of it into your native language. You’ll be required to show your marriage certificate if you’re married, plus both the baby’s mother and father’s passports or ID card in the case of a Thai national who doesn’t have a passport. You’ll also need a passport-sized photograph of your baby.
Each embassy will charge a fee for the birth registration and, again, it depends on the embassy. The US, for instance only charges $65, whereas the British Embassy charges almost $300.
Registering your baby’s birth in Thailand and at your native country’s embassy in Thailand takes only a few hours at each place. It’s recommended you do it as soon after your baby’s birth as possible to prevent any problems if you suddenly find yourself having to leave the country unexpectedly