Requirements for Foreign Businesses in Registering for Partnership in Thailand

Requirements for Foreign Businesses in Registering for Partnership in Thailand -- legal services Phuket

Countless visiting travelers, especially those coming from the western countries are so captivated by the exquisite beauty and enigmatic charms of Thailand, most of them even end up staying in the country for far longer than they planned. For some tourists, they established good relationships with the Thai people that they feel so at home and comfortable – enough for them to look at the prospects of running a small business and make Thailand their second home.

Unfortunately, it takes great familiarity with Thailand’s law in order to understand the restrictions imposed for foreigners who would like to operate a business in Thailand. For example, foreigners are not allowed by Thailand’s law to open a store, a shop or any establishment in any part of Thailand wherein you as a foreign national is the sole owner/proprietor of whatever business it may be notwithstanding how this business can help the economic growth of the said country.  Nevertheless, this doesn’t mean you can’t established a business, especially those US citizens covered by the US Treaty of Amity.

By law, Thailand recognizes three general types of partnerships, namely:

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  • Unregistered Ordinary Partnerships. This partnership specifies that all partners have joint and whole liability for all obligations of the partnership
  • Registered Ordinary Partnerships. The partnership, if registered becomes a legal entity. One that is separate and distinct from the individual partners
  • Limited Partnerships. The liability of individual partner is limited to the capital amount contributed to the partnership. This type of partnership must be registered as well.

The primary difference among the three types of partnership is on the degree of liability of each individual partner under each type of entity. Partnerships do not qualify for Board of Investment Promotion. And as such, most foreigners don’t endeavor this type of business organization. 

Registration of Partnership Company    

For the Limited Partnership / Registered Ordinary Partnership, the following procedures apply:

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  • Partners should apply for permission to use the partnership name. This will entail requesting for research of records to determine that the intended partnership name has not been used by other people.
  • Application forms should contain all relevant details – name of partnership, names of managing partners and limitation of the power, if any, nationality, address, age, investment and signature of all partners. The application form is usually signed by the managing partner in the presence of the Partnership and Company Registrar. Alternatively, the managing partner may sign the document in the presence of an ordinary or extraordinary member of the Thai Bar Association. In other cases, a lawyer may be appointed by the partnership to effect the registration on behalf of the partnership.
  • The fee shall depend on the number of partners. For three partners, the fee is THB 1,000 and the fee for each additional partner is THB 200.
  • A certificate will be issued after registration.

Remember that lawyers are important entity of partnership registration. Hiring a lawyer with great understanding on Thai laws will be of great help and will make the process a lot easier. Any business registration in Thailand requires consultation with legal experts to avoid mishaps and to be sure that every deal a business will venture in is aligned with the country’s law. Here’s a law firm in Phuket who can help in business registration and provide legal advice.

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